Really discouraged as a wannabe game programmer...

idNut

Diamond Member
Jun 9, 2002
3,219
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I can't do any of the programs I'm assigned at my college class and I just start lose it when I don't understand something that I think I should. I'm really hard on myself if I can't do anything I want to do and programming is absolutely no exception. I have no help on the programs but these boards and I'm afraid they aren't good or fast enough for me. I've emailed the instructor far too many times and so I feel I'm on my own. My "friends" don't know what they're talking about and I'm really getting frustrated with this. As far as games, my hope in them are shattered. If I can't even do this little basic C++ program, how in the hell will I ever be able to make a game?
 

gopunk

Lifer
Jul 7, 2001
29,239
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mm, how long have you been stuck? it's not unusual to get stuck... sometimes you just have to grind away until you find the problem (or understand the concept i guess)
 

Rallispec

Lifer
Jul 26, 2001
12,373
3
81
if it makes you feel anybetter.. i suck at programming too.


how long have you been doing programming? it really takes a while to get good at it.
 

singh

Golden Member
Jul 5, 2001
1,449
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Cheer up mate! :) Find yourself some friends who are decent programmers - you'll be better in no time.
 

notfred

Lifer
Feb 12, 2001
38,241
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Do you enjoy it and suck at it, or do jsut generally hate it? If you jsut hate it, maybe you should pick another field of study.
 

idNut

Diamond Member
Jun 9, 2002
3,219
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Well I started using Borland (Borhog) C++ August 2001 and I've been using Visual C++ since March and I'm not all that good with Object Oriented programming and it's really bothering me. I do know that a lot of practice would help but I either make stuff too hard or too easy and don't get any confidence or iron clad experience. I enjoy it when I get it but when I don't I just wanna scream "Fu**" so loud.
 

pac1085

Diamond Member
Jun 27, 2000
3,456
0
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Programming takes alot of time and paitence. I had the same problem when I first started. I was always thinking way too hard about how to get something to work...once I calmed down and thought it out slowly it would all make sense... There are alot of on-line forums for programming and IRC, so I got alot of help there when I needed it. Good luck!
 

AmigaMan

Diamond Member
Oct 12, 1999
3,644
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you also can't beat getting to know your peers in class. A lot of times they saved my butt and I returned the favor as well. Plus you'll make new friends. Just ask the guy or gal sitting next you if they're having a problem with such and such project and most times they'll help you out.
 

Ameesh

Lifer
Apr 3, 2001
23,686
0
0
Games are quite difficult to code, so if you are struggling with basic programs you will have a serious problem doing game design. some people just dont have the head for it. i suggest moving on if you arent progressing.
 

denali

Golden Member
Oct 10, 1999
1,122
0
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What type of programs are you trying to write? Maybe you should try and do some programming without using the IDE. Just use your favorite text editor, and a makefile. Don't use one fo those programming in 24 hours or a week book they are a waste of money, and don't teach you a thing.
 

bunker

Lifer
Apr 23, 2001
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Originally posted by: Cattlegod
oo is a pain to learn.
Not if it's the first thing you learn. My first language was java....going over to VB was a little weird for me.

id:

There are many other forums to go to for programming help, just type "C++ help" in any search engine. No offense to fellow ATer's, but this is the last place I go to for help ;).

 

DaveSimmons

Elite Member
Aug 12, 2001
40,730
670
126
Something that might help is to get another book or two to go with your class text, so if you're having trouble with the textbook's explanation of something you have more sources and different example code. If you do searches in the software forum for "learn c++" and "c++ books" you'll find a bunch of suggestions. Something else I do when going to a bookstore is to have in mind one or two questions I want answered / answered better, and look at how each book covers those questions.

Also, like you say: practice. If you work through the chapter problems in a "learn C++" book or two you'd have a much stronger grasp of the language and programming in general.
 

Ameesh

Lifer
Apr 3, 2001
23,686
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Originally posted by: bunker
Originally posted by: Cattlegod
oo is a pain to learn.
Not if it's the first thing you learn. My first language was java....going over to VB was a little weird for me.

id:

There are many other forums to go to for programming help, just type "C++ help" in any search engine. No offense to fellow ATer's, but this is the last place I go to for help ;).

im offended!
 

WarCon

Diamond Member
Feb 27, 2001
3,920
0
0
I haven't programmed for years. I don't think I was bad at it, but it was bad for me. I would get in a zone and not leave it for12-14 hrs and if I was interrupted I would almost bite someones head off. Somewhere along the line, I decided that programming wasn't my cup of tea.
 

idNut

Diamond Member
Jun 9, 2002
3,219
0
0
I would get in a zone and not leave it for12-14 hrs and if I was interrupted I would almost bite someones head off.
Yes, I'm the exact same way. If I'm stressed and can't get it I am just annoyed by the smallest things like my dog's snoring. I wack him in the head and tell him to go outside. I don't think it's healthy for me to be a programmer but drawing you can't really learn like you can with programming. Level designing takes a lot of imagination and business contains zero fun. I have zilch ideas for a story only the overall concept and orders inside to boss people around and tell them "I want this like this and that like that". I'd like to "design" the game but I heard there is no such job for directors like me. I dunno, I appreciate the replies though, thanks.
 

geoff2k

Golden Member
Sep 2, 2000
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Yes, I'm the exact same way. If I'm stressed and can't get it I am just annoyed by the smallest things like my dog's snoring. I wack him in the head and tell him to go outside. I don't think it's healthy for me to be a programmer but drawing you can't really learn like you can with programming. Level designing takes a lot of imagination and business contains zero fun. I have zilch ideas for a story only the overall concept and orders inside to boss people around and tell them "I want this like this and that like that". I'd like to "design" the game but I heard there is no such job for directors like me. I dunno, I appreciate the replies though, thanks.
Have you considered starting off in the testing department? Lots of folks start off in testing and move up into programming (or other areas of game development) -- an internship at a game firm would give you a first hand look at what's required to put a game together. Check out porkfry's articles on what it is like to test games for a living.
 

Mucman

Diamond Member
Oct 10, 1999
7,246
1
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idNut - The key question is... Do you enjoy programming? Even if you create the tiniest of application or game, did you enjoy doing it? Or are you just pissed that it is not Quake? If you don't enjoy it then I wouldn't bother persuing it. Franky, I found writing a PERL script that solves the "3 doors problem" very fun and rewarding. I've also made a little OpenGL game where all it is is a triangle that you can fly around the screen. I probably spent days just playing around with the physics of the movement for a 1 polygon game! It was a blast! Even with the amount of fun I have programming I am still hesitent to get into hardcore game programming. Along with the fun is a lot of stress, and time commitment. If you want some help check out places like GameDev and Flipcode. I usally got frustrated going there though, because some of those people do some remarkable stuff in a short amount of time...

Anyways, that's my 2 bits.
 

singh

Golden Member
Jul 5, 2001
1,449
0
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Originally posted by: Ameesh
Originally posted by: MaxDepth
White board (also known as liquid-chalk board), not a notebook or scraps of paper, but a white board.

It makes programming, web development life a whole lot easier when you can see the problem diagrammed out on a white board.

i have two in my office at work and like 4 at home. in college we had one nailed to the wall that covered the entire wall.


LOL. I have two at Home/Office too :)
 

idNut

Diamond Member
Jun 9, 2002
3,219
0
0
idNut - The key question is... Do you enjoy programming? Even if you create the tiniest of application or game, did you enjoy doing it? Or are you just pissed that it is not Quake?

I hate programming. It lowers my confidence when I can't get a program to work and it makes me feel just plain stupid. I have a general understanding of programming which is good but otherwise it does more bad than good. I guess I am pissed that it isn't Quake III or Doom III. I'm just so eager to be up there making it with the pros that I'm completely ignoring the journey. (John Carmack was a lot like this I believe)I don't know what else to do for a game. Art I love. I love art. I love the boxes for the games, the creatures, the textures, everything about art I love. Heh. I keep all my boxes just because they're pretty to look at but the only thing that prevents me from going into art for games is I suck at making it. Sure I have good taste but that does me nothing in the game industry.

I've been told a lot of times that there are enough artists that can draw really good in the gaming industry so I don't know if that'd be worth it to even put all my marbles into it. I'm done with programming after the 6th so I'll just concentrate on drawing and modeling characters afterwards but it's hard to just say "I'm going to make an awesome looking monster" when I have nothing to work with like a script or story. 2D art is okay but I don't know if I could draw bricks and stuff like that. Now does 2D mean just textures or is that also 3D character design? Like, 3D artists, are they the ones that take what 2D artists draw or paint and put them into the computer? Kind of strange question but I'm not clear on it.

Thanks for the replies, nothing like other gamers trying to cheer me up. :)

Got an email from John Carmack's wife for a T-Shirt order, it completely brought me out of my depression. :)


 

Ameesh

Lifer
Apr 3, 2001
23,686
0
0
Originally posted by: idNut
idNut - The key question is... Do you enjoy programming? Even if you create the tiniest of application or game, did you enjoy doing it? Or are you just pissed that it is not Quake?

I hate programming. It lowers my confidence when I can't get a program to work and it makes me feel just plain stupid. I have a general understanding of programming which is good but otherwise it does more bad than good. I guess I am pissed that it isn't Quake III or Doom III. I'm just so eager to be up there making it with the pros that I'm completely ignoring the journey. (John Carmack was a lot like this I believe)I don't know what else to do for a game. Art I love. I love art. I love the boxes for the games, the creatures, the textures, everything about art I love. Heh. I keep all my boxes just because they're pretty to look at but the only thing that prevents me from going into art for games is I suck at making it. Sure I have good taste but that does me nothing in the game industry.

I've been told a lot of times that there are enough artists that can draw really good in the gaming industry so I don't know if that'd be worth it to even put all my marbles into it. I'm done with programming after the 6th so I'll just concentrate on drawing and modeling characters afterwards but it's hard to just say "I'm going to make an awesome looking monster" when I have nothing to work with like a script or story. 2D art is okay but I don't know if I could draw bricks and stuff like that. Now does 2D mean just textures or is that also 3D character design? Like, 3D artists, are they the ones that take what 2D artists draw or paint and put them into the computer? Kind of strange question but I'm not clear on it.

Thanks for the replies, nothing like other gamers trying to cheer me up. :)

Got an email from John Carmack's wife for a T-Shirt order, it completely brought me out of my depression. :)

if you suck at art and programming i dont think there is a technical position in the games industry for you. maybe you could do marketing or project management.

 

idNut

Diamond Member
Jun 9, 2002
3,219
0
0
Well I don't SUCK but I haven't really sat down and gave it a whirl for a while. I'm taking more art classes to get me back in my vibe for art. I have numerous ideas but no game to apply them to. I had three friends that wanted to be game programmers with me. The one, Nathan, didn't take the summer course I took with my other friend and now he is pretty far behind. He only knows basic C roughly. Steve totally ditched me because he just found out having a depressed friend was something he couldn't handle so we no longer talk. The last one, Brad, doesn't care about anything except having fun and neglecting work. He'd like to make a game but he doesn't know enough either to even draw a line or a circle on a computer and we don't talk anymore. So I'm pretty stuck.

I bought a DirectX book when I thought I was still going to be a programmer but I found that it was even harder than what I was learning now in C++. I've always been an artist since I can remember so I think I should stick with it. Unfortunately I live in western PA and there are zero game companies around here in the Pittsburgh area. I'm sure there are places around that hire artists but I doubt I'll be ready for that without a degree in some sort. Speaking of which, would game artists need a degree? Also, how much do they get paid? I know these are all questions for the FAQ of game artists but I don't know where one would be.

So I'm 16 almost 17 and a die-hard gamer with a passion to create games and art for games...I don't think I have a chance.