Since we’re finally getting in to summer, it’s a good time to think of some summer projects to keep the brain going. If you’ve thought about becoming a programmer, the summer is a great time to start tinkering and learning, so you can use those skills in next year’s OGPC, or even in some of the several robotics competitions!
This is the first part in a series of posts for the summer, which should help get anyone off the ground in the programming world. If you’re completely new to programming, check out that last link in the “Book-style sites” section, and also some of the games at the end. Also, the videos in here are great for motivation!
- MIT OpenCourseWare’s Introduction to Computer Science and Programming—one of the most useful links here. Watch the lecture videos, do the assignments, try the exams. At your own pace.
- “Maths for (Games) Programmers”—very dense, but very useful
- Wikibook called “Video Game Design”
- Link to “The Game Maker’s Apprentice” website—the book is not free but there are some chapter previews on the site
- Interesting but very mathy article called “Sin & Cos: The Programmer’s Pals!”
- A list of free game programming books
- TED talk called “Ali Carr-Chellman: Gaming to re-engage boys in learning”
- TED talk called “Gaming can make a better world”
Websites, Blogs, etc.
- AI depot—useful for AI programming, but kind of advanced
- The Grand List of Console RPG Clichés—not programming, but interesting and funny for a game programmer as a ‘what to avoid’
- ASGamer—good flash-programming resource for someone who already has a question
- Stack Overflow—very useful resource for submitting unexplained programming errors, to find an explanation.
- List of flash game engines—a lot of them are free, and a lot of them are not
- Funny and interesting article called “Become a Video Game Programmer in Ten Minutes”
- Cells—a cool game which teaches programming—code your swarm and pit it against other code. Requires pygame.
- AI Wars—very useful for learning to program by playing a game, but you’ll probably want to know how to program already
- Terrarium—you can code animals in .NET and release them into a worldwide ‘ecosystem’
- Alice—not exactly a game, but useful for learning the basics of object-oriented programming
- Light-Bot—learn the basics of programming by programming the robot to navigate each level
- Robocode—program your tank to survive for as long as possible
- DroidBattles—design a ship and program its AI. Uses a language similar to assembler, so it’s difficult. Good for someone who really wants a challenge.