martes, 30 de abril de 2013

Languages, technologies and other stumbling blocks

I have to admit that part of the reasons why I never got to finish anything is because I never was brave enough to target a concrete language, technology or SDK. I was often thinking to myself: "Oh, but if I choose this technology, I may lose flexibility, or maybe this technology won't be used in a couple of years and I will have learned something useless...". This kind of thinking is definitely a stumbling block for the creative process of making a game, as much as it is for the writer the decision on whether using a typewriter, a computer (and then deciding among different text processors), or pen and paper.

A small diagram of existing programming languages. Please... do not try them all before beginning

We have to make a decision, and be consistent and responsible with such decision. If we stick with certain language, let's make the most of it, and just lay aside other possibilities. The keyword here is 'focus'.

It is also the case that we tend to underestimate some languages just because they seem easier. For example, you may think that Flash is 'very easy' and therefore it is not worth your time; time that you could be learning assembly language and DirectX... Don't make that mistake! Specially if you're starting off, use the wonderful world of 'abstraction'. It's good to make an effort in understanding how things work under the cover, but you have to find a trade-off or otherwise you'll be looking at primitives to draw a pixel on the screen but you'll never move forward. You can always try to move one step down once you're familiarized with one high-level technology.

Therefore the first step is to make a choice. Which language/technology will you use? The decision should be based on what you're comfortable with or something that you really want to learn about.

Regarding me, I'll discuss my choice in the next post.

See you!! 

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