Need help getting started with games...

This is a discussion on Need help getting started with games... within the Game Programming forums, part of the General Programming Boards category; Ok guys, I'm having serious trouble trying to wrap my head around things like DirectX and OpenGL. Like i can ...

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    Need help getting started with games...

    Ok guys, I'm having serious trouble trying to wrap my head around things like DirectX and OpenGL. Like i can do simple iostream programs, and I'm confident in saying that I understand how all the code works, but... as soon as i look for tutorials on graphics programing the first page of anything i find throws all this random code and i don't have the slightest idea what it all reeeally means. Does anybody know any tutorials on directX or OpenGL, or any good places to start with this stuff so i can just understand whats going on?

  2. #2
    Super Moderator VirtualAce's Avatar
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    The best way to learn is:

    1. Go to www.gamedev.net and click on their books section. Find out which ones others like and which ones you like.
    2. Go to www.amazon.com and buy the book.

    Tutorials are notorious for focusing so intently on one idea that they can rarely be implemented in any real game engine without some bit of effort. They are also known for being dead wrong, misleading, and/or outdated.

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    l'Anziano DavidP's Avatar
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    How long have you been programming? Do you have a solid understanding of arrays and pointers, and just memory manipulation in general? Throwing memory around all over the place happens a lot in graphics...so it's important to know. It's also important to know your bitwise operations (AND, OR, XOR, NOT, etc.)

    Anyways...enough of that....

    I might get stoned for saying what I am about to say....

    <braces for stones>

    Go to this site:

    http://www.brackeen.com/vga/

    Now...this site will teach you about old VGA style graphics. So why do I point you there? It's not DirectX or OpenGL, which means it's not any of the latest and greatest stuff. It will, however, give you a very solid understanding about what is happening underneath those high-level DirectX and OpenGL interfaces. That way you will be able to understand what DirectX and OpenGL are doing a bit better.

    <braces for more stones>

    Many people advise skipping this step, but it is my personal opinion that learning such a style of graphics is very important for your overall knowledge and it is very good groundwork.

    Moving on to DirectX and OpenGL...

    </stops bracing for stones>

    I haven't used DirectX very much to be quite honest, although I need to get into a bit more. I have experience mostly with OpenGL and also SDL. All of them, however, are good APIs. Like Bubba said, go find a good book, sit down and read it, and do all the programming practices that you can find in that book. It will help you really learn those APIs.
    My Website

    "Circular logic is good because it is."

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    Super Moderator VirtualAce's Avatar
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    I might get stoned for saying what I am about to say....

    http://www.brackeen.com/vga/
    Hehe. No stones here. Learning VGA programming will teach you a lot about video memory, surfaces, and how to use them. I think learning the fundamentals is key. Now I wouldn't waste time writing an engine or a software rasterizer for DOS but knowing how it works will give you a clearer understanding of how Direct3D and OGL work their magic.

    Video cards today are essentially hardware-based libraries of what was learned in the old DOS days concerning games, 3D graphics, and so forth. Now that they are in hardware they are blazing fast. Something we used to spend months trying to accomplish before.

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    if you want to start game programming I recommend windows and DirectX. Windows is the most popular operating system for games so if you want more people to play it then windos is good for you. Another good reason to use windows is directx it is an easy tool you can use to make games for windows there are many free websites also that have tutorials on directx
    Hope this helps.

  6. #6
    The Right Honourable psychopath's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tbca
    directx it is an easy tool you can use to make games for windows
    Well, you're not going to make a whole game just with Direct X. As for easy....opinions vary ;p.

    Quote Originally Posted by tbca
    if you want more people to play it then windos is good for you
    If you want more people to play it, develop for every platform. There are plenty of people playing games on the Mac (or plenty of people who would like to).

    Quote Originally Posted by tbca
    there are many free websites also that have tutorials on directx
    There are plenty of websites with tutorials for OpenGL as well. But as stated above, a good book will do you far more good than some free tutorials will.

    </OpenGL Evangelism>
    Memorial University of Newfoundland
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    Mac and OpenGL evangelist.

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    Thanks for the help guys... that VGA stuff looks like the kinda thing i was looking for.

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