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dirtyharry50: ...
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tfishell: Thanks for taking the time to write out all of this. I think I'd like to try working with some people, but I'm not sure where to find anybody who'd be interested in teaming up. I'm even interested in helping people make mods like Cry of Fear, but again, I'm not sure how to get in touch with people working on those style mods (or if I'd even have the talent they're looking for.)

I know programming won't be easy, but for now I think I should try to press forward. It may all be in futility, but this is something that interests me more than most other things. And I'd like to think most of what I will be pursuing won't be extremely complex or difficult programming - I try to know my limitations and realize I certainly won't be able to create something like the next Halo, CoD, WoW, or even many other indie games. But I'd like to think that, if I focus on the idea of simple but fun, I may be able to bring them to fruition in Unity or Game Maker.
Glad to hopefully be some help. Most of all I'll add don't ever sell yourself short. I think the high level tools might be a really great place to get your feet wet and see how it all goes from there. No matter what happens you'll have some fun doing this and also learn a lot in the process including precious intangibles like improved critical thinking and problem solving that will serve you well no matter what else you do down the road.
My best advise for learning video game programming is to start with Neverwinter Nights' toolset. It gives you very quick turnaround time in terms of assets and content to use and at the same time, you still need to learn scripting and logic. It takes a bit to master, but take your time and go through the tutorials (which are plenty). If you've gone through the tutorials and have built some modules and you still want to pursue it, I'd suggest going to http://nehe.gamedev.net and start getting your hands dirty.

Having someone experienced work with you always helps. Always. But if you cannot find someone to work with, get your hands dirty and dive in. There is no better teacher than experience.
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tfishell: (Note: this may just emulate what a lot of this generation feels, a desire to create games but no skills or patience to create them.)

I feel like I have a passion for game creation (or, maybe I should say I'm somewhat of a creative person and games happen to be the outlet for that creativity) but I have never been able to bring ideas to fruition, mainly because programming has always put me off. (I speak and think in English, not that way. :P On the other hand, I do know HTML/CSS.) Nevertheless I'd like to press forward trying to at least create a platformer eventually.

Right now I'm focused on internship work and don't really want to spend my evenings wracking my brain some more, but in a few weeks I should have a bit more free time and I'm wondering, as the title says, what you guys believe are the "best websites or books to learn game-focused programming".

I was using Codecademy to learn Javascript and progressing through that relatively well (I hoped to combine that with Unity3D), but I'm wondering if perhaps I would be better off focusing on a different language, or using different resource(s).
First Advice, Run away from Java and never turn back! The C family of programming languages are a better choice though typically harder.
If you're using languages and not an engine, work your way up the Microsoft visual ladder. Start with Basic, c# and then C++. They're designed to be used with one another, so you can import your projects from one to the other and they're more similar than most languages.

Also: Any competent programmers willing to join an indie team? We're low on supply atm and this seems like a good thread to try asking.
Post edited June 21, 2013 by McDon
I started with Flashpunk, dabbled with Game Maker and am now happily working with HaxePunk. I'd highly recommend either Flashpunk or HaxePunk. They're both relatively easy to learn and have a lot of power and flexibility behind them.
I also have aspiration of becoming a game designer. I wish I had learned about the Game Maker Contest a lot sooner, only 5-6 days left, don't think I've got enough time to get something ready for that. I not too thrilled with Unity as a game engine , but I want to focus on 2D games not 3d and the setting up the camera and that seems daunting before you even get to start programming. At the moment I'm thinking about creating the artwork for the game I would enter into the GM contest but it is slow going as well. If I get the art done, at least I should be about to use it in any game engine I finally settle on. Settling on a game engine is really hard for me. I think I have the best success when there is some contest to give me guidelines and deadlines.

I've not sure about any good books or websites, I haven't found any that worked for me. I also took courses from GameInstitute.com years ago. I had a MMOG Guild that wanted to make games, but we didn't get very far, they wanted only 3D MMORPGs and no interest in doing anything 2d or not online. Getting something on GOG would be the pinnacle of success in my eyes.

Basically for me, I've got some major block to getting deep into building a game. I may refocus on doing Mods for a little while. I just wish I could get somewhere on one of my ideas. If I got rolling I think I could really make a go of it.
(Maybe I'll start a whole new thread to document my experiences; or maybe a blog would be better, so I don't spam the forum. :P)

I went back to trying to do some Actionscript 3, even though it's been over a year since I touched it. I'm working on a platformer right now. (I didn't really want to start from scratch all over again.)

http://pastebin.com/MLBCnuSE

I can kind of understand parts of it (event listeners to listen if the keys are pressed down or not, setting variable Boolean to false so you can set it to true later/turn it on or off ), but after line 84/ function mainJump or so, I don't really know what the math means.

I'm assuming it's something like this: The function checks to see if, after the up key is pressed, the character isn't jumping and if he isn't, mainJumping is set to true so that he does jump. How fast the vertical position of the character changes initially is influenced by lines 95 and 96, I'm assuming.

I'm assuming that line 97 has to do with the arc of the jump, how fast falling is, stuff like that.

If somebody would be willing to provide a detailed explanation for lines 84 - 114 (or just 100 - 109, perhaps), I would appreciate it.
Post edited June 23, 2013 by tfishell
Please go to www.gamedev.net. While they do cater to mostly programmers, they do have many resources for art, production, sound, etc...
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tfishell: I went back to trying to do some Actionscript 3, even though it's been over a year since I touched it. I'm working on a platformer right now. (I didn't really want to start from scratch all over again.)

I can kind of understand parts of it (event listeners to listen if the keys are pressed down or not, setting variable Boolean to false so you can set it to true later/turn it on or off ), but after line 84/ function mainJump or so, I don't really know what the math means.
I really, really recommend using and [url=http://haxepunk.com/]Haxepunk or HaxeFlixel.

Haxe is almost identical to ActionScript but open source and able to compile to multiple targets, has better speed for the most part, and although it will take some understanding of the command line to get them set up, the move is worth it.

HaxePunk and HaxeFlixel are ports of two game libraries originally written in ActionScript that pretty much allow you to jump straight into programming. HaxePunk has a lot of documentation due to being almost 100% compatible with all FlashPunk tutorials/scripts (exempting the fact that you have to change imports) and HaxeFlixel also has a similar amount of documentation due to Flixel with the main difference being that it's structured differently, though different people work better with different frameworks. You'd probably have to try both.

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tfishell: If somebody would be willing to provide a detailed explanation for lines 84 - 114 (or just 100 - 109, perhaps), I would appreciate it.
http://pastebin.com/H5XtuyyV

Did my best to explain it, although when it comes to collisions with actual level objects and all, it will be exponentially easier if you use an existing framework because it's a lot of math dealing with intersections of two objects that may or may not be the same shape and all.
Post edited June 23, 2013 by johnki
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tfishell: I went back to trying to do some Actionscript 3, even though it's been over a year since I touched it. I'm working on a platformer right now. (I didn't really want to start from scratch all over again.)

I can kind of understand parts of it (event listeners to listen if the keys are pressed down or not, setting variable Boolean to false so you can set it to true later/turn it on or off ), but after line 84/ function mainJump or so, I don't really know what the math means.
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johnki: I really, really recommend using and [url=http://haxepunk.com/]Haxepunk or HaxeFlixel.

Haxe is almost identical to ActionScript but open source and able to compile to multiple targets, has better speed for the most part, and although it will take some understanding of the command line to get them set up, the move is worth it.

HaxePunk and HaxeFlixel are ports of two game libraries originally written in ActionScript that pretty much allow you to jump straight into programming. HaxePunk has a lot of documentation due to being almost 100% compatible with all FlashPunk tutorials/scripts (exempting the fact that you have to change imports) and HaxeFlixel also has a similar amount of documentation due to Flixel with the main difference being that it's structured differently, though different people work better with different frameworks. You'd probably have to try both.
Reality is, I'm not sure I'll ever be able to fully wrap my head around programming, or at least be able to do it from scratch. (I majored [well, almost done] in graphic design even though I was interested in interactive media.) Even with your explanation (which I very much appreciate), it was hard for me to remember what each line did, or what each section of math really did. I just bring this up in an attempt to try to help you relate to my situation. I simply cannot automatically read something in a programming language and understand what it means, unlike other talented people.

Nevertheless, I'm interested in creating my own games and would like to persevere. Can you provide me with some solid game tutorials for HaxeFlixel? I suppose it might be best to start from scratch with the documentation provided on the site, but the reality is I'm not sure it will ultimately be worth spending the time to read through it all, and I won't be as motivated (unlike if I was working on something - a game - that I knew I would be interested in.)

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tfishell: If somebody would be willing to provide a detailed explanation for lines 84 - 114 (or just 100 - 109, perhaps), I would appreciate it.
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johnki: http://pastebin.com/H5XtuyyV

Did my best to explain it, although when it comes to collisions with actual level objects and all, it will be exponentially easier if you use an existing framework because it's a lot of math dealing with intersections of two objects that may or may not be the same shape and all.
As I said above, thank you for taking the time to do this. Really hard for me to comprehend, but I certainly tried.
I can kind of understand how the character starts at (0,0) and moving up or down brings him into the negatives or positives, but I don't understand why going up brings him into negatives and down brings him into the positives; I would think it would be the other way around. And I'm not really sure why 75 and 50 were chosen.


Can you link to what you mean by an "existing framework"? Were you referring to Haxe, Haxepunk, or HaxeFlixel?

EDIT: (In the meantime, until I hear back from you, I will continue with my current tutorial.)
EDIT: Downloaded HaxeFlixel, but will still wait to hear back.
Post edited June 23, 2013 by tfishell
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tfishell: Nevertheless, I'm interested in creating my own games and would like to persevere. Can you provide me with some solid game tutorials for HaxeFlixel? I suppose it might be best to start from scratch with the documentation provided on the site, but the reality is I'm not sure it will ultimately be worth spending the time to read through it all, and I won't be as motivated (unlike if I was working on something - a game - that I knew I would be interested in.)
I don't use Flixel or HaxeFlixel (but rather have heard that many people have found it easy to start out with, as well), so I don't know what good tutorials there are for it. I know one thing a lot of people do/did is look through the source for each of the feature demos. Other than that, Googling "Flixel tutorials" will get you Flash tutorials but, like HaxePunk, they should be marginally the same as their Flash counterparts if I remember correctly. There are a few differences, but just looking at the source for one of the Haxe versions should sort that out relatively quickly, the big ones being that 1. Local class variables can't be declared and initialized at the same time, 2. The constructor is not a function that is the same name as the class, and 3. Differing package names in imports usually.

Just a few I found right off the bat:

https://github.com/AdamAtomic/flixel/wiki/Seifer-Tim's-Tutorial

http://dustytome.net/moot/2012/08/haxe-flixel-platformer-tutorial/

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tfishell: As I said above, thank you for taking the time to do this. Really hard for me to comprehend, but I certainly tried.
I can kind of understand how the character starts at (0,0) and moving up or down brings him into the negatives or positives, but I don't understand why going up brings him into negatives and down brings him into the positives; I would think it would be the other way around. And I'm not really sure why 75 and 50 were chosen.
Well, the character itself doesn't start at (0,0) unless you put it there. Rather, think of a graph with inverted y values where the top-left corner of the screen is (0,0).

I couldn't tell you why 75 and 50 were chosen either.

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tfishell: Can you link to what you mean by an "existing framework"? Were you referring to Haxe, Haxepunk, or HaxeFlixel?
HaxePunk, HaxeFlixel, or anything else like them.
Post edited June 23, 2013 by johnki
I don't know if anybody mentioned it, but if you're starting with C++, check these SDL tutorials, for beginners (starts with key inputs, getting an image, sprites, moving the dot on the screen, etc.)

http://lazyfoo.net/SDL_tutorials/index.php
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Plaguebringer: I don't know if anybody mentioned it, but if you're starting with C++, check these SDL tutorials, for beginners (starts with key inputs, getting an image, sprites, moving the dot on the screen, etc.)

http://lazyfoo.net/SDL_tutorials/index.php
There is also a book on SDL programming by Sam Lantinga... don't remember the title though.
So, I started learning Javascript and Unity, but then found a year-old textbook about Actionscript for Flash CS5, so decided to read through the book, follow the examples, and see what I can learn. (using CS3, but close enough; apologies to johnki, I really needed some strong structure and will stick with Flash for now) I'm about 60 pages in (just finished "Using Timers"), it's interesting and I can follow a bit of the logic if I read through it out loud and in chronological order ("So, this event listener will trigger this function, which will cause a blue circle to appear"), but it's definitely doesn't come naturally, nor do I think I could do this without guides of some kind. (And only having one monitor is kind of annoying, because I like to see both the stage and the script panel, but they both take up a lot of room.)

Flash is dying, but fortunately AS is similar to Javascript, so hopefully that will help me when I go back to Codecademy, or get books on Javascript and Unity (I have my eye on one or two on Amazon).

And even if all of this ends up being a waste of time and meaningless, I'll always have my self-pity to comfort me. Right now I just need to finish what I start, imo.

ANYWAY, I was wondering if somebody could help me out with the logic in the attached .FLA file (change extension from the PNG), a mishmash of script I put together thanks to previous lessons. I was able to pull off the character moving right and left in another file, by using two different event listeners and functions (one for right and one for left).

I assumed that I would be able to use a single event listener and function for movement, just using "if" for moving right with the spacebar, and "if else" or "else" for moving left with the tab key. But something isn't working correctly, and I can't seem to figure it out. I assume I missed something or the logic just doesn't follow correctly.
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