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On learning DirectX....

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I''m considering learning DirectX programming. Should I purchase a book that covers DirectX 7.0a, or go ahead and purchase one (literally only one, as far as I can tell) that covers DirectX 8.0? The only reason I hesitate to go for 8.0 is title of the book covering it, Beginning Direct3D Game Programming. I''m more interested in 2D programming, and I assume that the aformentioned book covers 3D. However, I also hear that DX 8.0 takes away directdraw and stuffs it''s functionality into direct3d... I guess you can see my quandry suggestions would be appreciated.

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The only book on the market at this time is "Introduction to Computer Game Programming With DirectX 8.0" but before you buy it read the reviews on amazon and you will find that this book does not deal with dx8 at all - it only deals with dx7!

As you say in your post, directdraw has been dropped from dx8 but the 2d capabilities has not. There is a sprite engine within DX8 that makes it simple to draw quadrilateral sprites. The concepts are a bit different from dx7 but the results will be the same.

My view is that if you are learning DX then you should start at the latest version available ie DX8. If you start at DX7 then you are going to learn a lot of stuff which will be redundant and you will find yourself relearning all over again for dx8. In any case, possibly you are only interested in 2d stuff just now but I''m sure that after a bit of experience with 2d stuff you will be ready to move into the world of 3d and then it would be just silly to stick with dx7.

I hope this is constructive for you,

henry

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I bought a book on DirectX 6 (back when 6 was most recent). While the book was fairly well written and informative, overall it was a waste. DirectX 7 completely outdated the book before I even finished it. It's honestly not that hard of an API to learn, and ultimately your better off learning it from MSDN and Internet resources, where you can find the most recent stuff. Also books have to cover a LOT of stuff in one measily 1000 page book, so unless you get a book specifically on one of the DirectX APIs like DirectDraw or DirectSound,etc, you will only be given the basics, something that you might as well just learn from a net tutorial. My book has nothing on all the little intricate matters surrounding DirectX APIs, and I've already written code much faster/more efficient than the stuff in the book.

Books are great for things that will remain mainly the same such as computer langauges but for an API that has a new version every year (actually sometimes more), it's honestly a waste. Learn it from the web, it not only has all the info you need, you will be improving your programming research skills, which are essential. Eventually you will find you are not able to keep up with using all the new technology if you need a book (which takes forever to come out after the technology) instead of just a reference and if your lucky, a quick tutorial. Save your money and buy yourself a REALLY nice lunch

Resist Windows XP's Invasive Production Activation Technology!

Edited by - LordElectro on June 10, 2001 6:44:51 PM

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Henry is TOTALY wrong - there is another book about DX8 - "Beggining Direct3D Game Programming" - part of LaMothe''s Game Development series. It is a very good book as a DX intro - does have some probs however. It uses the DX Common Files Framework, which is all C++ classes. If you don''t grasp C++, this book will most likely lose you, there is a primer in the appendix though. Second, the pace is very fast and it is possible to get left behind. In general - it will get you up to speed.

Also - the sprite classes are very useful to use. However, I recommend going 3D and just fixing your camera angle. You can fake ISO very easy this way.

Landsknecht

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