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Being it's almost 2009, c# or c++ for casual game?

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I am comfortable with both languages and unfortunately have been away from game development for a few years. Is there still a good reason to use C++ over C# in casual game market? I'm not talking from developer's point of view, but from consumer's point of view. Is .Net 2.0 framework pretty well entrenched in Windows XP / Vista or is it still a burden to have to install for end user?

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Quote:
Original post by azherdev
Is .Net 2.0 framework pretty well entrenched in Windows XP / Vista or is it still a burden to have to install for end user?
Just bundle it with your installer, with the CLICK ONCE DEPLOYMENT option.

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I'm pretty sure it comes with Vista. Win XP users may still have to get it though.

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A lot of gamer's computers will already have the .NET framework by now, and it's not that much of a hassle to install if they don't. Pick whichever language you prefer as a developer and get to work!

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I'm trying to find if there are statistics as to the install base of .Net 2.0.

I understand that any of us can install it easily. But what about my mom that wants to play a tetris like game? How many moms will download a 10Meg game and then be hit up with a prompt to download something else called ".Net" and will be 20+ megs?

I deal in .Net a lot and therefore in a bubble of what an average consumer has. Not gamers who have 3 DVD Disc games.

Thanks for your nudges over to .Net. :)

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Well C++ does have the Playground SDK and the PopCap framework which are C++ casual game frameworks created by Playfirst and Popcap Games respectively. I personally use PopCap and it is a well tested framework for making casual games (Although Playground has some nice features).

With C#, I assume you would be using XNA. XNA is really nice and I enjoy working with it, but then your users will need the .NET framework and the XNA runtime as well as a graphic card that can support at the bare minimum shader model 1.1 afaik (which should be fairly standard by now though).

You have to remember that on average casual game players are not the most highly computer savvy customers, and it is important that the install process is simple... If they have to do a lot of installation steps because they are running on Windows XP Service pack 1.... Then they might get frustrated.

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Quote:
Original post by azherdev
I understand that any of us can install it easily. But what about my mom that wants to play a tetris like game? How many moms will download a 10Meg game and then be hit up with a prompt to download something else called ".Net" and will be 20+ megs?

So bundle it as a single 30 MB download. Anyone who can download 10 MB in a convenient amount of time can download 30 MB.

Seriously. Pick a language and get to work.

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I would lean to C++, purely because the distribution is marginally easier. Distribution makes a big difference to casual gamers, and you might be able to get away without an installer (or with just a quick DirectX update) with C++, static linked so everything's in the EXE. With C#, you risk having to get the .NET framework installed, which for a casual gamer might mean not bothering installing and moving on to the next game which 'just works'. If you want 10 minutes of light entertainment, you don't want that to be spent installing frameworks, and if you're still on dialup 30mb is a big deal.

It's a minor point and fast getting even less important, with the existing widespread distribution of the .NET framework, broadband, and if your game has a large filesize and installer already then you can shrug it off. But for quick, double-click-and-it-runs casual gaming, I think C++ has a slight edge.

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Look at all the successful casual games of 2008, categorize them according to programming language. Choose the one with the overwhelming majority of games written in it. That way you get something with a proven track record and which you know won't be the reason for an eventual failure. Otherwise you'll be asking yourself "what if".

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