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      Download the Game Design and Indie Game Marketing Freebook   07/19/17

      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.


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  1. Take a look at Paint.net. I like it because Gimp and Photoshop have far too many features and I don't know how to use them very well. Paint.net is a lot slimmer but still very capable. It feels like MS Paint, but it has layers, transparency and other interesting features. Also, it's free!
  2. Just curious if anyone has ever used povray to develop graphical assets for their game. A friend of mine is currently enrolled on a povray course, using to for molecular models, and I looked into it. It's very interesting, and it creates great looking images. In my case, whenever I've tried to use blender to create a 3d image, the results are often less than satisfactory, but since in povray you don't 'sculpt' your image, but rather program it in code, I almost always get the result I want.   I'm still working with basic shapes and lighting, but so far I've made some interesting images:   https://imgur.com/4uSQ8Cl   https://imgur.com/ZDSlmg6   These might not be very impressive, but I made them a lot faster than I would've done in Blender. Also, I'm not sure about this, but I understand that since this is ray tracing, not 3d meshes, the spheres, cylinders and cones have real curves, and should look better.   So, is anyone using povray?
  3. I'll point you to Tom Sloper's FAQ about the videogame industry. At least for me it was a real eye opener. http://sloperama.com/advice.html   To get started on game programming, you don't even have to spend money. There are several free online tutorials that will help you become fluent in any language you choose, and to get started in game programming. You can check out:   - The official Python tutorial - Cpluplus.com (for C++ programming) - Lazy Foo's SDL tutorial - The SFML tutorial   Those sites could keep you entertained for a couple of months :D Of course, if you have no interest in C++, python, SDL or SFML, then you can look for learning material on your subject of choice. Do ask around in these and other forums for recommendations on which tutorial to use, because it's not always a matter of taste, and a lot of tutorials are really better than others.
  4. You could always take a look into RPG Maker XV. I got it pretty cheap at a Humble Bundle sale, and the Steam Winter Sale is bound to start soon :D There are a few successful commercial games made with it, "To the Moon" being a good example. If you're a complete beginner, it may be helpful to start with a tool that allows you to focus on making a game, which RPG Maker does. It comes with a few basic assets (Map tiles, character sprites, music, etc) with which you could build an entire game if you wanted.   I'd suggest you download the free Lite version and see if it would fit your project, and play around with it. Since you wnat to make an RPG, maybe it's not necessary that you reinvent the wheel (programming-wise) when there are already engines that can do the heavy lifting for you.
  5. Looks great to me, but then again, english isn't my first language either. Since it's fantasy, you can turn this into an advantage, as the dialogue may sound faintly foreign, different from the player's everyday speech.
  6. When I started out with visual games, I found both Lazy Foo's SDL tutorials and the official SFML tutorials to be very helpful. I think that maybe you should take a step back and forget for a second about making a game. You said that you are already capable of coding a decent game on console, so maybe you don't need to worry about game-related programming right now. Instead, set these simple goals:   - Create a window. - Keep that window running, and be able to close it. - Fill that window with color. - Display an image on this window. - Move the image through code. - Move the image through player input.   Each one would be a project by itself, that you could complete rather quickly (a couple of hours in most cases).   Once you are able to move a sprite arround with the keyboard arrows or the mouse, you'll already be able to explore a huge number of possibilities in game making.
  7. If you set out to do something like this, and choose python over php, remember to check if your webpage's host can handle python scripts. Also, this link contains information on web frameworks for python: https://wiki.python.org/moin/WebFrameworks
  8. If you go the C++ way, check out SFML and the tutorials on their webpage. If you know your way around general programming, you can build a very decent game in relatively short time.   Still, you shouldn't entirely discard the idea of working with a game engine. If you use Unity, you still have to do some programming in C#, but mostly for game logic, whereas in a project made from scratch you'd had to deal with all kinds of technical issues.
  9. Thank you both for the encouragement! I wil definitely take some time to really get into your answers. It may be evident now that my knowledge of vector math is poor, and I don't really know how to apply it. I'll read into that, as it seems it'll be far more useful than trigonometry for computer graphics.   About encapsulation, I'm still trying to get it right. I've struggled to grasp OO concepts, but it appears I'm not so far off now.   About optimization, well, I'll certainly take your suggestions into account. But maybe I'll wait a little before applying it, as it may turn a small concept program into a more complex, daunting task.   Thank you again!
  10. Hello! I'm not sure if this belongs here, or in the beginners' section, so excuse me if this code is too bad, or too basic.   I had set a short term goal for myself as an amateur programmer: To implement a hexagonal grid, similar to the one found in the original Fallout. You should be able to move your mouse around and the hexagon that contains the mouse pointer should be highlighted. I thought it would be a good exercise, because unlike a square grid, determining which hexagon contains the mouse pointer is trickier.   I did finish the program, and it does exactly what I want, but I do tend to overcomplicate things and I would appreciate it if people with more  experienced took a look at it and gave me any tips. This was coded in python with pygame. import pygame import math INITIAL_HEXAGON_VERTICES = ((-40,-40),(40,-40),(45,0),(40,40),(-40,40),(-45,0)) GRID_HEIGHT = 10 GRID_WIDTH = 10 VERTEX_COUNT = 6 X_ELEMENT = 0 Y_ELEMENT = 1 FIXED_ANGLE = 0.122 #7 degrees in radians NOT_MOVING = (0,0) def calculate_angle(fixed_point,var_point): opposite = math.fabs(fixed_point[X_ELEMENT] - var_point[X_ELEMENT]) adjacent = math.fabs(fixed_point[Y_ELEMENT] - var_point[Y_ELEMENT]) if adjacent == 0: adjacent = 0.1 angle = math.atan((opposite/adjacent)) return angle class Hexagon: def __init__(self,num,ver): self.number = num self.vertices = ver class InputManager: def check_events(self): for event in pygame.event.get(): if event.type == pygame.QUIT: game.running = False def mouse_in_grid(self,mouse_pos,hexagons): result = 0 for counter,hexagon in enumerate(hexagons): if (mouse_pos[X_ELEMENT] > hexagon.vertices[5][X_ELEMENT] and mouse_pos[X_ELEMENT] < hexagon.vertices[2][X_ELEMENT] and mouse_pos[Y_ELEMENT] >= hexagon.vertices[0][Y_ELEMENT] and mouse_pos[Y_ELEMENT] < hexagon.vertices[3][Y_ELEMENT]): result = hexagon.number if (mouse_pos[X_ELEMENT] < hexagon.vertices[0][X_ELEMENT] and mouse_pos[Y_ELEMENT] < hexagon.vertices[5][Y_ELEMENT]): angle = calculate_angle(hexagon.vertices[0],mouse_pos) if angle < FIXED_ANGLE: result = hexagon.number if (mouse_pos[X_ELEMENT] > hexagon.vertices[1][X_ELEMENT] and mouse_pos[Y_ELEMENT] < hexagon.vertices[2][Y_ELEMENT]): angle = calculate_angle(hexagon.vertices[1],mouse_pos) if angle < FIXED_ANGLE: result = hexagon.number if (mouse_pos[X_ELEMENT] > hexagon.vertices[3][X_ELEMENT] and mouse_pos[Y_ELEMENT] > hexagon.vertices[2][Y_ELEMENT]): angle = calculate_angle(hexagon.vertices[3],mouse_pos) if angle < FIXED_ANGLE: result = hexagon.number if (mouse_pos[X_ELEMENT] < hexagon.vertices[4][X_ELEMENT] and mouse_pos[Y_ELEMENT] > hexagon.vertices[5][Y_ELEMENT]): angle = calculate_angle(hexagon.vertices[4],mouse_pos) if angle < FIXED_ANGLE: result = hexagon.number return result class Game: def __init__(self,resolution,caption): self.screen = pygame.display.set_mode(resolution) pygame.display.set_caption(caption) self.clock = pygame.time.Clock() self.running = True self.gray = (220,220,220) self.green = (50,240,50) self.black = (0,0,0) self.hexagons = [] self.current_hexagon = 0 def draw_screen(self): self.screen.fill(self.gray) if pygame.mouse.get_rel() != NOT_MOVING: self.current_hexagon = input_manager.mouse_in_grid(pygame.mouse.get_pos(),self.hexagons) pygame.draw.polygon(self.screen,self.green,self.hexagons[self.current_hexagon].vertices,3) pygame.display.flip() def calculate_grid_points(self): number = 0 for column in range(GRID_WIDTH): for row in range(GRID_HEIGHT): points = [] lift_hexagon = 0 if column % 2 != 0: lift_hexagon = 40 for point in range(VERTEX_COUNT): points.append( ((INITIAL_HEXAGON_VERTICES[point][X_ELEMENT] + (85 * column)), ((INITIAL_HEXAGON_VERTICES[point][Y_ELEMENT] + (80 * row))-lift_hexagon) ) ) new_hexagon = Hexagon(number,points) self.hexagons.append(new_hexagon) number += 1 def main_loop(self,framerate): self.calculate_grid_points() while self.running: self.clock.tick(framerate) input_manager.check_events() self.draw_screen() pygame.quit() input_manager = InputManager() game = Game((800,600),"Game") game.main_loop(60) Thanks in advance!
  11. You can pick any engine you like, even if it doesn't support python. I say that because whatever you have learned in python so far will most likely be applicable in another language. Unity 3d, for example, uses either Javascript or C# as its scripting languages, and those aren't that different to python when it comes to the basic building blocks. Of course, there will be some learning involved, but if you already know how to solve problems through programming, then learning some new syntax and a slightly different paradigm isn't too hard.
  12. I found this site very helpful when I started learning C++. I hope it helps you too.   http://www.cplusplus.com/doc/tutorial/   Also, try out different IDE's. Choosing the one that feels most comfortable to you is crucial, because it makes the whole experience a lot less frustrating. Personally, I ended up using gedit and g++.   Good luck on your endeavors!
  13.   The point I'm trying to make is that these basic concepts are what a new programmer should be learning, and just like you said, they are very much alike between languages. It doesn't really matter is the OP starts out with Java or Javascript, learning these building blocks, and most importantly the reasoning behind them, will make the transition from one to the other painless.
  14. Well, I meant to say things like:   - How do statements end (semicolon or no semicolon) - How to write if's, for's and while's - Operators - Class and function definition   These are some differences between Python and C++   Python: #Statements need no semicolon print("Hello world!") #Function call. Arguments go inside parentheses. Strings go between quotes. x = 0 # Assignment operator #Structure of an IF if x == 0: # Comparison operators print("True") # Forced indentation for scope, no brackets. else: # Colon after if, elif, else print("False") list = [1,2,3,4] # Structure of a for loop for item in list: print(item) # Structure of a while loop while list[0] != 1: print("Looping...") # Function definition def foo(arg1, arg2): #keyword def, arguments between parentheses, colon -- code to run -- # Forced indentation # Class definition class Foo: def __init__(self): -- contructor code -- -- define more attributes methods -- C++ // Needs main function #include <iostream> using namespace std; // Statements need semicolons int main() { cout << "Hello World!" << endl; // Bitwise shift operator return 0; // Indentation is optional, brackets are necessary to indicate scope } int x = 0; // Assignment operator (strong-typed language, not syntax related, though) // Structure of an IF if (x == 0) { cout << "True" << endl; } else { cout << "False" << endl; } // For loop for (int i = 0; i < 10; i++) { // some code } // While loop while (variable == value) { // some code } // Function definition void Foo(int arg1, bool arg2) // starts with type, arguments between parentheses, also with type { // some code } // Class definition class Foo { int privateAttribute; // Attribute public: Foo() // Constructor { privateAttribute = 0; } } The examples might not be 100% accurate, but my point is that if you know what you're doing, syntax shouldn't be too much of a problem. How long did it take you to see the differences between the two blocks of code? And notice how syntax is consistent across the language, so the differences between a language and another tend to be consistent also.   A different thing is the actual use and logic of each language which can be extremely different, and it can take weeks or months to make the switch from one language to another.
  15. One of the benefits of using RPG Maker is that it has a Ruby-based script editor, though I'm not sure if it's also included in the lite version. With it, you can learn some basic programming, while developing an actual, playable game. Also, not trying to discourage you, but you'll realize just how massive a project an RPG truly is. Of course you can do it, even by yourself, but it's going to be hard work, and a long, long road before it's completed.   If you'd like to start programming with python, you should take a look at the tutorial on python's website. Make sure you understand every concept fully before moving on, and do lots of exercises! There's nothing worse than speeding through tutorials, since you won't remember much, and won't learn much either.