Wanting Free Proggraming Lessons

Anything to do with programming games...
frawsty

Post by frawsty » Sat Jun 04, 2005 3:35 pm

It depends on what platform you want to use. If you are thinking of prograaming 3D games and don't even know what language you want to use, then don't plan on a 3D game for a few years atleast. That is very advanced programming. Here are a few suggestions:

Learn C then C++, now you can move on to making video games (C/C++ aren't great for making anything other than text and ascii block type games)

Next step can be a few things, Visual C++ (code) and DirectX (graphic/sound/3d routines)

or

Flash Actionscript (Flash for graphic routines, Actioscript for code)

or

Java (code and graphics routines)

or Visual Basic

I recommend going the Flash route and here is why. Flash has everything you need in one package, Object Oriented for fast code (Actionscript), sound routines, keyboard and mouse controls, easy interface, and easy graphic handling (sprites etc.)

3D games are very very advanced so I'm sorry to say you wont be doing them for a long time. Get on Amazon and look up the different game creation books. Once you learn the code you will need to learn how game coding is different from normal programs.

Keep in mind that the big commercial games you see, Starcraft, Warcraft, Counterstrike etc. all took many years to write and they had financial backing so they could focus on only programming/designing all day AND they had groups of programmers, sound techs, graphics guys, project managers etc. Games like Ulitma Online, Everquest and other large online games are even bigger projects.

I bet that it took Sean years to make the games he has here. I'm guessing he used Visual Basic or Visual C++ to make them.

Your best bet is to learn C and C++ because pretty much everything is based around Object Oriented programming now. I learned them early and have learned other languages, once you learn your first language things get easier. They all pretty much work the same, you just have to learn the keywords, syntax, and the coding program you use to write and compile the games/programs you design.

Good luck!

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Post by frawsty » Sat Jun 04, 2005 3:41 pm

fyi
Feel free to ask me questions if you want. I'm usually on YIM or AIM.
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Post by qwas » Sat Jun 04, 2005 6:31 pm

Thx, you've got a load off my mind, now, any remmomandations?

Also, do you approve of my idea?: I want to create a very complex game, but I have ideas of a MUCH simpler game, should I try that out?
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Post by Legacy » Sat Jun 04, 2005 10:47 pm

I believe Sean has posted that he used C.

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Post by OrigamiGuy » Sun Jun 05, 2005 4:40 am

If you've got a simple game in mind, then start simple. Making a simple game more complex is MUCH easier than starting too big and getting burnt out.
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Post by qwas » Sun Jun 05, 2005 5:29 am

Reccomandations where I can learn and Program C?
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Post by OrigamiGuy » Sun Jun 05, 2005 6:47 am

The best way to learn any programming language is the same way you learn a foreign language like Spanish or something.

1.) It helps to have lots and lots of practice.

2.) It helps to have another person who knows the language already, to answer your questions.

The best recommendations I can make are to buy a good book from an actual bookstore (because online tutorials can be clumsy) or find an online forum geared specifically toward programming games.

If you're REALLY serious about learning to program, then you might consider paying for a computer programming course at your local university or community college (I'm not sure what the equivalent is in the UK). Nothing can teach you faster than someone who's already been there, and is in person helping you through it.
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Post by Legacy » Sun Jun 05, 2005 12:34 pm

I'll vouch for that. When I was 7 or 8 I started fooling with GWBASIC on my AT&T 6300, a computer made sevral years before I was born, and it was easier to learn from my mom showing me(She's not a programmer, but she knew some from working at a library downstate and BASIC is old, so she knew some from just playing with it over the years. And then, more recently, I tried teaching myself VB, but didn't get too far until I took CP Computer Programming I and II my junior year in high school(also known as this past school year, heh). Mind you, after the first semester i started working way ahead of the class, hence landing myself in my current programming project, a game that I'm making just to see if I can, and because my friends want me to. They helped come up with the basis from it which was played on paper, but they don't seem to want to learn to program to help me, despite that I've offered to give them free lessons. Great friends, eh.

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Post by Old Man Johnson » Sun Jun 05, 2005 1:12 pm

I have to agree with that too, but I've found that if you play around with a language enough, you eventually figure out how to use it. Also, since you've used it so much, you have a deep familiarity with it. I had that happen to me with my TI-83 calculator and its programming language (rather like Basic).

However, I don't recommend this. It took me many zoned out math classes before I could fifure things out. Very time consuming.
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Post by qwas » Sun Jun 05, 2005 2:41 pm

OrigamiGuy wrote:The best way to learn any programming language is the same way you learn a foreign language like Spanish or something.

1.) It helps to have lots and lots of practice.

2.) It helps to have another person who knows the language already, to answer your questions.

The best recommendations I can make are to buy a good book from an actual bookstore (because online tutorials can be clumsy) or find an online forum geared specifically toward programming games.

If you're REALLY serious about learning to program, then you might consider paying for a computer programming course at your local university or community college (I'm not sure what the equivalent is in the UK). Nothing can teach you faster than someone who's already been there, and is in person helping you through it.
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Post by frawsty » Sun Jun 05, 2005 5:10 pm

def. go small for awhile. making small apps boots your confidence as you work through the little bugs in your code and finally complete it. now that you have better direction make sure you also learn good programming practices, this will help you become a better programmer. being lazy and not documenting your code or making sloppy code will get you into bad habits, make it tough for any programmers that work on your code after you, and making it harder on you when you go back to work on something you made weeks, months, years ago.

in my experience you are always evolving and getting better or doing things different, when you go back and look at old code you will thank yourself when you have comments in it.

your best bet is to go sign up for a beginner C Programming 101 class or something like that. their are many benefits to this, mainly you are learning from an experienced programmer. teaching yourself isnt always the best way to learn the basics. once you get a handle on the language, teaching yourself the advanced stuff from books is much easier. i do this all the time. learning from others will get you on the fast track though.

dont let anyone scam you into buying a development environment, you can find almost everything for free on the web. as you get more serious then getting the apps like Visual C++ etc will make life easier.

as you get more advanced, dont forget to learn about databases too! these take your apps to the next level and beyond. if you really want to get into game programming, you should look into getting a computer science degree or taking the classes atleast. here in the usa we have several schools that are teaching game programming and the whole science and business about it as actual degrees/certificates.

here is a link to Teach Yourself C In 24 Hours (these teach yourself books are great, i have a bunch of them)
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/ ... 70-4799309

Teach yourself C++ in 24 hours
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/de ... s&n=507846

Teach yourself game programming in 24 hours
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/de ... s&n=507846

(Advanced)
after you have learned C/C++ and Visual C++ you can jump on this bad boy, Teach yourself game programming in DirectX:
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/d ... s&n=507846

Teach yourself Flash in 24 hours:
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/de ... s&n=507846

Dont let the "24 hours" title fool you. you wont learn this in one day. This means, each lesson is broken up into 24, 1 hour lessons = 24 hours :)

If you goto Amazon.com and do a book search for "Teach yourself game programming" you will get a bunch of hits for C/C++, visual basic, java etc. you have a lot of options but C and C++ are a must before you even get started on this.

btw, i recommend using www.google.com as your search engine vs. yahoo or microsoft etc.

here is a great website to learn c/c++ without buying any books but having reference material really helps:
http://www.cprogramming.com/
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Post by qwas » Sun Jun 05, 2005 6:47 pm

thx
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Post by qwas » Sun Jun 05, 2005 6:48 pm

What is the difference between C and C++?
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Post by frawsty » Sun Jun 05, 2005 7:18 pm

C is the base level of the language...much simpler, pure "inline" coding using the language.

C++ is when you use C but taking it to the next level, Object Oriented Programming (OOP.)

In C++ you will learn how to combine variable data, custom funtions etc. into "classes" with which you make "objects." This is very powerful and can make your code much quicker. OOP is understood as the "professional" way to develop. This is pretty advanced and takes a little but of "out of the box" thinking to grasp the concept. Once you do, you can kick things into high gear :)

Just get started with C. Make little programs that do one thing, then move up to more complex things. My advice is to wait on trying to learn graphics, sound, keyboard/mouse handling and just learn how to create, manipulate and display data.

Are you familiar with Linux or any flavor or Unix?
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Post by qwas » Mon Jun 06, 2005 4:03 am

No, Used Microsoft since I started on computers
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