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  Java-Gaming at Minecon  (Read 6194 times)
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Offline HeroesGraveDev

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« Reply #30 - Posted 2013-10-21 04:03:44 »

Typing code isn't hard. (Speaking relatively)
Programming is not simply typing code. Programming is finding a problem, designing a solution, and then comes the typing of code. A good programmer can do steps 2&3 at the same time.

The key part is finding (and implementing) a solution using logic.

Too many people that watch me code say "How can you read/understand that?"
What I think is: "You have no idea. This is just the tip of the iceberg"
What I say is "How do people understand foreign languages?"

A good point to teach would be that programming is more about the thought than the code.

Offline Opiop
« Reply #31 - Posted 2013-10-21 10:16:10 »

A good point to teach would be that programming is more about the thought than the code.
This is a good point. However, I still struggle sometimes with actually translating my thoughts into code. I think that teaching the correct way to code, and teaching the functions is just as important in the beginning as teaching coding practices. I've picked up my coding practices along the way, but I still don't really know how to make a real game, even after two years of coding. I can make simple ones, but no one has ever really shown me how to make a real game, so I struggle through it and piece it together and maybe someday I'll get there. I guess my point is, is that we still need to teach people the actual language first. Coding practices and logic are nothing if you can't even print something to a console.

Wow, that was the worst little rant ever :/

Offline wookoouk

Senior Newbie

« Reply #32 - Posted 2013-10-21 20:17:47 »

I beleive Java2D is the best place to start but it is just a starting point, game development has become a fight for platform support. It has become 'bad practice' to write a game that works on one platform. libs like libGDX are fantastic for providing that multi-platform support but they can feel like jumping into the deep end of programming.

I personally feel giving the guests a teardown of Catacomb Snatch, explaining how came together on a basic level would be good. As little 'here is what you type' as possible, the guests can take it from there if they want to continue down the development path.
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Offline Opiop
« Reply #33 - Posted 2013-10-21 20:25:57 »

Java2D is a good place to start, but open them up to the other possibilities. Don't forget to push upon them that there are plenty of other libraries. I don't think coding a game for only one platform is bad though... Sure, you won't have as wide of a user base, but its your choice as the dev.

I feel like explaining very lightly how the core game mechanics come together would be good. Use a flow chart and show them how this class interacts with this other one, and then go into the code and actually show them. Show them a simple game though, you want to hook them into programming, not push them away because it looks too hard.

Man, I really want to go now Wink

Offline SHC
« Reply #34 - Posted 2013-10-22 13:41:29 »

The key part is finding (and implementing) a solution using logic.

Our lecturer is giving some expressions of C on the chalkboard and we have to evaluate them on a paper without a computer nor a calculator. Weird way of explaining logics.

Offline QQQ

Senior Newbie

Medals: 1

« Reply #35 - Posted 2013-10-23 18:05:39 »

One last thing that is important to tell them. I expect they will all try/want to create a game like Minecraft. Tell them to start out small and be proud of little things. Slowly working your way into more complicated things will always bring better quality and quantity of games.
Yes, motivation is the key. Motivate them! ^^

I think it's ok to use Java2D in the beginning as long as you know there are other APIs for graphics. I, too, started with Java2D and flying rectangles.
Show them a moving rectangle and then replace it with an image. This will demostrate how abstraction works.
Offline Sammidysam
« Reply #36 - Posted 2013-10-25 02:06:08 »

This just relates to the whole presentation thing and not the relation to JGO, but I wanted to share my opinions on the presentation.

It's very hard for one to realize that they cannot go straight into making games once they pick up a language.  These people who are looking at Minecraft will probably think of Java to program with if they realize it is programmed in that language.  I started off with Java, partially because I thought Minecraft was awesome and partially because I wanted to fix the bugs you had mentioned in a blog post that Catacomb Snatch needed fixing (this is back in 2011 or something).  So I set it up and immediately I was very confused.  I started a game way too early, and the result was Hunger Games Board Game, which does not really use object-orientation at all.  So a very good point will definitely be to advise people not to jump into games too quickly.  Baby steps are critical.

You could mention that if they get discouraged with Java, that a more simple language may be better to start.  Some people are likely not prepared for the syntax of Java when they have never dealt with anything prior, so maybe Python or Ruby may be better for a start at times.  Even while only being a freshman in high school, I have helped somebody learn programming, and even though they were interested in it for the scientific simulation possibilities rather than the game creation possibilities, I started them with Python.  I did this because I had a friend before who would give up as soon as they reached any bug.  It is way easier to create a bug in programming than in scripting (though all of that is debatable).  I think that people who want to jump right into games will likely get discouraged squashing bugs.  Maybe hinting at the possibility of simpler languages for the start would be good.  Then, you can get into game development quicker than with a more-programming language like Java.

It's also nice to think of a color spectrum with programming vs. scripting.  You give one end to programming and one end to scripting.  Assembly/machine code goes to the programming end, and something like Python or simpler would go on the scripting end.  From there, many languages are between, and how much time you have and what you want to do determines where on the spectrum your language will be.
Offline princec

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« Reply #37 - Posted 2013-10-25 08:03:39 »

IMHO the syntax of Java is probably one of the most straightforward and easy to understand of all computer languages excepting BASIC. The reason for my opinion is the sheer consistency of the grammar and lack of kitchen-sinking, under-the-covers magic, and special cases. This really means a lot when you're trying to understand a language. Unfortunately it's all going to change with the addition of Lambdas (and generics didn't help) but both features can largely be avoided.

I still think BASIC is the best language out there to learn programming though. I await a decent dialect and tooling to this day based on the JVM.

Cas Smiley

Offline matheus23

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« Reply #38 - Posted 2013-10-25 11:59:00 »

I still think BASIC is the best language out there to learn programming though. I await a decent dialect and tooling to this day based on the JVM.

I don't get the sentence about the tooling. Do you want a decent IDE for BASIC that runs on the JVM or do you want a BASIC interpreter that runs / compiles to .class ?

Please elaborate Smiley

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Offline princec

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« Reply #39 - Posted 2013-10-25 13:06:45 »


An Eclipse plug in to handle the tooling side would be just fine.

Cas Smiley

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