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1025548 Posts in 41094 Topics- by 32701 Members - Latest Member: eugenelab

July 22, 2014, 11:29:58 AM
TIGSource ForumsPlayerGeneralWhen to stop programming and begin game development.
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Author Topic: When to stop programming and begin game development.  (Read 2989 times)
ஒழுக்கின்மை
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« Reply #30 on: November 11, 2012, 08:03:54 PM »

i what you listed are necessary, but those are sort of abstract and not actually a part of a programming language so much as experience and knowledge about how to use it

and most of that knowledge has to be learned through experience. i mean, sure, you can study "design" in a classroom, but i think the fastest way to learn how to design a game is to actually make one; you don't need to have studied programming design to design a program. likewise you don't need to have taken a class in debugging or read a book about it in order to be able to debug
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« Reply #31 on: November 11, 2012, 09:42:07 PM »

reading up on theoretical stuff

Do you have any recommendations for good reading material here? My extracurricular reading list already includes Design Patterns and a CS book whose title escapes me at the moment but I'm open to other suggestions. I have no aspirations to, for example, write all my own engine code or be any sort of super coder, but I want to better understand how to think like a programer, if that makes sense. (I've also got an assignment for work that will require me to get into very nitty gritty Python stuff; the problem with such assignments is that I have to deal with admin stuff first, and admin stuff keeps coming up, so its been neglected for a while. ;P)

One interesting thing I went through regarding design was this from this http://www.lynda.com/Programming-tutorials/Foundations-of-Programming-Object-Oriented-Design/96949-2.html

There are some recommended reading and referenced books at the end. I haven't read the books myself, but they may be a good place to start. I have always found lynda to be a great resource, even if they lack exercises or challenges to test yourself. Also for python. If you google "python how to think like a computer scientist", you will get some great interactive learning.


- variable types, assigning values to variables, and arrays, and global vs local variables. data structures are useful but not essential at the beginning.
- the basic operations on those variables like + and - and * and / and mod (you don't need to learn bitwise operators, although they're useful occasionally). "mod" is actually very important, make sure you really understand it, i use mod almost as much as addition or division
- flow control stuff (if/then/else, for loops, while loops, select/case)
- how to use "and" and "or" -- xor is optional and only rarely needed
- how to use brackets to create blocks of code -- e.g. if (x==1) {code}
- how to use parenthesis to control longer calculations -- e.g. (5-3)*3 vs 5-3*3, know that the deepest level of parenthesis is calculated before the outer levels
- how to code functions, including function arguments and function return values

I feel like I have a good grasp of these principles, as well as those presented by impulse9. Like I've mentioned my design side of programming is lacking, and I do think I need to just start making stuff to nail that down well.
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« Reply #32 on: November 12, 2012, 04:34:39 AM »

By the way, have you heard of Cactus? He builds games incredibly fast, and his first commercial game, Hotline Miami, has come out moderately recently. Try searching him up. Hotline Miami was all made in Game Maker.
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« Reply #33 on: November 12, 2012, 05:03:36 AM »

I wonder what that 1% is you cannot code with this.
there are a small percent of games (probably less than 1%, but around that) which could *not* be coded without recursion
Every recursion can be replaced by those basic fundamentals you mentioned.

However the realization of complex stuff is about software-engineering, not about what can be potentially expressed by atomic operations.
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« Reply #34 on: November 12, 2012, 06:40:17 AM »

the answer to the op question is "right now"

do it RIGHT NOW
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« Reply #35 on: November 12, 2012, 07:40:10 AM »

maybe this post needs to be locked, so OP can start gamedevving without people theorizing even further.
 Well, hello there!
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« Reply #36 on: November 12, 2012, 07:52:54 AM »

maybe this post needs to be locked, so OP can start gamedevving without people theorizing even further.
 Well, hello there!

Haha, it keeps my mind on my project while at my 40hr/week gig. I like it!

By the way, have you heard of Cactus? He builds games incredibly fast, and his first commercial game, Hotline Miami, has come out moderately recently. Try searching him up. Hotline Miami was all made in Game Maker.

Yeah, the Swedish developer. I've looked at some of his stuff, and I've heard a lot about how fast he iterates through game ideas. I have't combed through his entire library, but I'm sure there is a lot of "trash" from the learning process.

Flash seems like a very popular platform for this quick iterative learning process phase of game development.
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« Reply #37 on: November 12, 2012, 08:00:39 AM »

Quote
while at my 40hr/week gig.
fair enough  Grin
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« Reply #38 on: November 12, 2012, 08:34:05 AM »

Learning programming is something like from when you draw your first stick figure into drawing an anatomically correct figure.

Most of it you'll learn with practice. Most of the techniques you can pass between other mediums… switching from watercolour to pencil reapplies 80% of the same principles. Switching from C++ to Objective-C is also similar. Even if you have complete mastery of one, and have never seen the other, you shouldn't have too much trouble.

There are of course, plenty of tomes and lots of classes. And they will definitely help you - you'll save years from good techniques. My advice is pick up those books when you're already literate with the programming jargon. If you don't know what a variable is, all the variables nomenclature discussion will just confuse you.


Personally, I've never used Java in my degree. Don't know the syntax. I tried to pick up a book, spent a lot of money on them, but nothing clicked. So I did it the hard way - I just rewrote everything in tutorials. I made stuff. That stuff crashed. I kept looking for proper syntax on how to make that stuff. I made cheat sheets so I wouldn't have to dig it up again.

After a few days, the syntax just clicks. I could actually start reading the 20 line error logs that pop up on every minor bug. I learned to catch bugs. A lot of the tutorials started to click at that point, because I knew what the hell they're talking about.


Two things you should look at when programming: Functions and shortcuts. Everything else will come naturally, but actually looking at those two will save a lot of time.

Functions abstract out your code. While they make code more readable, the real value is that they allow you to repeat actions. If you're ever copying and pasting things, seriously consider a function. Then you only need to change it in one place if you make an error.

Shortcuts are a little unintuitive because most people can code their entire lives without ever using one. But programming tools are made by programmers, and most of it is designed to be really quick. If you're coding websites, you'll appreciate the beauty of (windows key+arrow keys) and ctrl-tab. With some code, there are cool things, like pressing f3 to jump to a function or ctrl-K to delete a line. Many editors use different shortcuts, so figure out yours.
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« Reply #39 on: November 12, 2012, 04:09:36 PM »

@ op

I love theory but it's going to be difficult to apply outside an academic setting, in which you have guidance by professionals.

You want to be building stuff as quickly as possible, and you want to go back to your theory in loops. You'll develop an intuition that way for determining which theory is most applicable, and how best to study it.
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« Reply #40 on: November 12, 2012, 08:36:34 PM »

I just had an interesting theory while learning about constants. (though it doesn't pertain directly to them)

As children grow and mature, their imagination and wonderment is filled with reason and rational thought. I imagine this is similar in the world of programming and game design in general. Preconceived solutions during problem solving will to a degree hamper imagination, innovation, and block you from that "Ahh ha!" moment. Interesting video on evoking the "Aha" moment.

Just a thought I felt like sharing with the community.  Grin
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« Reply #41 on: November 13, 2012, 04:04:47 AM »

Yeah, theory can make you afraid of doing it wrong, shutting down your instincts, which are important.
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« Reply #42 on: November 13, 2012, 09:26:28 AM »

Quote
When to stop programming and begin game development.
You are already late.

Is this an attempt to be witty, simply rhetorical, or do you have a point?
I ain't no goddamn witty nor simply rhetorical.

*Cracks the whip*
Open up your editor of choice. Make Pong. You started game development.
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« Reply #43 on: November 13, 2012, 09:48:15 AM »

*Cracks the whip*
Open up your editor of choice. Make Pong. You started game development.

I was able to get my Objective-C program to read and write a Diablo 3 profile to a .txt file last night. Now whether or not I want to do anything with that information is another question. Right now I'm taking some of that knowledge and using it to save out some data inputted by the user, and display it on a table with some calculation involved. Not quite game development yet, but software development is a start. Smiley
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« Reply #44 on: November 13, 2012, 10:27:14 AM »

I was able to get my Objective-C program to read and write a Diablo 3 profile to a .txt file last night. Now whether or not I want to do anything with that information is another question. Right now I'm taking some of that knowledge and using it to save out some data inputted by the user, and display it on a table with some calculation involved. Not quite game development yet, but software development is a start. Smiley
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