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gregsometimes

How to make PC games

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I started writing a set of pages on making games on the PC. The first page assumes no previous experience with writing code or understanding game paradigms whatsoever. If anyone has the time, I'd like to hear some feedback, or requests. The information on the site will be presented in the form of a book and is always a work in progress. about/MakePCGames

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If you assume they have no programming knowledge at all, (Besides the fact you are using C++), shouldn't you be teaching the basics of variables, branch logic, functions, etc before giving them the entire source to a small game?

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He does assume basic familiarity with C++, but it's only mentioned somewhere in the middle. It should be mentioned right at the start. You should also clarify what "basic familiarity" means.

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Quote:
Original post by yaustar
If you assume they have no programming knowledge at all, (Besides the fact you are using C++), shouldn't you be teaching the basics of variables, branch logic, functions, etc before giving them the entire source to a small game?


Adding to this for the OP, I've noticed when writing tutorials or 'how-to' articles that assuming some basic knowledge is preferred. I tried to start my tutorials by assuming they knew nothing (I had steps to install Visual Studio and look at the environments and what the buttons do). But after awhile it seemed like I was taking away from the game development tutorials and turning into general programming. So, I'd suggest either assuming some basic programming knowledge, writing a seperate tutorial series on basic programming, or getting ready double your work load in that series.

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Writing effective tutorials for beginners.

How to write effective tutorials.

Writing tutorials is hard. Writing tutorials for beginners double so. The above links mention one problem you have as well, conflicting definitions. For example:
int main(int argc, char* argv[])
{
InitGame();
Play();
Destroy();
return 0;
}
and the tutorial says:

InitGame();
DoFrame();
DestroyGame();
This is enough to confuse someone trying to learn for a week.


But there's a very huge problem with it right now: It's missing the tutorial.

There's a lot of talk, but then there's suddenly source code, a screenshot, and The End. Where's the tutorial?


PS: #define and printf have no place in C++ tutorial. That alone is enough to cause many to start writing hate mail.

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The source code file you can download from the site is strict C, not standard C++. It might be a good idea to give the file a .c extension and clarify in your article that you present C, not C++ code.

I'm not talking about the fact that you don't use classes, templates, references etc - I mean the fact that you include the <*.h> instead of <c*> and don't refer to the std namespace. A standard C++ compiler will only compile this program if it has support for legacy C code.

It looks like a perfectly well-formed legacy C program and I'm not knocking it. I just feel it should not be misrepresented to beginners as C++ code in order to avoid confusing anybody.

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Antheus, if you had the interest in listening to what I said in the first post, you would notice that this is a constant work in progress. Please don't send me "how to" "tutorials". This is what I do, I am a writer.

[Edited by - gregsometimes on June 17, 2008 3:29:54 PM]

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Quote:
Original post by gregsometimes
EasilyConfused, I know the difference between C and C++.


Indeed. However, the beginners at whom your tutorial is addressed probably don't. I'd hope I was clear that I wasn't criticising your C code but merely suggesting you clarify this to your intended audience.

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