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Nova8808

Where to start...

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I'm trying to get into game dev but there appears to be a big gap between 'beginning programming' and 'beginning game programming'. I have taken basic classes years ago (visual basic) and refreshed my memory learning some C# basics but then when I try to jump into 'beginning' game programming, I dont even know whats going on (which makes my think my basics arent very good at all).

I was gonna get this book but i'm reluctant now because it will probably be over my head. Should I get something more like this instead? I'm not 100% certain but i'm pretty sure I want to do C# and XNA (maybe UDK down the road).

So I guess my basic question is what resources should I use to get to a point where I can create simple games? I guess my fear is that if I focus too much on basic C# programming it wont be all that applicable when I move to game programming. Can I start from scratch (learning to program) right with game dev or will I have to have a firm grasp on basics first? That may sound silly but i'm only concerned with game programming and want to maximize my learning time efficiency by focusing solely on game dev.

I have a goal: basically to make an isometric action rpg/diablo clone. That may sound steep but if I could get a block man to run around and a blank platform and throw some simple projectile, I would be thrilled. Then I can take it from there :)

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well you shoud know that when you say "beginning game developing" the word beginning doesnt mean you can be a beginner, you need to have some serious understanding of Threads, classes, object oriented programming, and if you dont know all the basics you will find it so hard to start on game developing, im not saying its impossible, its just not the right order to follow, im just starting to join this game developing world, and even though i've been programmimg for like 3 years now, i still find some stuff really hard to understand, again im not saying you need to wait 3 years, even if it was 10 years it would still be hard because its really different from regular programming, so when you know the basics, i say you are good to go.

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I'm trying to get into game dev but there appears to be a big gap between 'beginning programming' and 'beginning game programming'. I have taken basic classes years ago (visual basic) and refreshed my memory learning some C# basics but then when I try to jump into 'beginning' game programming, I dont even know whats going on (which makes my think my basics arent very good at all).

I was gonna get this book but i'm reluctant now because it will probably be over my head. Should I get something more like this instead? I'm not 100% certain but i'm pretty sure I want to do C# and XNA (maybe UDK down the road).

So I guess my basic question is what resources should I use to get to a point where I can create simple games? I guess my fear is that if I focus too much on basic C# programming it wont be all that applicable when I move to game programming. Can I start from scratch (learning to program) right with game dev or will I have to have a firm grasp on basics first? That may sound silly but i'm only concerned with game programming and want to maximize my learning time efficiency by focusing solely on game dev.

I have a goal: basically to make an isometric action rpg/diablo clone. That may sound steep but if I could get a block man to run around and a blank platform and throw some simple projectile, I would be thrilled. Then I can take it from there :)


A game is a program. Learning programming fundamentals will serve you well towards your goal. The reason for the gap is that you have to know a great deal of concepts from a number of fields to be able to program games...

There are a good bit of C#/XNA tutorials on the internet that you can read to learn more about how to use XNA. Knowing the basics of C# will make understanding these tutorials easier as you will be able to identify which aspects relate to C# and which relate to XNA.

Start small. When I try to learn a new language I always try to set myself small challenges to solve that help me learn more about what I am doing.

For XNA and what you describe you might want to approach things like:

1. Make a new XNA project and get it running to prove your setup.
2. Draw a sprite to the screen from an image. (Teaches you about the content pipeline and drawing images)
3. Make the sprite move around using the arrow keys. (Teaches you how to respond to input and manipulate an objects position)
4. Figure out how to load a level file containing the platforms and draw them to the screen.
5. Figure out how to make the sprite fall with gravity and stop when colliding with a platform.
6. Refactor code (probably to use more OOP techniques).
7. Figure out how to make the screen scroll when the player moves.

Each of these tasks (well after the 1st) can be broken down more and each step can be improved upon.

Task 4 can apply concepts of arrays and loops, task 3 and 5 require variables, task 6 requires a knowledge of classes, and task 7 will require coordinate transformations.

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