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Need some guidance!

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Hello, I'm new to gamedev.net, and I decided to join because I'm still kinda lost in the world of game programming. Here's my story and why I need some guidance/help: Last summer I decided to start programming and making games. I had no experience, so I looked around for some advice and info about what language to start with. Eventually I decided that I would start with C++. After I understood the basics, I installed Allegro in Dev-C++ and proceeded to make a pong game. Then school started and I kinda stopped programming :/ So now I've decided to get back into game programming. This time however, I want to avoid using C++ and allegro because C++ was pretty hard and it took me days to get my clone working. Allegro was also a pain, because the tutorials for it were old and I had trouble finding support for it. After searching the gamedev.net forums and searching on google, I've come up with a new plan: 1. Learn python,learn pygame, then make simple games. 2. Learn C#,learn XNA, then make more complex games. My question is: Is my plan any good? For me, game programming is a hobby, and I'm not sure if I want to get a job in the games/programming industry. At this point, I'd be extremely happy if I could make a simple 2d tile-based game. Thanks in advance for your replies, and sorry for the long read :P

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what exactly did you find hard about C++, also I'd suggest getting a VisualStudio IDE, but thats more of prefrence, I just like the way VS is laid out compared to other IDEs.

if your already familiar with C++ I'd suggest sticking with it, trust me it get alot easier once you start programming in it on a daily basis. and you should take a look at SDL, it's purely 2D (using OpenGL) but it's great to get things up fast, until youre ready to take that leap into DirectX or OpenGL.

just my 2 Cents.

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Not only should you stick with c++, but allegro has a fantastic tutorial in the form of a book on how to make video games.

Game Programming All in One - Third Edition

It is nothing more than a great big huge allegro tutorial. Make sure you get the third edition, the previous editions are all directx, not allegro.

- Goishin

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Sounds like a good plan to me. I'm currently using Python for a game project, together with the Panda 3D engine, and it's surprizing how fast you can get results with it. Don't stick to C++ for the sake of it, just go with Python. It's indeed easier to pick up and generally, more productive. You'll be trading some performance for it, but that's not likely to be a problem, unless you're creating a very heavy game.

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The plan sounds fine but honestly dont stick with C++ just because people say to and dont do that just because people say to, have a look throught some examples on the web, which it sounds like you have done a bit of already, and see which one looks more natural to you and which one you find easier to understand then go with that one. Even just as a hobby you'll probally end up using all of them at one point or another so just go with the one that feels most comoftable to you.

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Sure, I think that sounds like a pretty good plan. If you're after something that will let you develop games faster than you're able to with C++/Allegro then you'll probably be pleased with either Python or C# (or as you've planned out, each in sequence) once you get past the initial stage of learning some basics of the language.

My recommendation would be to go for it and see if you like it; you can always go back to C++/Allegro (or C++ with an alternative API) if you find you don't really like Python or C#, but you will probably find them a bit more productive for you as a beginner, and both languages are certainly more than capable of simple (or even quite complex) tile-based games. Experience in either will also be of value if you do at some point in the future decide you'd like to get a job in programming.

Hope that helps. [smile]

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