A good beginning point.

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onyxthedog 101 Feb 20, 2008 at 22:08

I have recently noticed alot of threads talking about something of this nature: “I have no programming knowledge, but want to learn how to create games. Do you know about any engines that I could use?”

Well, this is not really a thread about ranting on them, more of some helpful advice for them to get started. But I think I might want to show them the error of their ways. First, it is against the rules:
@Forum Rules

Questions that can be answered by a 10-min search on any search engine. Our forums are not a search-engine-proxy to do the researching on your behalf.

Questions that have been asked countless of times, such as: how to make a MMORPG, what language to use, etc. Search the forums and the web for answers to such questions.

Questions that seek help in making a game, learning a language, learning how to program, etc. Research yourself and you’ll find plenty of resources online and books that will help.

Questions that ask specific questions about an engine; such questions should be directed to the engine’s website/forums.

Questions that are vague, have too many spelling mistakes, or incoherent sentences.

This is straight out of the rules! Many of these questions are at the very least breaking one of these rules. So just don’t do it please, the reason being it makes it hard to find good information.

Here are some ideas for what might be of some help: If you know someone who programs, then ask them for some resources!
Here is a resource that will help you learn C/C++ (caution pop-ups) Without knowing a programming language it is going to be nearly pointless having an engine. Most engines are just a couple of header files (if you use C++).

You also won’t catch a word of any pre-written games without extensive knowledge of a programming language. I know C++ and I can’t understand most other peoples code, especially if it is not well commented.

SDL if you already know C++ is very helpful. Lazy Foo has some great tutorials and articles for SDL.

If you have no intention in learning programming then Game Maker and similiar is just about your only option. But it is very capable, but as you will soon find it does have its limits.

Another option is learn how to create graphics, music, sound fx, or create “pen and paper games”. With one or more of these skills you can join a team of game developers and boom, your in game development.

This is a very good resource for non-programmers to learn some very important concepts.

Well, this concludes this little thread. I hope it stops the asking of some of these types of questions, because there is some nice information all in one place that is very good.

17 Replies

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vdf22 101 Feb 20, 2008 at 22:23
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onyxthedog 101 Feb 23, 2008 at 05:09

Should I post a link in the sticky of yours, incase they do program or want some more links or possibley just copy and paste it on a post to provide more info/links?

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Reedbeta 167 Feb 23, 2008 at 08:28

Sure onyx, go ahead and repost some of those links in the other thread (I didn’t want to sticky them both).

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mmakrzem 101 Feb 24, 2008 at 14:13

I suspect that if people don’t read the FAQ’s they are not going to read this thread either. I don’t know if there is anything that can be done to minimize these kinds of posts…. Maybe if you force the people to search for their question before posting it, …. don’t know.

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Ksottam 101 Feb 26, 2008 at 00:19

Ah, looks like I was one of the guilty ones in asking advice on game engines. For that, I apologize and also thank you for not ranting.

I have come to the conclusion that I need to get at least a rudimentary understanding of programming under my belt. Being very new to it I have to wonder, however, is there a point when it suddenly just ‘clicks’? I mean, is there a point when you realize that to get to point ‘B’ from ‘A’ a light turns on and you say “Of course! I just need to follow steps 1, 2 and 3!” I’ve done a couple of basic tutorials and still find myself scratching my head asking “why is it that I type this line here?”

I’m basically just looking for confirmation that yes, this does get easier the more I do it.

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vdf22 101 Feb 26, 2008 at 01:56

@Ksottam

Ah, looks like I was one of the guilty ones in asking advice on game engines. For that, I apologize and also thank you for not ranting.

I have come to the conclusion that I need to get at least a rudimentary understanding of programming under my belt. Being very new to it I have to wonder, however, is there a point when it suddenly just ‘clicks’? I mean, is there a point when you realize that to get to point ‘B’ from ‘A’ a light turns on and you say “Of course! I just need to follow steps 1, 2 and 3!” I’ve done a couple of basic tutorials and still find myself scratching my head asking “why is it that I type this line here?”

I’m basically just looking for confirmation that yes, this does get easier the more I do it.

Yes, it will get easier as you go along. Some things (for me anyway) seemed really hard and then all of a sudden it was like “duh, that was easy!” It does take a while to get started though. If you go through some tutorials you should get the hang of it fairly easy.

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onyxthedog 101 Feb 26, 2008 at 02:47

@Ksottam

Ah, looks like I was one of the guilty ones in asking advice on game engines. For that, I apologize and also thank you for not ranting.

I have come to the conclusion that I need to get at least a rudimentary understanding of programming under my belt. Being very new to it I have to wonder, however, is there a point when it suddenly just ‘clicks’? I mean, is there a point when you realize that to get to point ‘B’ from ‘A’ a light turns on and you say “Of course! I just need to follow steps 1, 2 and 3!” I’ve done a couple of basic tutorials and still find myself scratching my head asking “why is it that I type this line here?”

I’m basically just looking for confirmation that yes, this does get easier the more I do it.

Yes, it does get way easier! Ummm….How well versed are you in math? I quite frankly struggle with getting the advance concepts because I completely skipped 7th grade math and am doing Pre-algebra in 7th grade, which really isn’t that uncommon. I do fine with that, but when I start needing to know about, say, trig or Greek notation I am normally lost, but luckily my dad loves math and can help.

Back to your programming question, I am lucky and my dad has a B.S. in Computer Science. I just use his old text-books. I have books on C, C++, Python, and Assembly, plus tons and tons of math. These are just the books that we found in the shed! Umm… If you are on a budget then I would recommend C++ How to Program by Deitel/Deitel, some the most respected names in C++ programming. The first edition has several advantages, namely, that it is only about $0.17 with out shipping, its decendences have no major improvements other than like 2 or 3 appendixes (one being on game design), it will teach what you need to know in order to succeed, it teaches everything in a very clear way, and you almost need no lecturer to understand things. One thing that I want to make very clear is that you have to, have to learn your compiler! The book represents a hello world program like this:

//Hello World program
#include <iostream.h>

main (){
    
      cout << "Hello World!\n"; //It just prints "Hello World" to the CRT screen
      return 0;
}

When in actuallity, because my compiler is Visual C++ ( I think they used an older version of Turbo C++ on a Unix system) I have to write this

//Hello World program
#include <iostream>
using namespace std;

int main () {
    cout << "Hello World!\n"; //It just prints "Hello World!" on the CRT screen
    
    return 0;
}

See the differences! It is kind of like I speak in English in the USA in a certain way, and they speak English in Britian in a certain way. Neither is wrong nor right, just different ways to speak the language.

I hope that this helps and saves you some head aches!

P.S. While it is okay to buy a programming book that is made in the ‘90’s, it is not okay to buy a game/graphics/audio programming book from the ‘90’s. Languages don’t change much over time, the others do. One major example is that we no longer program games in DOS nor use sound blasters. Also, I am not sure but I think that this might help you when learning a language:
“If you haven’t tested it, it doesn’t work!” I am not sure who origanally said it.

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Ksottam 101 Feb 26, 2008 at 04:06

Thanks guys! Onyx, thank you for the advice. It was very helpful and I’ll definitely take a look at the recommended book. I feel I’m slowly starting to get a feel of the direction I’m trying to head. Baby steps, but steps nonetheless. Nice to know now that this road gets easier!

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Reedbeta 167 Feb 26, 2008 at 09:46

Btw, onyx, regarding your two code samples, the first one should still compile in Visual Studio, since AFAIK it still includes the old iostream.h header which has everything in the global namespace instead of std. (Although the second one is considered more “correct” these days.)

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boberic 101 Feb 26, 2008 at 12:55

for me i started with 3d game studio a few years back and im still using it because it was that good. now. its not cryengine2 but its a good engine. i got some c-script and lite-c and a bit of c++ and HLSL under my feet(not to mention the all-too common HTML lol!) 3d game studio is a great place to start. it really requires you to know very little about programming(right off-hand) but later when you want to do more advanced, and complex things. HLSL shader programming and implementation of Delphi and C++ into your game would be a good idea. and the engine is simple to use. 3 basic editors world editor , script editor, and model editor. lots of plugins shaders etc already available via the forum. lots of other projects already been produced to look at. always good to look at others work for inspiration :).

hope this helps

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onyxthedog 101 Feb 26, 2008 at 14:16

@Reedbeta

Btw, onyx, regarding your two code samples, the first one should still compile in Visual Studio, since AFAIK it still includes the old iostream.h header which has everything in the global namespace instead of std. (Although the second one is considered more “correct” these days.)

It doesn’t like it if I don’t put namespace and I don’t include int infront of the main function if I return 0. It gives me an error saying that VC++ ‘08 doesn’t assume int.

BTW, kind of offtopic, I don’t understand namespaces I just learned that I had to put them could someone explain?

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SamuraiCrow 101 Feb 26, 2008 at 16:47

Namespaces are designed to prevent two variables or functions with the same name from colliding with unpredictable results.

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onyxthedog 101 Feb 27, 2008 at 01:16

So basically if I put std, then it assumes that the standard functions take predences over an unstandard?

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Reedbeta 167 Feb 27, 2008 at 05:40

Well, suppose that Vendor A produces a library with a function named ‘foo’, and Vendor B produces a totally different library that also happens to have a function named ‘foo’. Now you come along and want to use both libraries at once…but oops! You can’t because you get duplicate definition errors on ‘foo’.

But if each vendor puts their functions in a namespace, the conflict can be avoided; you can write VendorA::foo and VendorB::foo to distinguish the two foos.

The C++ standard template library defines everything to be in the ‘std’ namespace. So you would have to write std::cout and std::string and so forth. However, it’s inconvenient to have to write ‘std::’ everyplace when you don’t actually need it to avoid name conflicts. So the ‘using’ declaration lets you bring symbols from another namespace into the current namespace. In the case above that brings everything from ‘std’ into the global namespace (the global namespace is the “default” one that’s used if you do not write a namespace name). You can also use ‘using’ to bring in only specific symbols, by writing ‘using std::cout’ or something like that. Then you could use ‘cout’ instead of ‘std::cout’, but you would still need the ‘std::’ for anything else in std.

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onyxthedog 101 Feb 27, 2008 at 16:39

Okay that clears it up. When my father was going to school I beleive he said that they didn’t have to use namespaces, but that was in the mid to late ‘80’s. I think I understand!

****UPDATE***************************************************************
This is also a very helpful site!

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Reedbeta 167 Feb 27, 2008 at 16:47

Yes, namespaces were a later addition to C++.

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gillvane 101 Jul 02, 2008 at 16:41

@onyxthedog

I have recently noticed alot of threads talking about something of this nature: “I have no programming knowledge, but want to learn how to create games. Do you know about any engines that I could use?”

Well, this is not really a thread about ranting on them, more of some helpful advice for them to get started. But I think I might want to show them the error of their ways. First, it is against the rules:

This is straight out of the rules! Many of these questions are at the very least breaking one of these rules. So just don’t do it please, the reason being it makes it hard to find good information.

Here are some ideas for what might be of some help: If you know someone who programs, then ask them for some resources!
Here is a resource that will help you learn C/C++ (caution pop-ups) Without knowing a programming language it is going to be nearly pointless having an engine. Most engines are just a couple of header files (if you use C++).

You also won’t catch a word of any pre-written games without extensive knowledge of a programming language. I know C++ and I can’t understand most other peoples code, especially if it is not well commented.

SDL if you already know C++ is very helpful. Lazy Foo has some great tutorials and articles for SDL.

If you have no intention in learning programming then Game Maker and similiar is just about your only option. But it is very capable, but as you will soon find it does have its limits.

Another option is learn how to create graphics, music, sound fx, or create “pen and paper games”. With one or more of these skills you can join a team of game developers and boom, your in game development.

This is a very good resource for non-programmers to learn some very important concepts.

Well, this concludes this little thread. I hope it stops the asking of some of these types of questions, because there is some nice information all in one place that is very good.

Realm Crafter and the Torque MMO kit are good starting places if you’re interested in making MMORPGs, but not learning C++.

You can stop by MMORPG Maker for info and reviews of those engines.

Everybody is welcome, even noobs that don’t know how to code or script.