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1  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Hello! on: 2011-06-24 23:59:52
I think you just need a good mix of hands-on programming, theory, and concepts in programming classes. Just programming, as you say, will leave you making bad code. But I don't agree with you that you should learn to program first and concepts later, I think doing them side-by-side  (along with theory to get you thinking) is the right way to go. I learned to program long before I learned any concepts and I think I suffered for it - now I have an aversion to learning new techniques and instead I quickly hack out solutions. :/

Eli! I checked your site out man. It looks great and I checked out your resume. How did you learn how to program and such? The Kind Words section gives great insight about your abilities, and it leaves me curious as to how you became so talented.  Cool
2  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Hello! on: 2011-06-24 17:50:36
Well, thanks for all the information you guys. I really appreciate it. Hopefully I'll be able to start making one of those old text adventure games with choices and such within the next month or two. Again, thanks for all the information.  Cheesy
3  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Hello! on: 2011-06-23 17:24:13
So, does that mean that LWJGL is slightly better than JOGL?

do not expect an answer to this question without starting a flamewar Smiley

lets just say both libraries have a slightly different aims, one is focused entirely towards games while the other is more of a general purpose opengl binding.

don't forget there are other libraries like JOAL, JOCL which can be used with JOGL to give it similar features to LWJGL.

Haha, ok. So, LWJGL is the one thats focused towards gaming, correct?
4  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Hello! on: 2011-06-23 17:15:34
So, does that mean that LWJGL is slightly better than JOGL?
5  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Hello! on: 2011-06-23 17:02:47
Well to save you from the confusion of all the different tools out there, let me explain:
-For now since you are a beginner, learning Java syntax, core classes, and command line stuff is very important and should be your first priority. Unlike both earlier replies, do not jump straight into graphics. Make basic command line games using ASCII art. Make almost any game you can think of for the command line. Eclipse is a very useful and powerful tool and as much as you may like it too, I also recommend you to start with the command line. Write an entire command line app using just notepad, compile it, and run it. Start using packages and experience the pain and confusion of compiling and running programs that are in packages.

I did some simple programs with the command line. The compiling was too much of a pain for my liking. I never got into packages though. I'll look them up. thenewboston seems like there are some pretty indepth tutorials. I think there was one that explains packages.

-When you feel you know and understand Java well enough, jump into graphics using Java2D. Java2D is the java.awt packages and subpackages. These allow you to do custom drawing and offer very, very powerful tools for making 2D graphical apps and games. Also you may learn Swing, Java's GUI widget toolkit. It offers nice tools for making GUIs (Graphical User Interface).

The 2D games are what I'm hoping to towards the middle/end of my summer vacation.

-While you are becoming proficient with Java2D, you will learn and accept one grave and heart-breaking truth: Java2D is slow and unsuitable for professional and graphically expensive games. However, despite this shortcoming, it is the perfect playground for gaming beginners. I advise you to not advance until you have learned basic game systems, designs, code architectural organization, etc...

Nooooo... I hate heart-breaking truths. They're unavoidable though. Thanks for the heads up. Smiley

-Finally, when you notice you are ready for hard-core, speed-hungry games, you may jump into the OpenGL bandwagon. OpenGL is a portable high-level API to interface with graphics cards. It is portable in the sense that it works on almost all graphics cards and all systems, and high level since it abstracts away the differences in graphics card functions and drivers. This means you get to skip the slowness of Java2D is be able to directly access the power and performance of raw graphics card awesomeness. This may all seem neat and amazing but there is 1 drawback......its API is written in C (another language). This means you can't really access it directly from Java without writing native code doing a lot of complicated stuff. Well fear not, a bunch of really cool people wrote a library that lets you access these functions and more, and these cool people named it the Lightweight Java Game Library (LWJGL). As gouessej mentioned, another group of cool people wrote a similar library and called it JOGL. They are both almost exactly the same and the only difference is in your perception of it and your choice. However, it seems the LWJGL community is far bigger than the JOGL community and there is a lot more support for it.

I knew about the LWJGL. I took a peak at some of the documentation and it looks really confusing to me. I bet if I look back at it once I become proficient enough, I'll wonder what I was thinking at this point in time. One question though: What do you they are both "almost" exactly the same? Are there subtle differences or one or two major differences?

EDIT: I'm expecting 20 medals from typing out this entire thing Wink

Medals?  Huh
6  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Hello! on: 2011-06-23 12:47:56
Thank you for the quick reply Nam! I would say it's safe to say that my skill level is around that of... NONE. Like I said, my programming teacher, for lack of a nicer word, sucks. The lack of hands-on experience within that class is what is holding me back. Right now, I'm installing Eclipse on my laptop. I have it on my desktop, but I like to be out in my living room instead of my bedroom during the summer months (living room has AC, bedroom does not). I just noticed that the Indigo package was released, so I'm installing that. I should update my Helios package on my desktop though. I bought the Killer Game Programming in Java book, but I didn't understand anything about threading, so I figured I'd have to start from scratch and learn the very basics of Java all over again. I may transition to using an engine later on, but I'd like to stick with straight coding for now. You are right tho Nam, the old school games like Pong and Tic Tac Toe are the easiest to program (that I can think of right off the top of my head). Thank you for the recommendation to thenewboston as well. I'll check the site out.  Smiley
7  Discussions / General Discussions / Hello! on: 2011-06-23 11:57:17
Hello JGO,

I'm a complete beginner at Java. I started taking Computer Programming at my high school at the start of my Sophomore year (I'll be starting my Senior year come the end of August), and I really haven't learned much... My teacher doesn't really do much teaching, it's more rambling and lecturing than actual programming. I need the hands-on experience to really learn something like Java. Anyway, I was looking around for a community centered around Java and game programming/development and I heard this was the best one around, due to the friendliness of the forum members and how helpful they are. I would really like some help in learning Java, as I plan on going to college to become a Game Designer/Programmer. The college I'm hoping to go to is DeVry University, and I'll be trying to get a Bachelor's Degree in their Game & Simulation Programming course. I was wondering, is there any advice anyone can give me about what game companies such as Bethesda Softworks, Epic Games, Valve, etc. look for in a programmer/designer? I'll be sticking around this board for a while; hopefully I'll learn a lot and it'll help me with my transition into C++ and other languages.
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