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Hi, Although I'm not a total n00b with programming itself (have done some game modding on the graphics side mostly, and can follow the schemes and understand it's purpose), I am a total n00b when it comes to higher programming languages, especially C++ and it's syntax. Completely new to DirectX 9. Have read the recommended beginning listing of books, but due to money constraints, and time limits to read a library, would like to plead: which recommended book is a good hands on one, that thoroughly teaches the dos and don'ts (so not to learn bad habits), that gets me to work, and not bogged down on C.S. theory? Truly interested in learning enough to mod a game level in C++/DirectX 9, even if it's going to be a 15hr a day cram fest for weeks. From there, if I can grasp it, would like to move on to a more formal training regime (theory and math, etc.). This is like a test run, to see if I can handle it before investing a fortune on books and tools. Can anyone point me to the right direction with a good hands on C++/DirectX 9 training book to get started? And can you explain why the book is good, in your opinion? Thanks! SandyK

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I doubt you'll be able to find a book that covers both of them; you'll have to get one on C++ and one on DirectX (although you should remember that there are other languages and APIs out there).

For C++, I haven't had any problems with Sams Teach Yourself C++ in 21 Days. As an added bonus with the Sams book, you'll be able to jump into the C++ Workshop currently taking place here at gamedev.net (check the last forum on the list). I've also heard many good things about Beginning C++ Game Programming; instead of making graphical games, you learn basic C++ syntax through text-based games.

I can't really recommened anything for DirectX; I started with Beginning Game Programming (different from the C++ book above), but it wasn't very good, and uses a three-year old version of DirectX. Still, you might want to get it so you can learn the basic concept of what a game loop is, etc, and then read the DirectX documentation for more info (it even includes a few tutorials).

Whatever you find, read the amazon.com reviews for the book before you get it; they're usually accurate.

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Hi,

My recommendation is to start by doing.

- Install .NET C++ Express (if you don't have a compiler)
- Install the DX SDK
- Build the samples
- Pick an interesting sample, and then start hacking around with it
- Do google searches for learning C/C++ to fill in the gaps

Jumping right into C/C++ can be quite a learning curve though, especially if you don't have an 'expert' on hand. If you fancy trying (Blitz) basic first, then there's a book called something like 'Game Programming for teens'. It got good reviews on Amazon.

Or you could start with a simple python game by following the tutorials on http://www.scriptedfun.com/about/

Learning basic or python first will introduce you to the basics of coding, without some of the harder things like linker errors, pointers, malloc etc.

Also, I believe there's some useful information in the sticky posts at the top of this forum.

(Not quite the answer you were looking for perhaps...)

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Thanks for the pointer. Sure need the heads up, as there's alot of books out there. If it was only so simple to find the right book, that teaches the correct habits, and isn't loaded down with theory, it'll be soooooo great.

I'm one of those types who learn by not doing the don'ts, and any book heavy in the don'ts will help me more. It's like teaching a kid to keep their fingers off the stovetop and out of electrical socket deal.

Again, thanks for the suggestion, too.

SandyK

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Been reading about tools and the pluses and minuses of each. I'm used to hand coding (i.e., things like modding php forums) as tedious as it is; but will MS Visual Studio/Express teach me bad habits, like getting too dependent on an editor, though (like what happens on the web design side with WYSWYG editors)? Like to learn good habits.

It was recommended to me some time before to pick up Python (and I agree why -- it's English readable). But the game I wish to mod is compiled in C++ and uses DirectX 9, so have no choice but to dive into learning it. It maybe too much, but I'm going to give it my all to learn, as games aren't going to get any more easier. At least I'll learn something new, and what's really under the hood, as well.

Appreciate any and all tips!

SandyK



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Quote:
Original post by SandyKIT
Been reading about tools and the pluses and minuses of each. I'm used to hand coding (i.e., things like modding php forums) as tedious as it is; but will MS Visual Studio/Express teach me bad habits, like getting too dependent on an editor, though (like what happens on the web design side with WYSWYG editors)? Like to learn good habits.

It was recommended to me some time before to pick up Python (and I agree why -- it's English readable). But the game I wish to mod is compiled in C++ and uses DirectX 9, so have no choice but to dive into learning it. It maybe too much, but I'm going to give it my all to learn, as games aren't going to get any more easier. At least I'll learn something new, and what's really under the hood, as well.

Appreciate any and all tips!

SandyK


The visual part of visual studio is nothing like a wysiwyg editor for websites, it should include a few tools for creating resources (dialog boxes, menus, etc, standard windows stuff) but for game programming you are pretty much forced to "hand coding" , except you'll have a much better editor than notepad :)

VS has syntax highlighting, tooltips for functions, a great debugger and lots of other nice features that will help you keep track of the code. (extremely useful when the project gets larger).

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