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StevenSteffen

C++ Graphics

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Hello, I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions for 3d graphics in C++. I am adept at programming and have done some light dabbling in XNA game studio, but I would like to try making a simple c++ game since a lot developers I have seen use it. I actually learned my programming on C++ but haven't messed with it for over two years, so it is something of a refresher. My end goal (as in years down the road) is a light 2-3 player online rpg so I can play with winsock programming. Please note I am NOT trying to make an MMO or anything...I dont want to kill myself, just give myself something for both game development and networking portfolios. thank you

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Start with something really simple.

Build Tetris in 2D while you are adjusting back to C++.

Build Tetris in 3D to ease yourself into it slowly.

As for what API to use, you have lots of choices. I'll throw my biased vote at SDL and OpenGL because it's always pleasant when games are cross-platform. Plus, you can build 2D games in just SDL and then work your way into 3D using OpenGL (which sits on top of SDL).

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Thanks for the quick reply TheBuzzSaw.

I do have one quick question about SDL that may sound stupid. Are there by any chance any hardware limitations with SDL and OpenGL? I know I have seen some games that use OpenGL that dont like ATI graphics cards.

I am a total newbie at game development and just want to make sure there wont be any weird problems when I try to use SDL and OpenGL.

thanks again.

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In the past ATI's opengl drivers haven't been all that good. I am not sure what their current state is, I have heard they have improved. It shouldn't be that big a deal more corner case stuff than big show stoppers.

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When you get to 3D you might want to look into a 3D engine like Ogre3D. It will save you a lot of the details around math and resources, and still provide a pure C++ interface.

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I generally run Nvidia cards, so I cannot speak for ATI, but SDL works fine across the board. My laptop has an embarrassingly bad Intel graphics accelerator, but SDL games work fine (unless they're coded poorly). I don't know all the physical limits of SDL, but I do know it works on almost all hardware.

I recommend doing 2D first so that you have time to adjust building an engine (dealing with timing issues, CPU usage, etc.). 3D will come naturally as you study it.

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