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const init within a class

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MSVC8 express wont let me compile with the constant, BALL_VELOCITY outside of the initializer list(like below). Is it something im doing wrong, or this a rule? Ball::Ball(int bv)
{
	pBallBitmap = SDL_LoadBMP("ball.bmp");
	SDL_SetColorKey(pBallBitmap, SDL_SRCCOLORKEY, SDL_MapRGB(pBallBitmap->format, 255,0,255));

	mBallRect;                       //rect for bitmap position info
	mBallRect.x = 6;
	mBallRect.y = 6;
	mBallRect.w = 14;
	mBallRect.h = 14;
	mpBallRect = &mBallRect;         //pointer to ballrect

	BALLx = 300;
	BALLy = 400;
	BALL_VELOCITYx = bv; // or BALL_VELOCITYx = 500; ?
	BALL_VELOCITYy = bv; // or BALL_VELOCITYy = 500; ?
	ballVelx = 0;
	ballVely = -1;
}

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It's a rule; non-static constant members must be initialized in the member initialization list.

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