By Gabriel Gonzalez
Hi everyone, my name is Gabriel and this is my first post here. I graduated from college over three years ago with a degree in Physics and now I want to start a career as a gameplay programmer. Besides a single C++ programming class in college I have not had any prior experience programming. What I have done to learn until now is to use SFML to recreate Arkanoid and Space Invaders. My question is, am I on the right track if I just continue creating games from scratch using libraries such as SFML or would I benefit more if I move on to using an engine such as Unreal or Unity? Also, of how much help (if any) would my degree be when trying to join a team? I live in San Diego, CA if that matters at all. I do appreciate in advance any guidance anyone could offer me.
Hello all! I'm new to the forum and I'm glad to have found a lot of interesting discussions/topics!
Quick intro, I'm currently in school for Independent (indie) Video Game Design, on my last semester and the job search will start in less than 4 months (I'm nervous to say the least). I've learned a lot in school and I'm proud to say that I can make a decent game independently and market it properly. The problem is that I can do all of this, but I don't specialise in anything specific. I'm pretty good at modeling (but definitely not a pro, can only make simple clean models), okay at scripting, design isn't my strength but a big interest and I'm pretty okay at UI/UX but definitely not proficient at all.
I can't say I specialise in any of the above fields and I know that specialising in something is important in order to have a consistent portfolio and finding a job.
Should I focus on specialising on a specific field in the next 4 months (practice 24/7) in order to sell myself to employers or should I practice everything and sell myself as a Jack-of-all-trades? I really want to get a designer job as I enjoy writing GDDs and discussing design during Pre-Production but my Rational Design knowledge is weak and I've never been considered a designer in all my previous projects (always was responsible for art or UI).
By Giusto Piedimonte
Hi everyone, my name's Giusto and this is my first post in this forum
First of all sorry for my english but i'm from italy so i might go wrong in some words
I would like to start programming games, like a lot of people, but i would like to program them litterly and not using something like Unity even if i know it would help a lot
So my question is simple, which language should i learn? I know that C++ is used a lot as well as java
Where could i learn some function or things based on games
I listen to all hint that you give me, thank you for reading all this, this means a lot for me
By Philippe Vaillancourt
tldr: This is a community project to help aspiring solo game developers and designers, through small assignment projects, gain the knowledge and skills required to make a video game. If you are interested in contributing to the discussion, head to https://github.com/Neoflash1979/learn-gamedev/issues.
The problem with tutorials
With the number of great courses, tutorials and other learning resources found online, more and more people teach themselves programming. Many will do so with the intent of making video games. But there is much more to designing and making video games than mere programming.
Animation, anthropology, architecture, brainstorming, business, cinematography, communication, creative writing, economics, engineering, games, history, management, mathematics, music, psychology, public speaking, sound design, technical writing, visual arts AND programming; knowledge and skills in these areas can be invaluable to a game designer/developer. Thankfully, there is an abundance of resources available online that can help one acquire knowledge and skills in each of these areas individually. But for the aspiring solo dev, it’s not just a matter of acquiring knowledge in these areas, it’s also important to understand how to use all of that together, for the express purpose of making a video game.
There is a plethora of tutorials available online that will guide you from A to Z on how to make such or such a game. In the process you will acquire a certain amount of technical knowledge, and that’s great. But you won’t really learn about the process of designing and developing a video game. The same can be said about the numerous lists that tells you the type of games you should be making, and in what order, in order to learn gaming making; first you make a Breakout clone, then you make a Tetris clone, then you make a Mario clone, then you make Wolfenstein 3D clone, etc. Again, this kind of advice will help you progress in certain technical skills, but you won’t have learned all that much about the process of designing and developing a video game.
Making a video game is about making decisions. When you follow tutorials, or clone an existing game, the decisions are largely already made for you. To really learn to design and develop video games, you have to build them, from scratch, on your own (or with a friend or two). All aspiring game dev/designer realizes this at some point and so sets out to build their first game. Their REAL first game. One where THEY have to decide, design and build EVERYTHING. And that’s where everything goes to sh*t.
Making video games is hard
You see, making a video game is hard. I mean, REALLY making a game, from scratch. It is a daunting task and it can be overwhelming. So naturally, you turn to Google, and you learn expressions like “scope”, “minimum viable product”, “rapid prototyping”, “find the fun” and “start small”. All those two minutes videos and articles are very enlightening but in the end, it’s still very hard to understand how to keep a small scope when you have never REALLY made a game and you are invariably imbued with grand game-making aspirations. How small is small? What aspects of game making should I focus on? How many hours should I invest in making that first game? Those are just a few of the questions that an aspiring game dev/designer might have.
Despite all the great resources out there for learning all the bits and pieces involved in designing and making a game, there is a complete void in terms of helping aspiring dev learning to put it all together in a progressive, manageable, way. What we, aspiring self-taught devs, are missing is a guide. Something that will guide us, progressively, on our game making path. Something that will help us focus on the right things, at the right time, while we progress on our learning journey – “yeah, maybe you should leave researching the use of Octrees in collision avoidance AI for later and first focus on figuring out how to make that white ball go from point A to point B, Phil”.
What we really need are assignments, with deadlines and requirements. Oddly enough, if your Google “game making assignments” you will find a few examples of exactly what we need, but only for board games, or children Phys Ed games. Here is an example: http://www.cobblearning.net/kentblog/files/2015/11/Project-27w5me1.pdf
This is exactly what we need. Exercises that help us focus our creativity and give us a set of guidelines, requirements and constraints. Allowing us to make MOST or at least MANY of the creative and technical decisions that go into making a game, while at the same time ensuring that we keep the scope small and that we focus on a few new concepts/skills. Every assignment would, gradually, expose the learner to new and more advanced concepts/skills, expanding the scope a little, culminating in a final, 2 to 6-month-long assignment where the learner is really making a game he can be proud of and call his own. Alas, this resource does not exist. At least I have found it. So, let’s do something about it.
I propose that we create an open-source project on Github and create a “Game development and design self-education” curriculum. Basically, a list of game making assignments that would guide an aspiring game dev through the process of learning the required skills, methods and processes required to put a game together. The onus would be on the aspiring game dev to find the resources needed to learn the creative and technical skills required to meet each assignment’s requirements. If you are interested in contributing to the discussion, head to https://github.com/Neoflash1979/learn-gamedev/issues.
So, I asked for advice on game engines. I know this is asked here ALL the time. I am reading the posts. However, there are so many engines, how does one choose? They all have their own pros and cons depending on one's needs, budget, and genre of game. Is the idea just to choose one and learn from there?
Here is a list that I compiled.
GameSalad App Game Kit Corona Godot Buildbox Construct 2 and 3 Clickteam Fusion 2.5 RPG Maker Stencyl GameMaker Studio 2 GameGuru Monogame/XNA CopperCube 5 Torque Leadwerks Unity ChilliWorks Clickteam Fusion Cocos libGDX Trublenz V-Play
I am very new here and new to actually starting to develop games. I realize what I am embarking on is probably going to be many years in the making. It is not something I haven't considered before. I recall wanting to make my own game as a child when I read about a contest in Nintendo Power. The winner of this game was J. Scott Campbell who went on to draw for comic books.
I think a lot of people who play games wax philosophic about what they would like to see in a game. But I digress.
I want to start with a 2D game and I have been reading here and on other websites about the best engine/software to use for newbies who do not have a lot of programming experience. The issue is I read similar and conflicting information on websites, so I thought I would ask people who have used them.
I know Game Maker Studio is popular, but I am not fond of the high price add-ons for export. I don't know if I am being picky or limiting myself.
Unity seems to be an option but I am new to this so I certainly would need the Plus option rather than Pro; however, I read that Unity's 2D uses the 3D engine and that makes 2D game clunky, buggy, and bloated. Is this true? I don't know what perks the free version has.
There are Defold and Godot as well as a bunch of other free development tools, but I am unsure how many require a lot of programming knowledge. I hear App Game Kit is a bit program heavy. And I don't hear a lot about Guru.
I plan to learn programming as I go along over the years, but for now, I want to see how well I can do and how much patience I will have.
There are a host of engines out there. Some are free and some are not. I don't know what is best to start on especially if I want to eventually export to platforms other than PC. Ultimately, one has to try some out to know what is best.
Since I am new, is exporting to multiple platforms putting the cart before the horse? Is this something I should worry about later?
I read some posts that answer similar questions, and I plan to read more. I just wanted to ask my own question here.
Any direction or advice would be appreciated.