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 Post subject: Videogames...
PostPosted: Sun Mar 13, 2005 1:43 am 
Little Foot
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Not sure if this is right for posting, but what the hey: suck it up princess, videogames are multimedia too...

I need advice on how to develop videogames... what total amount of software do I need (for Windows or Linux). (I already have a huge server on the way with a nice high powered Nvidia card on the way) I want the professional business type programs (you can eliminate 3D studio max - knew about that one a while ago)... what else do I need? (can't provide facts without websites)

Also I was wondering how on earth developers are able to get the games to multiple platforms (PC, MAC, xbox, Ps2, GC etc.) all in one shot (then again there is a reason why they take 3-5 years to make a game, isn't there)


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 Post subject: Multiple Platforms
PostPosted: Sun Mar 13, 2005 3:14 am 
8086
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Joined: Fri Mar 11, 2005 2:52 am
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How? I'm not a programmer, I don't know. But if you notice, games are primarily programmed for one platform in the cases of multiple developments--so one version will have little things that look strange. For example, Deus Ex 2 went from being a depthy RPG to...universal ammo and a look thats alot more console-ly than PC.

Nowadays there are alot of companies whose job is emulation software--their primary goal is to emulate code from one platform with as little performance loss as possible.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Mar 13, 2005 5:33 am 
Smithfield*
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ok bro you lose on two accounts. theres two folders this should go to. theres a folder just for games and theres a folder just for programming, this would def. not be the right place to post.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2005 4:34 am 
Little Foot
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gramaton cleric wrote:
ok bro you lose on two accounts. theres two folders this should go to. theres a folder just for games and theres a folder just for programming, this would def. not be the right place to post.


technically, it does count if I am making graphics for it... on the other hand, since I am inquiring about making videogames, this seems good enough.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2005 7:22 am 
Smithfield
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Gramaton is right. Check out the programming forum. Multi-media may include graphics, but in the sense of this forum, it is about music, movies, television, radio.

Technically speaking, you might include video cards in multimedia as well, but notice that the opowers that be have split off a forum aimed directly at videocard questions.

You MIGHT get some technical help here with your graphics questions, but you'll get more and better answers from a programmer.


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 Post subject: Re: Videogames...
PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2005 7:55 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Fri Mar 11, 2005 12:44 am
Posts: 58
techdude wrote:
Not sure if this is right for posting, but what the hey: suck it up princess, videogames are multimedia too...

I need advice on how to develop videogames... what total amount of software do I need (for Windows or Linux). (I already have a huge server on the way with a nice high powered Nvidia card on the way) I want the professional business type programs (you can eliminate 3D studio max - knew about that one a while ago)... what else do I need? (can't provide facts without websites)

Also I was wondering how on earth developers are able to get the games to multiple platforms (PC, MAC, xbox, Ps2, GC etc.) all in one shot (then again there is a reason why they take 3-5 years to make a game, isn't there)


As a game programmer, i can tell you that you will need VS .net for windows (linux is another story). You can make any game for almost any platform with VS. Console games have emulators which is just software (sometimes even hardware) provided by the console manufacture (sony, nintendo...)

Games take a long time to program. For example, half-life2 has over a 1000 code files each ranging from a few hundred to a few thousand lines of code in each file. It would take 1 programming several decades to complete that. When you have more than 1 coder you have to be careful how you mange your project. Programmers will sometimes be working on the same files and to manage the codes is a huge task itself.

Most games dont ever get finished. The games you can buy are the lucky ones that made it to the finished stage. I would say 1 in 10 gets finished. I also takes a very long time to learn how to develop good products. Don't expect to make anything significant for at least 3 to 4 years from when you started learning.

Programming for multiple platforms is not as hard as you think, its not easy, but because C++(which you will use) is a universal language you only have to change the minor OS specific code which if its a game, wont be much because games do all their own graphics using more universal languages like OpenGL


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2005 1:11 am 
Boy in Black
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How would you use VS.net and C++ in game programming? Minesweeper type game? As a game programmer, I thought you'd have more insight than "they take a while". If it's just a few tweaks, how come there's more Linux ports than there are for Mac's OS X? There's more Mac rigs than gamming Linux rigs, and it's both Open Source (unix) based. How should you go about getting VS.net based work to execute on PS2 or GameCube? There's limits with C++, and you won't get much further than tetris type yawners.

No one person could tackle something as huge as HL2 by themselves. It's beyond even comprehension, and no one is expecting to be a Carmichal overnight. But what was CounterStrike? A couple buddies made the best multiplayer game in history (even though Goose gets soul credit). No, it wasn't quite that fun prior to being purchased and "fixed", but it was a game and that's the idea here. To have a game purchased by Valve and ran through the corporation for tweaking would be an honor IMO. Games like Postal2 are well within the limits in what a single person can build.

I'd simply suggest fiddling with mapping and modeling first, then get deeper. If you can't make a simple playable map or mod, then forget even trying to tackle a full game. If people won't play your free TFC/HL/COD/Doom/etc, then they won't pay for it. I always suggest the old worldcraft(hammer) for fiddling as the support is out there pretty heavily for any help you may need. Milkshape, Photoshop, Bryce, Poser, whatever is recommended for that game or engine you're playing with.

Oh ya, go to the bookstore and look up the game programming books. Read it if you can, and see if it's something you really want to do. Gaming is a growing market that won't shrink any time soon. It wasn't until this year that I started to see "Career Links" on vendors sites. But you need to build a resume, and fiddling is a start.

And some games are on multiple platforms because they aren't the same game. They're mostly written for x86 PC platforms. If you want that game on the PS2, then you have to re-write the game for that platform to resemble the other as close as possible or make it a complete spin-off. Same for Macs and such. You hit it pretty close on why it takes so long for the Platform change. What was it...two years for COD to hit the consoles? What boy wonder forgot was that games for PC's run through an interfacing program called DirectX, have drivers to deal with, hardware support...the whole gauntlet. If you want that game on the PS2, then you're going to have to re-write it for a different enviroment where none of those variants exsist. What may have worked for an nVidia/ATI driver won't work at all with whatever Sony uses and you'll have to find another way to make that deathray glow and reflect off the mirror when you shoot it. Minor OS tweaks? The thing won't even execute with minor changes when you try and use a totally different type of processor, let alone a different interface.


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 Post subject: Re: Videogames...
PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2005 11:23 am 
Coppermine
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Joined: Wed Jul 07, 2004 11:07 am
Posts: 666
Location: Woodland Hills, CA
MaximumBS wrote:
Games take a long time to program.

I'd like to point out not _ALL_ games take a long time to _program_ . A first person shooter game engine can easily be written in less than 6 months. In fact, I wrote one in less than 3 months.

The _content_ however (textures, models, maps, sound, etc.) takes more time than coding the engine itself.

MaximumBS wrote:
Programming for multiple platforms is not as hard as you think, its not easy, but because C++(which you will use) is a universal language you only have to change the minor OS specific code which if its a game, wont be much

Umm, I'm not an expert about cross platform stuff but...
I agree with C++ being mostly portable. DirectX and Direct3D however are not portable. I don't think switching from DirectX/D3D to openGL is trivial. Please correct me if I am wrong.

MaximumBS wrote:
because games do all their own graphics using more universal languages like OpenGL

Technically openGL is not a "language", but a library.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2005 11:35 am 
Coppermine
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Location: Woodland Hills, CA
Chumly wrote:
How would you use VS.net and C++ in game programming?

I don't understand what you mean here. VS.net is an IDE and C++ is a language. WIth these two things together, you can write code to access libraries like DirectX and D3D to generate graphics.

Chumly wrote:
Minesweeper type game? As a game programmer, I thought you'd have more insight than "they take a while". If it's just a few tweaks, how come there's more Linux ports than there are for Mac's OS X? There's more Mac rigs than gamming Linux rigs, and it's both Open Source (unix) based. How should you go about getting VS.net based work to execute on PS2 or GameCube? There's limits with C++, and you won't get much further than tetris type yawners.

What is your point here? If you write code with portabilibility in mind then yes it would easiER to port code into other SDK's. Keep in mind Consoles have prewritten SDKs. If I were a game developer and told to target multi platforms, I would code in a canonical fashion, separating out platform specific code into other source files.

Chumly wrote:
and no one is expecting to be a Carmichal overnight.

Who? Do you mean John Carmack?

Chumly wrote:
But what was CounterStrike?

Counter Strike used the Half Life SDK, they did NOT have to program and debug the engine. All they had to do was program in tweaks and add content.

Chumly wrote:
I'd simply suggest fiddling with mapping and modeling first, then get deeper.

I agree with you here. But is this person asking about only developing 3D FPS? Don't need to map or model to write Tetris.

Chumly wrote:
Oh ya, go to the bookstore and look up the game programming books.

I agree here, but would also like to add that it would be helpful if you learned how to program first. Most of these game programming books assume you know c or c++.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2005 2:33 pm 
Team Member Top 100
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Quote:
As a game programmer, i can tell you that you will need VS .net for windows


Ever heard of Dev-C++, dude? It's a free IDE. It uses MingW, the Windows port of GCC.
Both compilers are free (yes, MS's is free, too), but Dev-C++ is free, whereas MS's IDE is not.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 30, 2005 12:59 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2005 12:36 pm
Posts: 5
1. You need a editor of some kind and a compiler. Doesn't matter too much which ones. An IDE has its own learning curve but can make managing projects easier. As for the compiler, any is fine starting out, but you would eventually want a faster one then the free compilers, although they can be tweaked, but they can't compare with MS or Intels, but those are pricey beasts. Better to start with a free one, like mentioned above.

2. Learn how to program, this seems obvious, but can not be overstated. Learn C and/or C++, probably both and it won't hurt to learn some assembler. Learning how computers actually work, it goes way beyond Maximum PC's often extremely simplistic explainations about how hardware works. Learing a programming language is a small part in learning how to be a good programmer.

3. Learning the mathematics of 3D and physics should be next, that means linear algebra and perhaps some calculus for physics.

4. Now you are ready to learn directX or openGL. Either is fine, but DX will lock you into windows.

5. You are ready to create any type of game you want, and have a solid foundation for moving elsewhere if you want. Of course if you are just looking to create simple games like minesweeper or card games you can skip the above and just learn a pretend programming language like VB. :wink:


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