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tapir

Would it be difficut to read a textbook on DirectX 8 and then program using DirectX 9 SDK?

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How much do the two versions differ? How are they different from each other?



Note:I know that the most recent version of DirectX is 11, but I would like for my game to be supported by Windows XP operating system, which hundreds of thousands of people still use.

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[quote name='tapir' timestamp='1298154485' post='4776459']
How much do the two versions differ? How are they different from each other?
[/quote]

The main difference is that DX9 supports the programmable pipeline (vertex and pixel shaders). If you have played a modern game, then you have seen what shaders can accomplish. I suggest you get a good book on DX9, such as [u]Intro to Game Programming with DirectX9, a Shader Approach[/u], by Frank Luna (which I'm currently reading), and just plain forget about DX8. As of DirectX10, support for the fixed function pipeline has been dropped, which means everything you learned in your DX8 book is nearly worthless.

At first, shaders may seem like more work, but stick with it. You'll be glad you did.

Good luck.

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They're not that different at all. D3D9 - at least so far as the fixed pipeline is concerned - is really not much more than a cosmetic upgrade to D3D8. You can port code from one to the other almost completely unchanged.

What I would recommend is getting a D3D9 book though, as the differences can be enough to confuse you at the start (SetSamplerState might completely throw you), but if you can't for whatever reason then working through the SDK tutorials side-by-side with a D3D8 book shouldn't be too difficult.

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[quote]I suggest you get a good book on DX9, such as Intro to Game Programming with DirectX9, a Shader Approach, by Frank Luna (which I'm currently reading), and just plain forget about DX8[/quote]

I second this, I'm currently reading the book too and it's brilliant.

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It's definitely highly advisable to read DirectX 9 books/tutorials from the start. Alot of functions have changed from 8 to 9 which could make starting out even more confusing for a new comer.
As well as the introduction of the programmable graphics pipeline already mentioned, alot of DirectX 8 books refer to Direct Input and Direct Play which aren't really used anymore.

If you don't want to invest in a new book just yet there is plenty of online tutorials to start of on,
http://www.twokings.de
http://www.drunkenhyena.com/cgi-bin/dx9.pl
http://www.directxtutorials.com

directXTutorials is fantastic although only the first few tutorials are free a premium membership is required for the later ones.
The other 2 are quite old sites and not updated anymore I believe but the tutorials still stand up and work great.

Good luck with it all, and have fun.

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[quote name='tapir' timestamp='1298154485' post='4776459']
Note:I know that the most recent version of DirectX is 11, but I would like for my game to be supported by Windows XP operating system, which hundreds of thousands of people still use.
[/quote]

Just some advice; use the latest version possible of any SDK you use. Seriously, your not going to make anything worth installing on anybody elses computer especially for niche markets if your just starting out with a graphics API and graphics programming in general. By the time you do start to make anything decent you will be up to date with current technologies and so will everyone elses OS's. If you still feel the need to learn Direct3D9 go ahead, but dont say I didnt warn you :) (part of being a programmer is about keeping up with the latest tech, constantly updating your ability to make yourself more attractive to prospective employers).

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