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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.

Benjamin Jimenez

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  1. Native C/C++ (without any MS's MFC additions) compile to the native PE executable format.   I'm not sure what compiling to .net has to do with anything really.   what I was trying to say is that in general Visual studio is designed so that a programmer can program in the language he is comfortable with and still produce the same type of .net compiled code. I'm sure you can do other types of compiles, but I was just saying in general. It all comes down to what someone can understand and a beginner should start off easy and then move on to harder languages. 
  2. Hi,   Here is a tutorial that looks like it can help you get started.   http://xbox.create.msdn.com/en-US/education/catalog/sample/roleplaying_game
  3. Hi,   If you want to make a "high quality" game then you will  have to use a high quality tool. I recommend using a tool that will allow you to use DirectX 11 on Windows. Since this is the same type of power that Pro game companies use to make games like COD, Battlefield, etc. The programs that I know for sure allow this are Visual Studio C++ and Unity 3D. You can make impressive 2D games with both these tools. As far as using Javascript you should know that it will not be able to produce the same type of graphics as a C++ or Unity3D game.    Read this   "WebGL Limitations As for limitations, theoretically WebGL makes use of the same video drivers that are used by any desktop OpenGL application running on your machine. With that said, it is important to note that WebGL is essentially OpenGL ES 2.0 which imparts a few limitations compared to standard OpenGL. For more information regarding OpenGL ES, you can refer to Wikipedia Another limitation is your capability to reach a wide audience. Internet Explorer does not support WebGL (for obvious competitive reasons with regard to DirectX/3D). In addition, there is the fact that WebGL applications are running a JavaScript engine, as opposed to a natively compiled desktop application. While Chrome's V8 engine has made incredible progress in improving JavaScript's performance, it is still going to be slower than a native app. For a more in-depth analysis of these challenges and others, see: WebGL Challenges In Summary WebGL is based on OpenGL ES 2.0, which is a slightly feature-reduced version of OpenGL. It also runs on top of a JavaScript engine, which is slower than native code. WebGL isn't equally supported or standardized between different web browsers. Aside from the limitations imparted by the above, WebGL is capable of rendering nearly anything your GPU can render in a desktop application with the possibility of reduced performance. " So as you can see Javascript is limited to a version of OpenGL. I'm not sure if Flash games can use DirectX 11, but a quick search with Google didn't help me find any information that said it could. So if you want to learn to make 2D games and don't care about using the latest graphics capabilities on a PC, then you can stick with Javascript, Java, or Flash. If you want to eventually learn to make some bad ass FPS with amazing graphics then you will have to learn to program in C++ or learn to use Unity3D or another program that can allow you to use the latest DirectX        
  4. I don't get it, it is all texted based? whats your target audience? why does it run itself?
  5. Honestly I don't think you have to put all this money into a studio. Especially if you have no clue if you are going to get it back. You could of worked remotely with your 3D artist and met up once or twice a week to go over things. It's always a good rule (I think) to make sure you have money coming in before you try to go big. I think you should of kept your overhead small and your development time long. Unless you can really afford to waste $6000 a month. If so, then what the hell, there is only money to lose right?  Another thing I see is that you have no experience using the already available 3D engine software out there. That is scary to me. Have you even tried to make a visit to a local game developer (company) in your area to see just how one is run? I would strongly suggest that if it's possible.I do wish you good luck, and if you do finish a game, please post a link so I can check it out. 
  6. Hi,   If you are having trouble learning JAVA, it's not a bad idea to start with BASIC. That's what BASIC was designed for anyways. To help people who have never programmed to learn the basics of programming. JAVA, C++, etc. are languages that you can learn later. I can tell you that today's BASIC is in most cases far from the BASIC that was first introduced long ago. In some cases like Visual Studio no matter what language you program in it all compiles to the same code (.net). So it just comes down to what you can understand. If you can't understand JAVA right now, learn BASIC and then move on once you are comfortable. I also tried to learn JAVA at one time, but then I went to BASIC and have pretty much stayed there ever since. 
  7. I recommend learning a programming language first, since you can get the most power into your game, but If you don't want to learn a programming language go with Unity. It's by far the best software for someone who wants to make a FPS, but who does not have a full understanding of how to program a 3D game on their own. There are plenty of tutorials that can help you make 3D and 2D games. If you want to start off really basic, then maybe try GLBASIC, it's a BASIC programming language that allows you to make 3D games for Windows, Android, IPhone, etc. using a simple BASIC language.
  8. I myself have been trying to complete a game for some time (years), but I always seem to want to do everything myself, but then I end up not finishing anything. It frustrates me. So I took a step back and decided to simplify everything so that I can actually have a chance to complete something. I think that this is what you should do. Think about the fact that the game you want to make is requiring you to hire a programmer. So what you've already decided is that your project is already too much for you. Maybe think about putting your current game idea aside for now and trying to work on a smaller game that you can actually make on your own. You have to understand that Indie games are not about game content , but rather about the game play itself. Look at Flappy Bird for instance. Only one level, and one objective, don't fly into anything. This is the route I'm going, i'm keeping it simple. My reason for this is that if I can make some income from a small game (mobile type) then I can use that money to invest in another bigger project and also get some experience along the way. I'm willing to work with you to make a game in what ever programming language you want, but if we work together lets start small and then go after a big project.
  9. Hi,   Properly planning a game takes time to learn on your own. It can be one of those things that a programmer has to  experience to understand. Unless you have worked for a large company who would obviously have a structure in place on how a game is designed. For an Indie developer this can seem complicated once your game code starts to get over a few hundred lines of code. What I've learned from my game design attempts is that you have to try to separate each part of the game into sections. Try to keep different areas of your game code organized so that if you need to update one area you can do it easily. It's kind of like writing a book. You have to learn how to put it together so that it's organized and well written. Other programmers always say to make sure to put lots of notes in your code so that if someone else needs to update it later they can easily get an understanding how your game code works. This can also help yourself when you need to come back and make changes.          
  10.   I would go for Unity3D . It is easy to learn the basics and also has power for later when you become more experienced with it. It is high priced for the pro version, but it is well worth it. It's been used by companies to make some AAA games. It has lots of power and anything you want to do in a game can be done with it.
  11. Hi,   I would say that it depends on what type of game you are going to make. If your day job will keep you from devoting more than a few hours a week to your project you might want to create a game that can be released with just a few levels and later you can update to add more levels. Any type of game that requires allot of work developing the story or 3D levels might be off the table if your time is limited. As far as what platform to release your game on I would say go mobile, since smaller games can do better on mobile devices. Good luck.
  12. Hi,   My advice to you is dream big, but start small. You don't have to make copy cat games to learn how to make a game, it's a good idea, but why waste time on that when you can be working on your own game? First thing I suggest is to really finish up the basic idea of your game. Don't spend time thinking about updates, patches, mods, and hiring 100 graphic artists. That stuff will happen when the time is right, or not at all. What most of us beginning game makers don't realize is that we can't chase the big dreams at the start. Chase the little dreams first. Think of your game as a baby, and you need to watch it grow, how ever slow or fast it needs too. Don't waste lots of time on a game that may not even be a hit. Get a small working version of the game together, then release it into the wild to see if anyone even likes it. Graphics do not matter in a new game, did you hear that part? graphics do not matter at all. Don't worry about that in the beginning. Just put something together to get a feel for the game play itself, since that is what makes a game good or bad. The graphics can always be improved later.    Depending on what type of game you are making that will determine your development environment. For 2D games you can use XNA game studio or gamemaker, If you want to go 3D I would suggest Unity3D for a beginner because you can setup most of the level without too much coding. A cool thing you can do with Unity3D is make a 3D game look like a 2D game. They have just released a new update with new tools for making 2D games. There are lots of tutorials to do different things on YouTube that will help you out. Another great thing about Unity3D is that you can code the game once and release it for most platforms, like Xbox, Android, IOS, etc. This will save you lots of time. Graphic artist can easily import 3D models into Unity too.    well that's my advice for you , hope it helps  you out.
  13. Hi,   For an Indie developer the best way to get onto a major console is to first and most importantly MAKE THE GAME. Then what you do is release the game online on as many websites as you can. If your game catches on and people like playing it, then this will make it allot easier to get onto a major console. Another way is to just release the game as an Indie game by yourself. Xbox, PS, Android all have easy ways for Indie developers to get published with out having to do a bunch of paperwork. I mean have you seen the Indie games out there? Most of them are crap, and yet you will still find them on Xbox and PS. So don't worry too much about getting the big game companies interested in your game. Just make it, release it, and if the world loves it, the game companies will be contacting you.
  14. I've thought about doing a reverse on the zombie type game, where you play as the zombie and try to increase your brain power, as you get smarter you learn to use weapons and such. There would even be a chance to turn back into a human. Just an idea.
  15. The Indie game world is crazy right now, everyone and their dog is trying to get a game completed. You have to remember that an Indie game is what the name implies. A game made by an individual not a group or company. Today Indie stands for more then that of course, but the core of it comes from a single person who wants to make a game, not necessarily for money, but for the fun or challenge of it. If you are having trouble finding a programmer to join your team, then make the game with out the need for a programmer. There is software out there that will allow you to make a decent first version of almost any type of game. Don't set your goals too high. What I mean is don't try to make the next Call of Duty, or MineCraft. It's been done, so don't waste the energy. Keep it simple at first, then if the idea of the game takes off you will have no problem finding programmers to work with you. It is hard to get others to stick around and work on a project that they are not sure will make it, but get something out there that people are interested in and then you have a better chance of having some good quality people sign on to the project. Try putting your game on KickStarter, even just a demo of it. You can find out if your game is a good idea just from doing this. If people like your game, then you will know it by the fact that they will donate to the cause. I am a programmer, I dabble in mobile game development. I've learned that simple and easy is better then complex and never finishing. Good luck.