Jump to content
  • Advertisement
Sign in to follow this  
Adrastus

Start with AS3, C++, or other?

This topic is 3494 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

If you intended to correct an error in the post then please contact us.

Recommended Posts

Sorry for yet another post about which language is best for a beginner but after browsing over the other threads and topics I find myself wondering if I should start with ActionScript 3.0 or go right into C++ learning AS3 on the side as I go. I have several books on C++ that I've collected over the last two years and a book on ActionScript 3 that I just picked up last week (Visual Quickstart Guide to ActionScript 3.0). I plan on learning both and have started to learn C++ in the past but I always seem to hit this invisible brick wall that keeps me from continuing on with it. I kept getting sidetracked by something else that was going on at the time. Well, now I'm enrolled in the Art Institute of Pittsburgh (Web Design and Interactive Media program for about a year now) and I have plenty of time on my hands to learn a language. Despite the fact that I'll be moving on to the Information Technology and Computer Science program at Penn State I want to start learning programming now so I can get a bit of a jump on it. So, as the title says, should I start out with the ActionScript 3.0, go right into C++ again, or try another language such as Python as many have suggested on the site for beginners? I don't know anything about Python but I definately don't mind learning it (I plan on learning quite a few languages). Thanks for any help in advance and sorry for the long winded post. Jason

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Advertisement
I would really strongly recommend not starting with C++. I too hit a "brick wall" while trying to learn C++ back in high school. So my CS teacher had me learn Pascal instead. Then later I attempted C++ again and was much more confident and successful at it.

The problem is that by starting with C++, you have to learn two things at once:

1) How to program
2) How to deal with C++

And don't underestimate the difficulty of (2). C++ is a massive, complicated, beast of a language. It has grown organically over many years and suffers from a lack of consistent design. There are many, many ways to screw up while writing C++ code, and the unsafe nature of the language means that it often won't catch your mistakes. Sometimes you will write some bad code, but the program will actually run fine. Then you make a change in a completely different part of the program, and it causes the first error to crash. Situations like that are a nightmare to debug.

AS3 and Python are both great choices. If you're already leaning towards AS3, then stick with that. Making Flash games is pretty fun.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I guess it depends on what kind of programmer you are (or want to be), but I would guess ActionScript is the better candidate. I'm still amazed how much progress was made by the transition from AS2 to AS3. I really like it. It fairly easy to get something up and running (assuming you want to make games), it allows for publishing both for web and the traditional desktop, and it's fairly platform independent. I use it a lot for casual arcade games.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Try DarkBasic and their editor. Has basic language.
Then migrate into the c++ version of it, this removes bad habits of Basic language and gets you accustom to c++ e.g. the ";" at the end of lines was an issue for me at the very beginning, always forgot it.

JamesCobras

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks for the quick responses!

Looks to be that the consensus is to start out with something a little simpler so I'll go down the ActionScript 3.0 route before I enter into the C++ language.

The nice thing about ActionScript 3.0 is that I'll be able to create games quickly and I believe Adobe also uses the AS3 in their Flex and Air applications as well.

So, off to ActionScript 3.0 I go!

Wonder if there is an area for AS3 on the site...guess I'll go check it out.

Thanks again for all help.

Jason

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by WanMaster
I guess it depends on what kind of programmer you are (or want to be), but I would guess ActionScript is the better candidate. I'm still amazed how much progress was made by the transition from AS2 to AS3. I really like it. It fairly easy to get something up and running (assuming you want to make games), it allows for publishing both for web and the traditional desktop, and it's fairly platform independent. I use it a lot for casual arcade games.

Yeah, it's like going from VB6 to .net VB. At least that's what it reminded me of when using AS3 vs AS2. Starting with Actionscript or Python or even C# is a good choice.
And if you plan on programming for long count on learning a few languages at least!

p.s. Next time you tackle C++ make sure you get a decent book because it really can make the difference between hitting the so called C++ wall alot of people seem to run into;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Honestly, I would stay away from AS3 for right now unless all you are looking to make is flash applications. Flash applications might be fun, but you are very limited in functionality. If you want to learn something that you can easily publish on the web, learn C# with ASP.NET.

That out of the way, I would recommend (if you have never really learned the basics of 'programming') Python. It is very simple to learn considering the majority of the syntax is almost plain English, that and the fact that it has PythonIDLE, which has a console for you to actively test code (without having to compile).

I personally started learning programming through a very rigorous route of PHP. It's not really a programming language, but web server scripting, but it is fully object oriented and a lot of its syntax is easily derived from its application development buddies. After that I took a big swing at C++, wobbled and crashed, so then I learned how to program in Python. It really is an AMAZINGLY easy language to learn, and it is also the most productive language that I know. After that I started learning some of the basics of C#, hated it, and went back to C++. Now I feel that I'm fairly confident as a beginner of that language.

The last paragraph had 2 points. One was to demonstrate the authority of my opinion, and the other is to demonstrate how much easier it is to learn a language like C++ when you already have a good grasp of object oriented programming. I'm not trying to over ease you and say that C++ will be easy to learn, as you will still be learning a lot of concepts that languages like Python lack such as memory management, but I'm just trying to enlighten you with an 'easier' route.

As far as ActionScript, I STARTED learning Flash a few weeks ago, but have pretty much halted the process due to my work and school schedule (Working 40 hours plus taking college courses isn't quite as easy as I thought...). The only purpose I have with learning Flash and even ActionScript is because I'm a web developer (as mentioned earlier) and it's something that I have little to no experience at, but SHOULD.

Hope that helps a little.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Advertisement
×

Important Information

By using GameDev.net, you agree to our community Guidelines, Terms of Use, and Privacy Policy.

GameDev.net is your game development community. Create an account for your GameDev Portfolio and participate in the largest developer community in the games industry.

Sign me up!