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craksy

Need practice

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alright i found a nice game engine (Esenthel) but i just doesn't feel experienced enough with C++ to make a 3D game like this yet. i am able to make some basic stuff, but i often run into problems especially with pointers and basic class/struct/scope issues. so... i thought some practice would be a good idea. i just don't know what to practice with. Basically i want to get better at pointers (which i still don't really understand) and structs/classes and building OOP based projects. I do have experience with OOP... just not with C++, and it's really a unique language. anyway i have no idea of what to start coding so i thought that you guys might be able to help me out a little. what would be a good project to start practicing with? it would be nice if it wasn't too boring... i mean even though it's just for practice it would be nice to be able to look at it when i'm done and be proud of it. so.. do you have any ideas/suggestions? i hope you can help me out :) thanks in advance xD -Craksy

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I strongly advise taking a game you already know well and is relatively small (say, breakout as the previous poster mentioned) and putting a twist on it. The reason for the twist is: it puts your 'clone' game a bit apart from others, it's more fun to make, and you can practice/display your creative side.

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thanks for the quick replies guys :)
i have never made anything 2D apart from flash, but as said, its C++ i want to practice to can you recommend me a 2D engine i can use?

in advance: Thanks :)

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I've been using SDL for all my 2D games and it is great.

In fact, breakout and reversi were my first two games with SDL, back when I first started learning C++.

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i don't know much about this, but isn't SDL just a graphics library, like DirectX but for 2D?
wont i need an engine too?
or..
i have the environment set up, but i have no idea what to do next :P
could you point to a few resources for learning SDL? :P

thanks a lot :)

-Craksy

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My advice: banish the word "engine" from your vocabulary for a while. I don't see it as being a particularly helpful term for beginners to think in terms of, and it frequently gets people (myself included) caught into a "the engine is as or more important than the game mentality." Furthermore, "engine" is a poorly defined word and people can waste large quantities of time trying to figure out whether something should be in the "game" or the "engine" or if it's just a "library" or "framework", etc. Most importantly, there's no benefit to making a distinction between game and engine for an individual doing a learning project.*

For your purposes SDL or SFML (my personal favorite, but somewhat lacking on the beginner documentation) is as much of an "engine" as you need.

*I should add that there is a benefit to making a distinction between, say, graphics code and game logic, or physics handling and input response. I just don't think there's a need to be able to point at some code and say "engine" and point at the rest and say "game."

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Quote:
Original post by craksy
i don't know much about this, but isn't SDL just a graphics library, like DirectX but for 2D?
wont i need an engine too?
i have the environment set up, but i have no idea what to do next :P
could you point to a few resources for learning SDL?

Remember the first 'S' in SDL: Simple. So it will basically allow you to blit images to the screen, audio, keyboard, mouse, and joystick. As far as 'engine' goes, you basically code this stuff yourself. Don't worry you can start with basic things and add more features and functionality as you need them.

If you have zero experience with making 2D games with SDL and C++, you may want to try the following basic 'game':

1. Get a sprite on the screen. Understand how to blit an image to the screen.
2. Take input (keyboard) from the user and move the sprite around the screen.
3. Add other sprites like coins or something and let the player collect them -> collision detection. When a player collects the rings, increase the score, etc.

From there you can build up yr knowledge, but this is a first easy game just to let you to play around with the basic building blocks of using sdl.

A decent tutorial set is Lazy Foo SDL tutorials. Also check out SDL Documentation. It may look daunting at first, but honestly just read it over and use it as a reference source as you progress. It explains all the things SDL can do.

Good luck.

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