I am trying to break into the world of game development and I figured I'd go ahead and join this community in the hopes of furthering my knowledge.
Now I hope everyone will take me seriously and not think I am one of the thousands of kids that is trying to make a game and does not understand the challenge that it poses. (Actually that is why I am here, I am in constant need of information and I figured it'd be nice to actually be able to ask questions.)
I have several years of your basic IT experience, you know, fixing printers, imaging machines, fixing minor registry problems and so on. Doing this I picked up writing basic scripts in Batch and later decided to learn how to code in Hypertext, do style sheets and some basic PHP. I also dabbled in C++ as a hobby. I have a basic understanding of programming so I'll just list concepts I am familiar with so that others may better be able to help me.
- Difference between scripting and programming.
- The understanding of in basic terms what compiling and interpreting does.
- I/O and file I/O.
- Variables, constants etc.
- Preprocessor directives and header files.
- What the hell is a pointer?
- Classes differ from functions.
- How to load the contents of one .cpp file into the code of another and call functions from it.
So I can do basics in C++. Am I ready to jump into actually making a "real" game, rather than spending boring hours making exercise programs in C++?
Long term, I and a group of friends would like to get into making Indie Games, we have several RPG ideas. I would suspect I should not start out trying to make our RPGs as it seems like that genre is really hard to do in the beginning,
If we are interested in doing more 3D games, should we still start with 2D engines?
What other things will we need to learn?
I am in the process of learning Blender, a mapping program, The Gimp (Too poor for Photoshop or Fireworks.). Long term is it ideal to do sound in or out of house?
What Engine do you guys recommend picking up? I am sure this is one of the most common questions, so I'll elaborate below.
We are looking for something cross-platform that will work long term, something that it is only necessary to learn once, something that is versatile. I wouldn't mind learning multiple engines for different applications if the extra learning is warranted by a better or more complete game. EG) A different engine for 3D and 2D projects. So far we like Unity3D and UDK for 3D games, but favor Unity3D because there is a free version and the lack of royalties.
My problem so far is that Unity tutorials tend to either be more advanced or very basic and I am having a hard time jumping that gap. I understand the basics of scripting and have a great understanding of the interface and hierarchy. But I need something that is either Novice to Pro, or something that can bridge the gap. A lot of the scripting tutorials give a lot more hows that whys. By that I mean, they tell you to do something (EG: Call a premade function without telling you that it is a premade function or what it does.) So either they expect that you already know this or they don't think it is prudent information. I am looking for something that explains the concepts in scripting without simply saying, "Use this now and we'll come back to it later." or :Use this, this is how you put something in the GUI.) And this causes me to keep going back to the basics and spending way more time scouring the net than actually learning.
Also when I am reading I have the tendency to get bored quickly, or get really twitchy when I am trying to comprehend a strange concept and end up wasting a lot of time pacing. Any strategies on how to say seated and reading?
So to summarize.
Where to start?
2D first then 3D, or can I just start in 3D?
Is my programming knowledge sufficient to start making games with the help of tutorials?
Tips on how to continue reading even when I get fidgety?
Complete tutorials on Unity or other program.
Thanks guys and I hope I can get into this scene and get started making games with this crowd soon.
Edit: We aren't complete newbies to the design process of games, we are set to demo, advertise and release an Pen and Paper Role Playing Game, sometime in the first quarter of next year.