Completely read Head First C#.

Should I read something else or get personal with XNA from here on? Got links?

Edit: Hobby. Interested in 2D and 2.5D gamedev for personal fun, nothing serious. Multiplayer(in 2D/2.5D games) is also a very interesting topic for me. Basically not sure where to go now from here.

  • \$\begingroup\$ What sort of background do you have in software development (if any)? \$\endgroup\$
    – Cypher
    Aug 20 '11 at 1:16
  • \$\begingroup\$ Nothing at all. \$\endgroup\$
    – Skips
    Aug 20 '11 at 2:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ possible duplicate of Starting Game Development in C# \$\endgroup\$
    – bummzack
    Aug 24 '11 at 9:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ Reading books doesn't make you a programmer. Programming does. Start with a simple idea and implement it (reading more when necessary). Then, do something more complex. Ad infinitum \$\endgroup\$ Aug 24 '11 at 15:26

Well, start programming!

You can google for some basic tutorials to get you started, but if you don't know with what game to start, this answer is a great starting point: What are good games to "earn your wings" with?

As for books, I would suggest you start from something like XNA 4.0 Game Development by Example: Beginner's Guide and then move to Building XNA 2.0 Games: A Practical Guide for Independent Game Development

Personally, I would get my hands dirty and then move on reading a book for more advanced topics.

  • \$\begingroup\$ "Microsoft XNA Game Studio 3.0 Unleashed" received harsh reviews. "XNA 4.0 Game Development by Example: Beginner's Guide" might be cool though. "What are good games to "earn your wings" with?"'s an awesome find too. T..Th..Thanks. \$\endgroup\$
    – Skips
    Aug 20 '11 at 1:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ Sorry, you are right for the second book. I was actually looking for the book I read from the creator of the XBLIG Dishwasher. I edited my answer to the correct book. \$\endgroup\$
    – pek
    Aug 20 '11 at 2:05
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Ditto. AppHub has lots of examples to get you started on basic things. Pick something specific you want to make from the "earn your wings" games list. You learn a lot better when you're trying to accomplish something. It might be messy at first, but you can always read up on how to do it better incrementally after each project. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 20 '11 at 12:10

I hate to link to an existing answer, but the one I posted here might be useful: Wise approach to becoming good at C# XNA

Start by making something simple. Maybe a static sprite that moves across the screen when you press certain buttons. Add some objects to play with collision. Then when you feel comfortable with that work on sprite animations, and a simple camera. It really isn't hard.

If you want a jump start, look at something like Flat Red Ball. It is simple 2.5D game engine that might help. If you want to make your own, look at this tile engine series. It will show you stuff like how to make a camera, animations, collision, and the rest. There is also this 2d tutorial series. I don't have a nice playlist for it so you will have to search youtube for the different parts. For even more resources, check out the ever-growing list of samples on the App Hub site.

If you really want to take classes, I can vouch for http://LearnVisualStudio.net. I know a few people who have taken them, and have seen the content. It is presented nicely and easy to follow.

When in doubt, come back here and ask questions. The people here are very responsive and helpful. If you need help on general C#/programming concepts try http://stackoverflow.com. It is another wonderful resource.


I started XNA as an existing professional C# developer so it's a bit different but I found the samples in the educational catalog at create.msdn.com really useful.

They've got samples of most of the things you'll probably want to do. If videos are more your thing, they've got lots of those too.


I was at a similar position to you a few months back except I've done game development before so was looking to refresh things.

i found the following site very useful for getting me up and running again with simple 2D sprite displaying.



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