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Now this might sound like a silly question and I apologize if this sort of question is not suited for stackexchange. But I am genuinely wondering this, and I feel like I get alot more proffesional awnsers on here.

I'm getting into game development and have only worked solo since my study is not primairly about games. I'm only interested at 2D games atm, so am not really in need of any external engines for physics and rendering and such. So usually write the engines myself.

I absolutely hate writing things as quadtree's and pathfinding algorithims, most of the time I wish I could just skip those parts and move on to programming the actual gameplay elements. Things that happen in the background don't really interest me at all. But at the same time, I can't stand it I don't know whats/how everything is happening in the background.

My dislike might be explained by my weak mathematical skills. My motivation gets me through, but it can take alot of time before I grasp the technical solution behind a problem.


Now is it normal to have such a dislike towards engine programming? Or do you (people who also work solo) enjoy programming the engine?

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The answer is "maybe, it depends on what you like" This might be a better question to ask in chat, actually. –  thedaian Oct 5 '11 at 0:22
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No its not abnormal.. Friend of mine loves doing gameplay like you mention like doing.. I personally prefer overall engine architecture and tool creation. Everyone likes to program in their own way/areas. At the end though, we all tend to like solving the problems to achieve the final product :D Also, your accept rate sucks. –  James Oct 5 '11 at 0:23
    
I think this question is better suited on programmers.stackexchange.com –  Coyote Oct 5 '11 at 0:40
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This is a highly subjective question without a real answer. –  Tetrad Oct 5 '11 at 2:49
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closed as not constructive by Tetrad Oct 5 '11 at 2:49

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2 Answers

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It's not supposed to be enjoyable if you don't like it... I mean it's not the most rewarding part of the job. You don't see the results immediately, there are more "interesting things" that you could be creating right now...

If you feel that way then yes it's normal, you are simply not an engine guy. You are attracted to the creative part of video games dev, not the engineering ;)

I don't mean that engine work leaves no room for creativity... to the contrary! I enjoy it from time to time. But wen you like visuals and interactions, it's not the most rewarding part that's it.

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Whenever looking at indiedeveloper devblogs I always see them speaking with such enthousiasm about their engine development. It was just a "oh god, is this the right thing for me?!" moment. Thanks for the response! –  omgnoseat Oct 5 '11 at 1:05
    
No worries. Many indies will enjoy working with the engine because it gives a different kind of reward and also it allows to have control over a custom made system dedicated to their project(s). So it's fun to do and the sense of accomplishment is even greater. But you don't have to love that part to succeed. This is why some indies use third party engines like Unity and still succeed. –  Coyote Oct 5 '11 at 1:39
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Different programmers are interested in different kinds of programming. I'm just the opposite to you - I love doing the low-level "systems" stuff, but I'm bored by coding gameplay mechanics, player controls, AI etc. It takes both engine coders and gameplay coders as well as others to make a well-rounded team.

If you're working on your own I'd recommend learning to use an off-the-shelf engine. You'll save a lot of time and jump right to the things that interest you. If you're curious about how some feature works, you can always poke around in their code to get an idea what's going on, but you don't need to understand every last detail the way you would to write it yourself.

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