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#1 MickeyIII  Icon User is offline

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Need help deciding on what to use...

Posted 17 August 2010 - 10:52 PM

I've done SOME Visual Basic 6.0 that my dad gave me from when he was in high school, but that's outdated and I hear most use C++, C# with / without XNA Game Studio, and Java and Java Script. I'm wanting to learn C++ with Direct X 9, Direct X 10 / Direct X 11 if I can get a copy of Windows 7. If it's recommended to me to use C# with XNA Game Studio instead, that's fine, too, but make sure you're stating that because it's the most standard and most efficient, and not because it's your opinion. I get tired of people harassing others when they "don't do it right" or what they're doing is not "normal", because there's just no need for that. If they are miss informed or not sure, just let them know and move on. They aren't hurting you!

Sorry for that short rant above, it just really bothers me to see that kind of stuff.

Also, not only do I need Windows 7 if I want to use Direct X 10 and 11, I need to know where I can find some modeling tools other than the crazily expensive stuff like Maya and 3DSMax that has good to great support for Direct X models...please do not mention Blender 3D unless you can provide some place to download a Plug-in for it that improves the Direct X Exporter when Animations are enabled. Every time I use it, and load it in DarkBasic Pro, it displays all garbled and looks NOTHING like what I just modeled. It always turns out as a bunch of triangles. Now, if I'm informed that it's because of the way DarkBasic Professional loads those models, sense DBPro has a funny .dbo (Dark Basic Object) FVF Format, and should be fine in other programs, then I will use it.

Also, where can I find some better Audio Composition Programs, again very cheap, or a free program that's at least half way decent? Again, I'm just a college student, my parents are paying for college, but that's because I owe them money for my PT Cruiser, and I have a small job that I still haven't gotten a promotion in like I was told that I was supposed to get and the hours are little to none per week because I work at Blockbuster Video. Enough said by mentioning Blockbuster, although I love it there, but job searching in Louisiana right now in this economy is like pulling teeth!

Anyway, to give a better picture of where I'm headed with this, when I'm done with school and I'm HIRED for a computer repair, networking, maintaining job position, I would like to, for a hobby and maybe some money on the side, start a small group or small business for simply creating games without being concerned about economy, staffing, financing, or better yet...NOT HAVING TO WORRY ABOUT KEEPING A JOB!!!

So, here it is in a list:

1. Which programming language would you recommend to me for what I'm doing? (not trying to start any arguments!)
2. Does Blender export correctly to direct x and DBPro is just too weird, or do I need something else?
3. Audio Composition / Creation? (I have FL Studio: Fruity Loops Edition, the cheapest version, for music, and it's NOT what I'm looking for.)

Thanks in advance,

MickeyIII

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Replies To: Need help deciding on what to use...

#2 modi123_1  Icon User is online

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Re: Need help deciding on what to use...

Posted 18 August 2010 - 08:08 AM

View PostMickeyIII, on 17 August 2010 - 11:52 PM, said:

<snip>
So, here it is in a list:

1. Which programming language would you recommend to me for what I'm doing? (not trying to start any arguments!)
2. Does Blender export correctly to direct x and DBPro is just too weird, or do I need something else?
3. Audio Composition / Creation? (I have FL Studio: Fruity Loops Edition, the cheapest version, for music, and it's NOT what I'm looking for.)

Thanks in advance,

MickeyIII


AT 1. XNA's good for windows and xbox game development. Quite a bit of help and well worth the learning. It all depends on the type of game you are attempting to make and your background.

AT 2: Try here:
http://forum.thegame...t=86821&b=3&p=3
specifically:

Quote

Maflash Posted: 11th Jun 2007 10:40 Edited: 11th Jun 2007 10:52
Standard export settings should work fine. Sometimes you have to do things like clean the mesh. I find that there are certain actions I've not identified yet, that cause the file to mess the exporter up.

So what I do with a new model is make sure I test major changes with the exporter and import it into DBP, dont forget to save every successful step. It might help to adjust the auto save just in case.

I also test the way I plan on working with a simple cylinder, and test vertex groups, vertex weights, modifiers and armature features then simple animations. The only thing I'm unsure of again is if you can have unassigned vertices or bones

With my final model, If I have to do something significant like add a weapon, I un-parent everything, adjust the vertex groups, then parent again before export.

By the way, I think its necessary to bake the animation, then apply it to the mesh.


Quote

Brain111 Posted: 11th Jun 2007 12:54
SUCCESS!!!

I used an earlier version of their export script and it works perfectly. Also, i figured out that it is very important to apply the rotation of the mesh and the armature by selecting each one seperately and hitting CTRL+A. This has to be done BEFORE you parent the model to the armature. Im including my .blend, my .x, the dark basic code, and the script, which you will have to copy into your blender/.blender/scripts directory.

That was the best feeling ever to see that work.


AT 3: What exactly *are* you looking for in requirements for an audio program? I got cheap and not "Fruity Loops" (for what ever reason I am not clear). What's your needs?
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#3 MickeyIII  Icon User is offline

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Re: Need help deciding on what to use...

Posted 18 August 2010 - 01:10 PM

Wow!

Thanks for the quick reply!

OK...I'm sorry I wasn't clear enough on my questions. Your answer for my first question helped. I will use one or the other depending on my skill and what needs to be done with it.

For the Blender 3D question (that's question number 2) I've read that ENTIRE thread, tried it all, tried different variations of what was suggested, and it was just too much of a hassle to get it to work in DBPro. I'm tired of DBPro for now anyway, so basically I need to know if it has to do with the DirectX Exporter for Blender, or if it's the program I'm using and the Direct X Exporter works fine...I've been doing a lot of searching on my own, which I'm NOT GOOD AT, and keep coming up with results from Google and other forums that make NO SENSE from what I searched for, so I'm doing something wrong.

As for question number 3, I need to be able to record AND create audio and audio effects...if I create it, I would like an ease of use interface for manipulating sine waves and the such. Also, I need music composition software that uses the standard notation format like Encore or Finale...my mom has Finale 2008 on her laptop and at school sense she's a junior high band director, and I have NO access to it! Finale is expensive and I don't need that much of a program, plus getting around in it is confusing and time consuming.

I hope that's more clear.

Also, as I'm playing around with C++ and C# + XNA, mostly VC++ 2008 Express Edition probably, I'm the type of person that does well with short explanations/small tutorials when I ask a question about programming. I DO NOT do well with video tutorials, as I'm an auditory learner, and mostly a tactile learner. I don't do well with visuals, and I barely get through drawing and 3D Modeling, although I have an excellent imagination that rarely is able to be displayed. So at most, if I need a visual, don't post a video...screen shots with decent explanations in and around it will help tremendously, if that's called for.

I DON'T like asking for the code to be handed to me on a platter. If I need code, I'll provide what I have, and would like pseudo code, or if it's short but needs to be working code, I'll ask for that, but again, I'll provide what I've tried to come up with.

Thanks for all the help, and the help I'm going to get. This site is FANTASTIC!
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#4 logicandchaos  Icon User is offline

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Re: Need help deciding on what to use...

Posted 22 August 2010 - 11:18 AM

you can use any language to make any program it depends on how you want to code, C++ is what most profession games are made with and it's structured and has objects, while C# is what lots of indy developers use and it's completely object orientated
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#5 MickeyIII  Icon User is offline

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Re: Need help deciding on what to use...

Posted 22 August 2010 - 05:05 PM

OK, thanks for that, logicandchaos...that helps a bunch!

As for the sound editor, I've decided to hold off on that until I learn C++ and C# with or without XNA. I like working from the ground up, in small sections.

Thanks for all the help. I will ask questions if I get stuck on anything I'm learning in this World Wide Web!

MickeyIII
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#6 SixOfEleven  Icon User is offline

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Re: Need help deciding on what to use...

Posted 23 August 2010 - 04:34 PM

I can't stress enough, it is all a matter of preference. There is no "perfect" tool for making games. All options have their benifits and drawbacks. I personally prefer C# with XNA over the other options available. It does make 3D a little harder because you must use shaders, because of the difference in the rendering pipeline of Windows and the Xbox, and there is no native support for animated models. C++, or plain C, will give the best over all preformace with C being the little bit better than C++. There are a number of libraries, SDKs, and APIs available for C/C++. DirectX 10 is for Vista and better. I'm not entirely sure but I believe DirectX 11 is only for Windows 7 but I can't guarantee that. Java is not to be over looked either. It has great potential for game programming. Check out Dogstopper's blog for game programming with Java. You can also look at Python and Pygames.

So, here's the deal. Find a language that you like and understand well. Don't say, I've got to learn language X to make games because programmer Y said so. That is pure bull. Point blank, you can make a game in any language. With modern processors the difference of speed between a native language and a managed language is negligible and the managed languages have been optimized to the point where some things may even run faster.
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#7 MickeyIII  Icon User is offline

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Re: Need help deciding on what to use...

Posted 24 August 2010 - 04:35 AM

O.K., I think you miss understood me...sorry.

I know that a language choice, I.D.E., Graphics API, Sound Composition Software, etc. are NOT set in stone. When it all comes down to it, I DON'T have a preference! I use what suits my specific task in Game Programming. I'm sorry I worded it like I wanted the best-of-the-best, sense there really isn't something like that. I was basically asking for recommendations, opinions, and personal preferences on C++ and C# with XNA. I've decided to use Code Block's C++, because it's free, and almost has the same features as VC++ 2008 Express Edition, plus, it has a usable resource editor, and if there are things I would like to have with it, all the Plugins I need are all on 1 (one) site (maybe a few other than their WIKI), and I can download them for free. I don't have to go Google what I want for VC++ 2008, because I suck at Googling let alone any type of manual searching, and things like resource editors are scattered all over, and I HATE, no I DETEST using Microsoft's website because I don't know how others feel, but it seems like a jumbled up mess to ME!

Again, all that above is my preference, and I'm sorry I went on a rant about Code Blocks, Google, and Microsoft's website, NOT that I hate Microsoft, just that I personally can't stand their website.

So sorry for the miss-communication, and thanks a bunch for your help!

Mickey III
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#8 Kilorn  Icon User is offline

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Re: Need help deciding on what to use...

Posted 24 August 2010 - 07:11 AM

Well, I'll have to agree with SixOfEleven's preference toward C# with the XNA framework. From what I've seen, I can accomplish everything that I've ever needed/wanted to do with XNA and while the 3D might be a little more difficult to deal with compared to C/C++, it has very well suited any needs I've had up to this point.

I'll also have to agree with you, Mickey, I also hate having to use Microsoft's website, but it seems as though it's a necessary evil at times.

This post has been edited by Kilorn: 24 August 2010 - 07:12 AM

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#9 SixOfEleven  Icon User is offline

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Re: Need help deciding on what to use...

Posted 26 August 2010 - 03:29 PM

Guess I did misinterpret what you were asking. That was my bad. It sounds like you've made the best choice for you. That is all we can do as programmers. Use the tools and languagesd we like best for the occassion. I've heard good things about Code Blocks. Good luck with it.
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#10 Mercurial  Icon User is offline

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Re: Need help deciding on what to use...

Posted 27 August 2010 - 03:15 AM

View PostSixOfEleven, on 23 August 2010 - 03:34 PM, said:

It does make 3D a little harder because you must use shaders, because of the difference in the rendering pipeline of Windows and the Xbox, and there is no native support for animated models. C++, or plain C, will give the best over all preformace with C being the little bit better than C++. There are a number of libraries, SDKs, and APIs available for C/C++.

Six, I've made a topic earlier about programming languages speeds, and I'm curious when did you(what have you been implementing at the time) actually start feeling the lack of speed in certain languages ?
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#11 SixOfEleven  Icon User is offline

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Re: Need help deciding on what to use...

Posted 27 August 2010 - 04:35 PM

I found it when Microsoft started toying with .NET in it's early stages so many years ago. I have a friend who works at a local univeristy and he introduced me to it, in the form of a Beta of Visual Studio.NET. I tried playing around with it, thought it was just an MS money grab. It seemed a little sluggish at the time, compared to native code. At the time I was working on database applications on really pathetic processors compared with today's computers, a Pentium II-233 with 128MB of RAM. That was even pre-Windows XP. As processing power and RAM increased I've noticed less and less differences between the two. On a relatively good machine I couldn't tell you if an application was running .NET or natively. Back then, I did notice things as sluggish. I could easily tell the difference between a native and a .NET application, and a Java application for that matter. I then stopped programming for about 4 or 5 years, medical reasons. Only really started to get back to it about two years ago, maybe a little longer. Technology has changed dramatically from when I began with managed code. We broke the 1GHz barrier, the 2GHz barrier, the 3GHz barrier, 64-bit processors, cheap RAM and HD space. I have on my key chain a 1MB RAM that cost near what 1 or 2GB RAM chips cost today. I paid more for my first 2.1GB HDD than you can get a TB HDD for today. Sorry, getting a little nostaligic and awestruck. :)
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#12 Mercurial  Icon User is offline

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Re: Need help deciding on what to use...

Posted 28 August 2010 - 01:38 AM

Yeah, I know exactly what you mean. At the time I got my Pentium I 166mhz 16mb RAM, it costed as much as a (good)car nowdays. Huhu nostalgic, I'm going there every day. Commodore 64 mmmmmmmm, Amiga 500 MMMMMMMMMm...

Ontopic: Where do you see disadvantages in XNA over C++? If it's not speed related, what is it then? I'd like to do gp in either eventually, since I started doing browser games recently in Java/Flash.
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#13 SixOfEleven  Icon User is offline

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Re: Need help deciding on what to use...

Posted 30 August 2010 - 09:01 AM

*edit*
Misread the part. These are advantages. Will get to disadvantages at another time.

What I've found with XNA/C# over C++ is that a lot of thought went into building XNA. Other APIs/SDKs/Frameworks that I've looked at in the past just never had the same robustness that I've found in XNA. It simplifies things and offers good abstraction. I think that is the key, the abstraction that it offers. With C++ you are much closer to the OS and you can get into a world of problems with pointers, memory leaks, etc. C# is a higher level language than C++ and you are protected from a lot of that. The same is true with Java though. You don't have to get down to the nitty gritty to make a good game with Java.

Higher level = Higher Abstraction = Easier = Small price to pay

BTW: For any who are interested. Take a look at the # symbol. It can be written like this.

++
++



It was chosen on purpose. When C++ was released it was an addition to C. Those at Microsoft thought of C# as an addition to C++. So it was C++++, or C#.
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#14 SixOfEleven  Icon User is offline

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Re: Need help deciding on what to use...

Posted 30 August 2010 - 09:12 AM

Some people complain that XNA is Microsoft specific, and it is. There is an attempt to port it to Linux using Mono but I'm not sure it will ever compare. There are a few other disadvantages, I've found. The one is working in 3D. It is harder than say C++. For one, to do anything you should use shaders. I've mentioned it before, it is because of the differences of the rendering pipeline on the Xbox 360 and Windows. The Xbox 360 doesn't have one step that Windows has and requires the use of shaders. You can use the BasicEffect class but you are much better to use shaders. The other one that I've come across is there is no support for animation in 3D. You end up having to do animation the hard way. The other problem is not everybody has access to the latest and greatest technology. I've been working as a technician recently and the majority of the machines I saw are still running Windows XP, some with well under 1GB of RAM. Not a big problem, I was making games on my XP machines before I got my new Winodws 7 computers. So, speed is still an issue here as well as the graphics card requirements. But, I guess, not all of those people are gamers. Gamers tend to have superior systems, though not always.
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