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Teej

01.03 - Comments and Suggestions

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Hey Teej, how bout a thread that lets people put down their problems to get help from other people.... maybe one for each section?? Just thought of it because Im going to have lots of questions that I need to ask about things, but I cant do nothing because there is bnowhere that they quite fit..... their not all exactly on topic, but I need the help to get some things that Im setting up working and this place would be a good place to ask... does this sound a good idea????

cheers Teej, and keep up the good work

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Hey Teej it was a good idea to make up an article on how to set up the compiler to get directX to work. I remember last time there was like 200 messages stating the error you mentioned in that article. Now I think it will be easier to actually concentrate on making games

Oh, and as a suggestion, I hope you''re gonna go deep in the math part... once again so we''re even more ready for the 3d stuff...

Biere et punk
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Greetings All,

I was wondering what the best program was to create a good 2D Multi-Player RPG. I would like it to be tiled base, and look something like, Furcadia (www.furcadia.com). Please help me! What should I use? What should I do? What language should I use?

Thank you!
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Hi folks,

Thanks for the suggestions so far...I''ll try and address a few of them:

Periodic challenges are to be an integral part of the next (new) section. It involves getting to know some of the basic features that every game incorporates, and we''ll be using the template code to work on.

For questions and answers on specific topics, I thought it best to use the ''Reply'' feature on the article in question. If you think that there''s a need for a topic unrelated, let me know.

As for installments, please read the new News post.

Teej

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Is there any way that I can get the sdk''s without having to download them? I am on a lan and my download rate sucks.
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Dungeon Master.

You can get the DirectX SDK on CD. Microsoft will send you it. It isn''t free though. I don''t recall how much it is, but it isn''t very expensive, so you could get it that way.
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Hi, Teej;

By the time that you get your tutorials up and running, you''re going to need a pacemaker for your heart. I sure hope you don''t buy it from the company that sold you your computer.

Good luck.
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Actually, I bought the parts OEM and put the system together myself.

HAAAAHAAHAAAHAAHAAHAAHAHAAHAHAAHAHAAAAAAAA...

Figures.

Teej

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I searched the microsoft site for a LONG time and still haven''t found a link to be able to buy a SDK cd, does anyone know where I could find that link(I''ve already tried microsoft''s help...those losers). Any help would be GREATLY appreciated.

Dungeon Master
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i''m not sure why the ''order sdk cd rom'' link for dx7 isn''t working, but here is the url

http://msdn.microsoft.com/directx/downloads.asp

if your on a lan, just setup the download and go watch some tv or something. or setup a ftp server,and i can up it to you.

if your looking for dx8, then disregard above.
wb

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I''m not sure where to go about getting a CD from Microsoft, but I did have a thought: Depending on the price of the CD, wouldn''t it be a better investment to buy a game development book that has the SDK included in its CD?

I''m sure that the most common recommendation going is Andre Lamothe''s book, and although it''s DirectX 7.0, I''m pretty sure that you get the complete SDK on one of the CDs. You also get the student version of Microsoft Visual C++. And if that wasn''t enough, you get some great 3D books on CD as well, along with other shareware apps and game resources.

Just a thought...

Teej

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Hey! Teej, great job!

It is true that the code on your turotials are realy small and i get hard time to read them on my 15" monitor.

Other thing, i did not see anything on this forum that talk about you. I did not search the rest of the site though, i was too much into the forum. Who are you Teej? What is your background? What stated you to code for games? Why help us, the poors wanna be coders that take so much of your time?

Whatever the reasons, thanks to beeing there.

Lancelot

Life is endlessly short.
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does anyone know where I can get some C/C++ headers??? Because I have a rather good compiler(well that''s my newbie opinion; correct me if I''m wrong please) but it has next to no headers..
Any info would be greatly appreciated.


-Radium(Jack)
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RadiumJack: You''re going to need more than headers... a header file contains only prototypes (usually) for the real code that resides in either a .C/.CPP/.LIB file. So, depending on what you''re trying to import, you''ll need the corresponding file that contains the header prototype''s implementation. Also, you should be warned that even this won''t always work, as libraries that are pre-compiled may be incompatible with yours...

Teej
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Hey Teej,
I just found this amazing forum today and I must say I''m very impressed, but at the same time I was sort of disappointed. I''m currently trying to learn D3D8 after having written two small games in DDraw7 and I haven''t had much luck finding any resources on the web beyond nexe and drunken hyena (which are two great sites, btw). My main problem area is that I''m not down with all the 3D math and concepts that I need to fully understand what I''m doing. Anyway, the point of my post is to just encourage you to get some more math based topics up and hurry up to the 3D! Oh and also, on the note of Direct Draw 7. I found something "Very" interesting in the Dx8 SDK. All the Direct Draw demo''s use Direct Draw 7 but they use two wrappers for DD. CDisplay and CSurface. I went hunting around for them and found them to be in ddutil.h and ddutil.cpp. No longer do those two files contain a slew of functions for making DD stuff easier like they did in the Dx7 SDK, but now they contain two classes that act as wrappers for Direct Draw7! I''m talkin serious wrappage. For example, creating a full screen display and a front\back buffer chain is as simple as:

CDisplay *DD; // This would be global, since it''s our Direct Draw object wrapper

DD = new CDisplay; // This would go in our WinMain

// Change the resolution to the passed values and set the color depth to bPP
DD->CreateFullScreenDisplay(winHandle, screenWidth, screenHeight, bPP);

It has similar functions for creating palettes and surfaces, and you can get the DDraw object and the front\back buffers. So if you need to manually do something... like lock the back buffer you could do

DD->GetBackBuffer()->Lock(...);

Check it out its in the mssdk\samples\media\common\* directories!

If you need any help figuring out how those two classes work, feel free to ask cause I''ve played around with them quite a bit.

Keep up the great work!

- Clash
- www.zeroinfinity.net
- A New World, Built By New Minds
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Hi, first off, great job Teej! The tutorials have really gotten things rolling for me. I am now trying to make a tetris clone but I am trying to make a GUI for it that is reusable and I am having some trouble getting started. I was hoping that you might do a article on game GUIs at some point.



"Fall seven times, stand up eight."
-Japanese Proverb
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Hi,

It''s fairly obvious that everyone wants to get into 3D, as that''s where today''s games are, but I''d like to emphasise that since the heart of game development is the design, implementation and development of algorithms, it really doesn''t matter how the game looks. The fundamentals of game development consist of the skills one needs in order to write any type of game, regardless of genre or technology. We all need to learn how to make games by taking challenges and conquering them, and that''s the type of skill I''m trying to teach -- when you look past the 3D graphics, it''s just a game, the same as any 2D game.

Here''s how I see it... we need to get our ''feet wet'' by creating smaller, simpler games in the tradition of the arcade classics, and slowly (and strategically) incorporate larger, more robust games that highlight various aspects of game development. This journey will ultimately end with you having the ability to envision, design and create any game imaginable, as you will have ''collected'' all of skills fashioned from such a comprehensive journey. Getting to 3D is an eventuality, but you''ll have to realize that 3D is just a graphical interface -- nothing more. It lies lower on my list of priorities than, let''s say, proper data handling techniques and speed vs. functionality trade-offs.

So, in a nutshell, yes we''ll be getting to 3D. Not because 3D is the ultimate goal though -- just because it''s an asset to certain types of games.

Teej

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Hello, Teej;

Considering the skill level that most of the participants in this forum seem to possess, your approach to game development is bang on. The only change that I might be inclined to make would be to use object oriented programming principles a little more. But, at this level, it probably doesn''t matter all that much.

I do have two suggestions -- one for the people who are following this tutorial series and one for you. (I apologize in advance if you find these suggestions a little harsh, but they have been bugging me for months.)

1. For the people following the tutorials: Although Teej says that there is no such thing as a stupid question, I have to disagree. When the same question has been answered twenty times, it is pretty obvious that the questioner is just too lazy to go back and review previous installments. I don''t think that it is asking too much for people to review the material that Teej has written BEFORE posting questions. This could save an awful lot of space in some of Teej''s later tutorials which presume that you have mastered what came before (see, for example, 04.09 - Game States and Variable Scope). Also, you should supplement Teej''s material with the articles from GameDev.net and perhaps from one or two books (e.g, Andre LaMothe).

2. For Teej: You are doing a fantastic job - I love your style and enjoy everything that you''ve written, whether it is new to me or whether I am already familiar with the material. BUT, could you please stop promising to post new material. Promising more that you can deliver is a real turn-off and it detracts from the wonderful job that you are doing. It would be better if you simply said that you will post new material when (and if) you have the time to do it.

Keep up the good work!

PS: one minor point -- could you please use a spell check on your articles before posting
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hey teej
i just wanted to say thanks for the great site im really learning alot and am well on my way to making my first game
i wanted to let you know that the link to your site under the animation anticipation string is dead i guess your adress changed anyways thanks for everything =D
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Weatherman: Thanks for the comments. I totally agree with you -- it''s a little psychological game I play with myself (and tend to lose), figuring that if I promise a due date, I force myself to meet it. In the future, I''m going to do exactly as you''ve mentioned. Maybe with the self-inflicted stress removed, I''ll (ironically) get more accompished!

Teej

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hey teej i wanted to say again your doing a great job this is by far one of the best tutorials ive ever seen! !=o)

i have knoticed also that there are multiple posts in almost every string of this forum informing you of problems with your web site. so i was thinking maybe it would be wise to make a dedicated string for reporting problems so that way it would clear the articals up for posts relivent to the topic and make the forum a little more organized.

but after all its up the postee to make sure his/her post is in the right place.

and just to reiterate, good job man!
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Hey Teej can you give us a tutorial on how to make MENUS for our games in MSVC++? I have a couple books that talk about it but none of the ways they show me seem to work and the "helpful, simplified" wizard they provide to make resources in MSVC++ ISN''T so helpful and simplified.

That and I''d like to see us make games in a resizeable window on the desktop.
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Menus the VC++ way tend to make large use of MFC, which is bad form for game programming, due to MFC having way too much overhead to have decently-sized games be playable. MFC stuff is much more valuable in the game programming world for things such as tools and editors, which perhaps the forum will get to eventually.

As for windowed applications, that involves making a few necessary tweaks to the way DirectDraw is set up, and the way the window is set up, which maybe Teej will also get to in a future article. Windowed games are nicer for debugging (especially with VC++...when you can actually USE its debugging features).

Speaking of debugging, before most people get too entrenched in coding larger games (Blocks ''n Lines should be fine without good debugging practices), but might I suggest an article on debugging, that perhaps takes into account windowed DirectDraw, or keeping variables written to the screen, so that people may not get as frustrated when trying to get something working? I can''t count the number of times good debug code has helped find the errors I''ve made in practice.
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quote:

Menus the VC++ way tend to make large use of MFC, which is bad form for game programming, due to MFC having way too much overhead to have decently-sized games be playable. MFC stuff is much more valuable in the game programming world for things such as tools and editors, which perhaps the forum will get to eventually.


You don''t need to use MFC to create menus for your games. Also, when the player uses a menu, he/she probably doesn''t need blinding speed at that particular moment.

By the way, MFC isn''t quite as slow as some people have tried to make out -- unless you have a very old computer (e.g. a 80486). You could even program "Blocks and Lines" without DirectDraw and still get very good response times with most computers.

You are right that MFC comes into its own for programming tools and editors.
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Can anyone walk me thru how to make a MENU RESOURCE in VC++? Just a quik menu with FILE and EXIT under file to exit the program[&FILE->E&xit]. I understand about the ID''s and how WndProc interpret''s them.

Or point me in the right direction to find info on it. Help is confusing.

Any help greatly appreciated.
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