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Whenever I ask a question about game development in an online forum I always get suggestions like learning line drawing algorithms, bit level image manipulation and video decompression etc.

However looking at games like God of War 3, I find it hard to believe that these games could be developed using such low level techniques.

The sheer awesomeness of such games defy any comprehensible(for me) programming methodology.

Besides the gaming hardware is really a monster now days. So it stands to reason that the developers would work at a higher level of abstraction.

What is the latest development methodology in the gaming industry? How is it that a team of 30-35 developers (of which most is management and marketing fluff) able to make such mind boggling games?

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closed as not a real question by Josh Petrie, Nicol Bolas, doppelgreener, Laurent Couvidou, John McDonald Sep 17 '12 at 19:30

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

an algorithm has nothing to do with the level of abstraction that you want to use in your code, games like GoW3 are possible because of engineer and programmers that can code the right tools, there is nothing new about this, the "new part" is the much more powerful VGA and the new hardware, not a particular methodology, also a big part of the design depends on what language you want to use. – user827992 Sep 8 '12 at 16:11
"new part is the much more powerful VGA" I'm sure this increased horse power can't be tapped into without an equal advance in software. For example it won't do any good to run dos on i7. "design depends on what language you want to use" Exactly. It's about the right tools. And that's my question. What are the right tools to tap into these powerful devices? – Monika Michael Sep 8 '12 at 16:15
you are not asking something specific, you are asking for a game developer course, your question is incredibly broad and can't be answered without a more specific definition, but most of the time there is nothing really special about programming games or programming office apps, you always need to know all the internals of the language of choice and need to get a broad view about the possible application design and patterns that you can make. – user827992 Sep 8 '12 at 16:22
"your question is incredibly broad" Incredibly broad? I'd imagine asking for GoW3 architecture is a reasonable and answerable scope. – Monika Michael Sep 8 '12 at 16:24
@Monika: Welcome to GameDev.SE! Your question is far too broad to be reasonably answered. We prefer much more specific questions about aspects of game development. And no, "asking for GoW3 architecture" is no less broad. – Nicol Bolas Sep 8 '12 at 16:43
up vote 5 down vote accepted

Well often light-weight-frameworks like libGCM or PSGL (those are a few examples on the PS3). The Xbox uses DirectX (but the Xbox version exposes more hardware features and is lighter since there is only a simple OS between hardware and software). On the PC it is usually standard OpenGL or DirectX.

Higher-level frameworks called engines are often used as well. There are engines that take care of almost anything. Think of the Unreal engine by Epic, Source by Valve, or Frostbyte by Dice. There are also specialized engines that take care of subsystems, for example engines that take care of all the sounds stuff (Miles) or all the video stuff (Bink).

So these frameworks and engines give you the abstraction that a programmer needs to skip the trivials and get straight to business. Still your assumption that just 30 devs are working on AAA games, and that most of these are in a managing role, is wrong. Usually there are tons of devs working on modifying the engines, a dozen working on the tool chain, a dozen working on the gameplay, and then some few more scattered elsewhere. Note that these numbers are an educated guess (I've interned at a subcontractor of Ubisoft) and can differ greatly depending on the project.

Please note that I've tried to find as much links as possible to give you some more background info, do check them, they are all unique and interesting links.

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Thanks names and references was what I wanted so I can experiment with new stuff. – Monika Michael Sep 8 '12 at 16:27

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