How to Program Computer Games
Serious gamers often dream of making their own computer games, but learning how to program games can seem like a daunting task. Chances are you won't be able to create the lush three-dimensional landscapes and complex worlds of modern commercial games, but you can make a basic computer game with a little bit of personal study and a few tutorials.
Things You'll Need
Learn a programming language. You can't program without first learning a language. There are a couple popular and easy to use formats for making computer games: Flash, Basic and Java. These aren't the most state-of-the-art programming languages, but they will give you a grasp of computer game logic and get you used to working with code.
Start with Basic. Basic is a mostly outmoded method of programming, dating back to the old command prompt days of MS-DOS, but it makes a great primer for learning the fundamentals of coding. Download QBasic (see Resources section below) and read some of the tutorials from Qbasic News to get started.
Download Flash. From the link below, you can get a free trial. This graphical interface is used for many interactive Web games and pages. It is a bit more complicated than Basic, but offers more possibilities.
Take some real courses. If you can grasp and enjoy these three basic modes of programming computer games, a career in computer game programming might be a good idea for you! More and more technological and trade schools have programs in computer game programming where you can earn a degree while learning advanced coding skills.
Tips & Warnings
- Strong math and logical reasoning skills are very helpful when learning how to program.
- The best way to learn is through practice. Follow tutorials and create a program on your own, even if you are just copying code line by line.
- Coding can be confusing and frustrating at first, but don't get discouraged. It's a little bit like learning math: once you start to get a feel for the logic, it will all start making sense.