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      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.

rob_hays

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  1. [quote name='scniton' timestamp='1341866658' post='4957408'] I think rnlf makes the shader route sound more daunting than it really is. There is no need to try to create a pure opengl 3.0 non-deprecated demo on the first try. There is a natural progression you can take to go from pure fixed pipeline to pure non-deprecated functionality e.g.:[list] [*]Start with a simple opengl "Hello world" style program [*]Change it so that it uses the programmable pipeline using trivial shaders. [*]Convert it to use vertex arrays. [*]Convert it to using vertex buffer objects [*]Create your own matrix management routines along side the fixed pipeline ones (this allows you to verify your routines) E.g. Using glLoadMatrix to easily switch between the matrices used. [*]Modify the shader so that you upload the matrix using something like glUniformMatrix* and only use your matrices* [*]etc. [/list] * If you are aiming for pure non-deprecated. There are some basics you'll want to learn regardless of which route you choose: colors, normals, textures, transformations, etc. Whether you learn these basics using the fixed function pipeline or shaders won't matter, it is a small step to go from one to the other. This being said, once you understand the basics there is no reason to deal with the fixed function pipeline. Beyond the basics, IMO, effects become more complicated to implement using the fixed function pipeline, and sometimes require dealing with opengl extensions (not a big deal, but more annoying than not having to do it.) [/quote] Thanks for the the responses everyone. I do have a grasp on 3D vector math and basic linear algebra, but is there some intermediary skill I'm supposed to learn about before jumping into OpenGL? I guess what I mean is if I'm pretty well-versed in C++ and those maths, are there any other bodies of knowledge that would be considered prerequisite to being successful in OpenGL? I won't say I'm an expert in C++, but I do know my way around it. Should I hold off on OpenGL until I have measurable experience with C (as I understand it, GLSL is essentially C-like), or is C++ knowledge enough to get me started in OpenGL? Thanks
  2. Hello, [size=4][background=transparent]I'm currently going to college for computer science. Although I do plan on utilizing an existing engine at some point to create a small game, my aim right now is towards learning the fundamentals: namely, 3D programming. I've already done some research regarding the choice between DirectX and OpenGL, and the general sentiment that came out of that was that whether you choose OpenGL or DirectX as your training-wheels platform, a lot of the knowledge is transferrable to the other platform. Therefore, since OpenGL is supported by more systems (probably a silly reason to choose what to learn), I decided that I'm going to learn OpenGL first.[/background][/size] [size=4][background=transparent]After I made this decision to learn OpenGL, I did some more research and found out about a dichotomy that I was somehow unaware of all this time: fixed-function OpenGL vs. modern programmable shader-based OpenGL. At first, I thought it was an obvious choice that I should choose to learn shader-based OpenGL since that's what's most commonly used in the industry today. However, I then stumbled upon the very popular [b]Learning Modern 3D Graphics Programming[/b] by Jason L. McKesson, located here: [url="http://www.arcsynthesis.org/gltut/"]http://www.arcsynthesis.org/gltut/[/url][/background][/size] [size=4][background=transparent]I read through the introductory bits, and in the "About This Book" section, the author states:[/background][/size] [quote]"First, much of what is learned with this approach must be inevitably abandoned when the user encounters a graphics problem that must be solved with programmability. Programmability wipes out almost all of the fixed function pipeline, so the knowledge does not easily transfer."[/quote] yet at the same time also makes the case that fixed-functionality provides an easier, more immediate learning curve for beginners by stating: [quote]"It is generally considered easiest to teach neophyte graphics programmers using the fixed function pipeline."[/quote] [size=4][background=transparent]Naturally, you can see why I might be conflicted about which paradigm to learn: Do I spend a lot of time learning (and then later unlearning) the ways of fixed-functionality, or do I choose to start out with shaders? My primary concern is that modern programmable shaders somehow require the programmer to already understand the fixed-function pipeline, but I doubt that's the case.[/background][/size] [size=4][background=transparent][b]TL;DR[/b] = As an aspiring game graphics programmer, is it in my best interest to learn 3D programming through fixed-functionality or modern shader-based programming?[/background][/size]