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WiredDrummer

Hello and some questions!

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Hello everyone! I just joined you here at gamedev and I did it because I've always wanted to 'make' a game. I'm currently studying Informatics and Computer Engineering but, needless to say, I haven't learnt anything, so far, that can lead me straight into the game making path. In high school, I decided to learn some C++ and worked with flash, but nothing to big. Anyway, all this just to give you a little perspective of what I might know. So, I'll just move straight to the topic itself. What do you think I should do for starters? As in what language should I 'focus' on and what to try first?

Anymore doubts, just ask!

Cumps,

WiredDrummer.

EDIT: Also, I've read this Guide, but I'm still not sure what to follow :x

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What do you think I should do for starters? As in what language should I 'focus' on and what to try first?

Make a list of all the languages that you know of (C#, Java, C++, Actionscript/Flash, Python, etc.) on a paper. But make sure you place them in random locations on the paper. Then, pin the paper up on the wall and start throwing darts at it. The language you hit first is the one you focus on.

Basically what I'm trying to say is it doesn't really matter. Over the course of your life/career in the computer industry, you will learn multiple programming languages and APIs. So don't feel like you'll pick the "wrong" one. There isn't a "wrong" one. They're just tools.

If you feel comfortable in a certain language right now, I suggest sticking with it. If, however, you don't really know any programming languages right now (I know you mentioned C++ and Flash, but I don't know how much you remember, if anything at all), my personal recommendation would be C# (assuming you're on a Windows environment). But whatever you pick be sure to learn the language before you get into doing the graphics/game side of things. All of these programming languages have wonderful tools to help people make games. But to be honest, you won't be able to properly use a tool in a language you don't know, so be sure to start from the ground up. It might sound like it'll take longer and be slower, but trust me, learning the language before moving onto the APIs will actually improve your learning speed and progress.

Hope that helps, feel free to ask any other questions you might have!

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Thank you for replying!

I understand what you mean when you say to throw darts at them because I've seen my course classes and I will be having different languages so, what I choose now, wont be an 'error'. As for the language itself, I don't remember much from C++ neither Flash.. According to that guide, and your opinion, I'll be learning C# as it seems the recommended. And don't worry about skipping ahead hehe. I will learn the language before adventuring into deeper things. I like to jump to the finish line without running the course, but I will not do that this time. Again, thanks for the help. Do you have any ideas about where I should start learning? Tutorials, websites, books, etc..

Cumps,

WiredDrummer.

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Learn the language first. The exact language chosen doesn't matter all that much. I'd recommend continuing in the language you currently feel strongest in. If there is no such language, I'd recommend stating out with C# or Python. I would recommend against C++. C++ was designed with the mindset "the programmer is always right". This is certainly not true for beginners, and rarely true in general.

Learning the language means writing lots of programs. If you have a good book, do all the exercises.

Once you've got a good grasp on the language start, write a simple game. The text game "guess the number" if necessary. Then Tic-Tac-Toe or Hangman. You can write a text RPG if that interests you. These will introduce you to the basic structures underneath almost all computer games.

Then you can progress to graphics. Depending on the language you choose, you might need to learn an external API for creating graphics. Pong is a typical starter graphical game.Later you can make Breakout, Tetris, games of increasing difficulty.

The main thing is to scale each project after you finish the proceeding one. You want to be pushing yourself a little every time. Reaching too far can be an interesting challenge at first, but my experience when learning is that I got frustrated and more often than not abandoned my complex projects.

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I would start by reading the Beginners FAQ. But basically you need to start with the most basic idea's and eventually the games will get more and more complex. You can just jump into something crazy but in the end it will take you forever and you will not actually learn anything. So with that in mind, the games people usually remake (or a game with relatively the same complexity) people will do are;
Guess a number
Tic tac toe
pong/tetris
pac man
platformer
side scroller
and so on.

Than you move into 3D development generally. In my opinion and that of many other people's, you are best starting off in 2D and working up to 3D. I personally started in 3D and was struggling like crazy with the math etc and it took me hours to do the most simplest thing. After moving to 2D I was able to actually make a game and feel like I was learning something. Now I can crank out fun 2D games with relative ease.

Best of luck.

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Thanks for the replies! I was a bit down when I started learning C#, because it didn't seem as simple as C++ when I first started learning it, but now I found a good book and it's actually a good book lol (and it simplier than C++). I've read the first chapter and did the exercises they asked for and guess what, I did alright. It's a good feeling. So now I'm reading the rest of the book and trying to do the exercises at the end of each chapter. As soon as I feel I know enough, I'll start writing some simple games (like the ones you examplified). And will definitely try 2D before 3D. Trying to progress by jumping important 'parts' will only disencourage (at least, that's what I get from real life experiences). Once again, thanks for the tips!

Cumps,

WiredDrummer.

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