I'm a 20 year old programming student. I know fundamental programming in BASIC, C, C++ and JAVA. What I wanted to ask is, where do I go from here? Are there any books that the community can mention that will help me develop a game or at least learn game development? I've had a lot of ideas and really want to make some sort of prototype to see if I'm suited for the industry.

I really don't mind learning any new languages but I need to know what I should begin with. A good book that will help with a little more understanding as I go up will be very helpful. Maybe a tutorial to develop some basic 2D games like a side-scroller, snake or pocket tanks in an easy to understand SDK?

I know that to get some credit under your belt, you need to be able to make a few games on your own.

Also, what platform should I start on? The PC, iOS or Android (as an introduction) for now. I don't want to get into high level game design just yet. Just something a bit basic to help out in future development.

Anything pointing me in the right direction will be really really helpful.

Edit: Also, I want to say that I'm looking towards this from a game designer's point of view more than a game programmer. I want suggestions on any SDKs or easy to use programs I can use to understand game design. Then delve deeper into the programming after that.

Not as employment but as developing your own games (for now).

  • \$\begingroup\$ I've written a game making tutorial that covers fundamentals, at iki.fi/sol/gp - it's c++ based, but everything there is relevant to game making, whatever you end up using.. \$\endgroup\$ – Jari Komppa Dec 10 '12 at 9:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ you may also wish to glance at my game making course slides at iki.fi/sol/gpc \$\endgroup\$ – Jari Komppa Dec 10 '12 at 9:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ On your edit: if you just want to make games and not worry about programming that much, pick up unity. \$\endgroup\$ – Jari Komppa Dec 10 '12 at 10:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ Okay, any particular locations or books I can refer in that case? \$\endgroup\$ – Rohan Menon Dec 10 '12 at 10:03
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    \$\begingroup\$ Welcome. Unfortunately "how do I get started" questions are off topic for this site per the scope defined in the FAQ: gamedev.stackexchange.com/faq \$\endgroup\$ – Maximus Minimus Dec 10 '12 at 10:16

Start making a game. That is how you get started in game development.

Asking other people how to start isn't starting. Searching Google isn't starting. Reading books isn't starting.

Actually writing code is starting. Making mock-ups using boards or cards or dice is starting. This is how you get started in game development, by starting to actually make a game, using whatever skills and talents you have right now. And slowly improving those skills and talents over time, while continuing to make games.

When I first started making games, I wrote them in AppleBasic. For a text display. No graphics at all. I made dozens of them like that. Competitive multiplayer arcade games, even, programmed entirely using text output, and a single keyboard for input. Now my games use shaders and touchscreen inputs and are cross-platform and all, but.. that's not required. Especially when you're just starting.

If you want to start making games, then you have to make games. Anything else -- particularly fixating on learning to do things "the right way" (as determined by what techniques are trendy this week) -- is just procrastination, and counter-productive.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I agree that the best way to get started is to just start. To the question "what platform should I start on?", I would just recommend PC. Like the answer says, start small, and PC has less overhead to start. Just make some console games at first. \$\endgroup\$ – Thomas Marnell Dec 10 '12 at 12:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ Will do, thanks a ton. I implemented a few random ideas in BASIC(I know thats the dumbest thing to start off with). Hardly anything you'd classify as playable but just checking out interactivity in it. I'll try doing something in C++ or C# next I think. \$\endgroup\$ – Rohan Menon Dec 10 '12 at 13:52

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