How Hard Is It To Make A Game If I Have Never Programmed?


Joined
Oct 8, 2003
Messages
588
Age
36
Location
South wales, UK.
Website
Visit site
I've never programmed anything before, at least not with code. But what code does the Pandora actually read anyway? i suppose its C or C++ stuff? I did start reading about java programming once but i got lost fairly easy and just gave up.. as much as i would like to be able to program games i dont think i have the patience, not to mention i always read that you need to be good at maths and i totally suck at it.

its nothing that seems easy to grasp and seems like the type of thing you always have to go back to a manual, or read up about something incase you forget

is there any way at all that you can learn and not forget?

the thing that annoys me it all seems to look like

if "blah" = "xxx" then go to > xxx or something like that anyway :blink:

shame there isnt some program which just lets you choose things in clear english and converts it to specific code.

My father was talking about how he programmed 2 dice to roll when you pressed the space bar on the spectrum, it was already in a mag saying what to do but it still took him hours apparently.. all that time just to make a pair of dice roll random numbers? :unsure: see now i think that is one big thing that would put me off just trying to learn it :p
 

kloplop321

Psychotic Trans-dimensional Being
Joined
May 20, 2008
Messages
1,145
Website
kloplop321.com
this is not BASIC or Assembly jumping :p

It would be hard for you.
I started trying to make games, I gave up, and found more fun in making applications that are not even close to gaming related, and now I have ended up where I do PHP development for pocket money :p
 

hedwards

Active Member
Joined
Oct 7, 2008
Messages
872
Kloplop321 said:
this is not BASIC or Assembly jumping :p

It would be hard for you.
I started trying to make games, I gave up, and found more fun in making applications that are not even close to gaming related, and now I have ended up where I do PHP development for pocket money :p
Indeed, but it really does depend upon the type of game that one wishes to create. Tetris or card game is much, much less difficult than a FPS, RPG or even a platformer.

Tetris is fairly simple depending upon how one wishes to go about it. A set of methods for creating the blocks, a set for moving them right or left, a set for shifting them down, and a set up for checking bounds. There's a bit more to it, but that's why there's so many of them. I think that one of the CSC classes at the college I went to had the class do tetris in java.

It's not even worth trying to do anything more complicated than that until one has a fairly firm grasp of programming. Mine sweeper is probably another good candidate.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Alpha2

Heroic Autobot
Joined
Feb 3, 2004
Messages
3,821
Age
47
Location
New York
Website
the-real-alpha2.com
Your best bet is to link up with someone who CAN program and work together on a project otherwise it's a deadend at this point. It's not simple HTML or PHP stuff.
 

Xanas

Still Fresh
Joined
Feb 2, 2008
Messages
77
Lots of attempts have been made at various sorts of programming language, even going to "plain language" attempts. Basically, it's that some people are very oriented towards programming and most are just not.

I'm somewhere in the middle myself. I code at work in VBA (which is super easy for me, and nightmarishly easy for others, but for most people looks confusing). I have done some php, c++, etc. as well. If you aren't into java/C++ you might be cool with something like python (or so I hear, I've never actually tried it) or ruby. I hear good things about those languages in terms of ease of use from others.

If you don't think you have a knack for programming the best thing to go for would be art, and after that perhaps music or sound efects or even something like voice acting if you think you might be good there.
 

GregorR

Still Fresh
Joined
Dec 10, 2008
Messages
31
A bit blunt, but ...

I'm a CS graduate student. I've seen plenty of years of first-year CS students. All have one thing in common: Many of them want to program because they want to write games, and those who do almost always drop out within in the first year. Programming games is not easy, not fun, and generally the tedium of programming overwhelms any creativity very quickly. In the real world, the people who write games are not the people who implement them.

(A side-note since I mentioned CS a few times: No, CS is not programming, but the first year is. Programming degrees are just CS lite anyway)
 

nikkopt

Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2008
Messages
235
Location
Portugal
There are other things involved in the creation of a game.. Models, animations, textures.. etc..
It really depends on the game.. You can prolly start with some simple vector based graphics.. A sudoku for ex, just a grid and some numbers. There are lots of libs and plugins that can make the base code for yourself, leaving you only the logic.
Or you can start by creating a MUD :p it's just text..
 

kloplop321

Psychotic Trans-dimensional Being
Joined
May 20, 2008
Messages
1,145
Website
kloplop321.com
I am self taught. I have done C for the PSP, VB.net for windows, and I currently do PHP because I love how it works with arrays(my best friend)
I am only 16 though.
and yeah, I gave up on games because I simply did not have the time to come up with what to do, AND code it
 

nikkopt

Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2008
Messages
235
Location
Portugal
Shadow of Chaos said:
the thing that annoys me it all seems to look like

if "blah" = "xxx" then go to > xxx or something like that anyway :blink:

shame there isnt some program which just lets you choose things in clear english and converts it to specific code.

high-level programming is almost english..

if v1 < v2 then v1 = v1 + v2

"if variable1 is lower than variable2 then add the contents of variable2 to variable1"

if v1 < v2 then v2 = v1

"if variable1 is lower than variable2 then replace the contents of variable2 by the contents of variable1"

it's easier than 1010001010101010100101 and assembly
 
Last edited by a moderator:

closetwam

Member
Joined
Mar 27, 2008
Messages
105
Location
the north
Website
Visit site
Shadow of Chaos said:
its nothing that seems easy to grasp and seems like the type of thing you always have to go back to a manual, or read up about something incase you forget

is there any way at all that you can learn and not forget?
The best way to remember is to keep using what you learn. Once you grasp the fundamentals well, you'll be able to stop programming indefinitely and pick it up again later fairly quickly. You won't really forget the fundamentals, you'll just forget some syntax and you'll be able to brush up on it in 2 days and be back in business.


QUOTE

shame there isnt some program which just lets you choose things in clear english and converts it to specific code.




If someone writes a book that contains one million different sentences, and tells me that I may use those sentences to write my own book, what are the odds that I won't find the exact sentence I am looking for at some point? Is it possible I would like to write my own sentence?

In the production of most game, the programmer is going to try to implement some things differently than anyone else has done. A program that lets me choose how to make a program, cannot anticipate every possibility, but the possibilities are limitless.


edit: If you're still interested in programming, read my recommendation in this thread here
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Zeno Arrow

Member
Joined
Oct 5, 2008
Messages
195
Shadow of Chaos said:
the thing that annoys me it all seems to look like

if "blah" = "xxx" then go to > xxx or something like that anyway :blink:

shame there isnt some program which just lets you choose things in clear english and converts it to specific code.
Maybe you should take a look here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/4GL
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visual_programming_language

Ultimately, like learning any language, don't expect to be able to know how to say/do everything straight away, there is a learning curve involved. Look here if you want some groundings in the basics on high-level programming:
http://www.freenetpages.co.uk/hp/alan.gauld/
Specifically 'The common features of all programs' section on this page:
http://www.freenetpages.co.uk/hp/alan.gauld/tutwhat.htm

Shadow of Chaos said:
My father was talking about how he programmed 2 dice to roll when you pressed the space bar on the spectrum, it was already in a mag saying what to do but it still took him hours apparently.. all that time just to make a pair of dice roll random numbers? :unsure: see now i think that is one big thing that would put me off just trying to learn it :p
Old computer magazines used to have programming listings that you could type in yourself, I suppose in an effort to get people making the most of their machines. I missed out on this, but I've heard stories of people who tried and failed simply because they had made a typo (so the program wouldn't run), and as they didn't really understand what they were typing in all their efforts were wasted because they lacked the insight and confidence to fix the issue. The best thing to do when learning how to program is start out simply and build your way up to more complex programs like games.

The first program you should try and build is something simple like "Hello World":
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hello_world_program
If you're really not confident, try programming it in something like FreeBASIC:
http://www.freebasic.net/index.php/download
http://www.roesler-ac.de/wolfram/hello.htm

CODE
'Hello World in FreeBASIC

print "Hello World"


Hope this helps.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

PokeParadox

Founder of Pirate Games - Penjin Coder
Staff member
Joined
Dec 8, 2005
Messages
6,571
Age
37
Location
UK
Website
pokeparadox.itch.io
WEBSITE
https://github.com/pokeparadox
YOUTUBE
pokeparadox
nikkopt said:
Shadow of Chaos said:
the thing that annoys me it all seems to look like

if "blah" = "xxx" then go to > xxx or something like that anyway :blink:

shame there isnt some program which just lets you choose things in clear english and converts it to specific code.

high-level programming is almost english..

if v1 < v2 then v1 = v1 + v2

"if variable1 is lower than variable2 then add the contents of variable2 to variable1"

if v1 < v2 then v2 = v1

"if variable1 is lower than variable2 then replace the contents of variable2 by the contents of variable1"

it's easier than 1010001010101010100101 and assembly

Exactly... the programming is the easy part, it is like learning another language, but less complicated than learning a foreign language, since the rules are simpler generally. The hard part is working out how to do what you want to do with what you have available to you.

If you can learn the syntax, you can write code.
If you can break problems and situations(Like make my Hero jump) down so you know how to represent them by variables and statements, then you have the basics for being able to program games.

It is amazing the dropout rate for CS and even the Computer Games Tech degree I took. There was a room packed with people in 1st year
by 3rd year about 8 of us were left. :) It gets too much for some people.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Azure

Trust the recursion...
Joined
May 21, 2003
Messages
3,805
Location
California, USA
Have you tried looking at LISP languages, like Scheme? Scheme is used here at UC Berkeley for the introductory CS course and it's great for beginners to get into the programming mindset.
 

frozenflame108

Still Fresh
Joined
Mar 4, 2008
Messages
6
If your looking to make point-and-click adventure games then AGS is a great program to use

It uses a language similar to C++ but you can also just use the interaction editor for most things (like picking sentences for what you want to happen after a certain event)

It will at least help you understand how programming works. I went from that to VB.net and now Java.

Good luck finding a way to run it on pandora though.
 

MarkoeZ

arr matey?
Joined
May 21, 2008
Messages
1,183
Age
41
Website
projectinfinity.org.uk
Well, as PokeParadox did not mention it, i will ;) I learned/am learning c++ with Penjin/PandoraPanic the last couple of months, and made 3 minigames up till now, slowly getting more complex. It's a framework for building (mini)games and is very easy to pick up. See my sig for the links, and don't hesitate to message me if you get stuck or want more info on something.

Also the c++ video's at 3D Buzz were very helpful to me. just register and watch (a couple of times rewind probably ; ).

Good luck anyway!

Edit: i reread your original post, c++ might not be the thing for you, but it's very nice when it works ;)
 

Exophase

Nothing good will ever come of Exophase.
Joined
Sep 21, 2006
Messages
10,308
Age
37
Location
Cleveland OH
Azure said:
Have you tried looking at LISP languages, like Scheme? Scheme is used here at UC Berkeley for the introductory CS course and it's great for beginners to get into the programming mindset.



Scheme may be good for beginners but I don't think it's a good language for getting into programming, because most mainstream programming is a huge departure from it. They'll just have to relearn when they get into it. I went to a big Scheme school for my grad degree and I saw this first hand a decent amount.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Pseudonym

Still Fresh
Joined
Oct 11, 2008
Messages
76
Website
Visit site
I just want to say something: I tried to jump into C/C++ when I got interested in programming. And, I just confused/frustrated myself more and more. Now I'm learning a simpler language (python + pygame) and I'm getting into the computer mindset once again.
 

darkblu

Member
Joined
Oct 6, 2008
Messages
640
Exophase said:
Azure said:
Have you tried looking at LISP languages, like Scheme? Scheme is used here at UC Berkeley for the introductory CS course and it's great for beginners to get into the programming mindset.



Scheme may be good for beginners but I don't think it's a good language for getting into programming, because most mainstream programming is a huge departure from it. They'll just have to relearn when they get into it. I went to a big Scheme school for my grad degree and I saw this first hand a decent amount.

while what you say is empirically true, i'd say let's allow people to step out of the sinister loop which is today's 'mainstream OOP'. it's a chicken-and-egg problem - mainstream is the mess it is because people need to get accustomed to the mess in order to get into mainstream.

just look at what somebody who refused to 'go mainstream' can do:
http://ynniv.com/blog/2005/12/lisp-in-game...gs-jax-and.html
 
Last edited by a moderator:

bustaballs

Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2007
Messages
196
I started developing games on the PS1 version of RPG Maker when I was but a preteen. I eventually moved onto PC dev when I got my first computer. I made stuff in ZZT then which used a simple scripting language called ZZT-OOP, which I mastered very quickly. The only real programming languages I ever got close to becoming advanced in since then were various versions of BASIC.

I've made quite a few games and proof-of-concept demos in visual basic. Most of them didn't involve any external libraries at all. I plan on becoming more advanced in C++ myself and plan on getting a physical copy of this book:

http://www.amazon.com/Beginning-Through-Ga...d/dp/1598633600
 

TheGoodDoktor

Still Fresh
Joined
Sep 6, 2008
Messages
74
Gregor Richards said:
Programming games is not easy, not fun, and generally the tedium of programming overwhelms any creativity very quickly. In the real world, the people who write games are not the people who implement them.

Apart from the first point (programming games not being easy) that simply isn't true. Programming games is loads of fun, I've been doing it for over 12 years professionally and I would have stopped ages ago if it wasn't fun anymore. Also I've always been involved in the design of games I've worked on.

My advice would be to start off learning a language which is simple that you can do fun things with like Lua. Hopefully someone (I will if I ever get the time) will make something like LuaPlayer for the Pandora and you can make games quickly and easily with that.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Top