Linux geek wanting to get into Mac games programming

supenguin
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Post: #1
I just found this site after reading about the OMG contests. Like many programmers, the whole reason I got into computers was I wanted to make games. Other than the initial learning in Basic and Pascal, all the programming I've done has either been command-line or web-based programs on Unix systems, mostly Linux.

So anyway, I read about the OMG contest and thought this is a great chance. I could learn how to program on the Mac, which is something I've wanted to do ever since I bought one. And at the same time I could learn how to program games, which is something I've wanted to do since I was 5 or so. This is especially true after reading Will Shipley's great article about why to develop on Macs.

I've never done programming on Macs, and never done any programming involving graphics, so I'm a bit lost on where to start. I've had "Programming in Objective-C" by Stephen Kochan recommened to me as well as "Cocoa Programming For Mac OS X 2nd Edition" by Aaron Hillegass.

Also, I haven't decided for sure, but I've been thinking it would be nice to have my games be cross platform between Mac and Linux, and just be an added bonus if it happens to work on Windows also. What's the best way to do that? SDL?

My goal: I'd like to learn this stuff by doing something fairly simple, like maybe a Tetris clone and then compete in next year's OMG contest.
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Luminary
Posts: 5,143
Joined: 2002.04
Post: #2
Yeah, SDL's probably a good place to start. GLUT's also a reasonable choice. You'll want to use OpenGL for graphics to get any speed. If you want to get up and running quickly, you can try http://onesadcookie.com/Tutorials for a quick intro to Xcode and GLUT, then move on to something like http://nehe.gamedev.net for slightly more advanced OpenGL stuff.
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supenguin
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Post: #3
Thanks for the beginning pointers. I wasn't looking to use OpenGL in particular, but I guess that's one of the best things to use when you want cross-platform graphics, right? I hope so because that was something I want to learn anyway.

Now what about sound? OpenGL and GLUT are just graphics so I'd need to use something for sound. Is there anything cross platform for sound besides SDL?
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Luminary
Posts: 5,143
Joined: 2002.04
Post: #4
OpenAL is the best sound API for the Mac, and far from shabby on Windows and Linux. It ships with 10.4 but you can build it yourself and include it with your app if you want 10.3 (or even 10.2.8) support.
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Moderator
Posts: 508
Joined: 2002.09
Post: #5
Is the OpenAL framework that comes in Tiger, compatible with Panther?

"When you dream, there are no rules..."
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Luminary
Posts: 5,143
Joined: 2002.04
Post: #6
I believe so, but I'm not 100% certain about that.
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Moderator
Posts: 450
Joined: 2003.08
Post: #7
Randomness: I prefer to use "enthusiast" rather than geek Wink

Welcome to the world of mac games programming!

Listen to keith (onesadcookie) he is a genius. Other than that, good luck! BTW: you might want to enter the uDevGames contest that may be hosted in the summer. Which is our "biggest" contest, 3 months long, and also most sponsors and such.

And of course, the most important thing, good luck!

Alex
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supenguin
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Post: #8
Thanks for all the pointers! I'd heard of OpenAL before but never really looked into it.

Evol: you're right. In my case, geek and enthusiast are pretty much the same thing.

I didn't realize there was a summer contest. I actually found out about this site reading about the OMG contest about a day before it started. I can be a fast learner, but not quite THAT fast!
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Moderator
Posts: 450
Joined: 2003.08
Post: #9
Don't worry. There are many ways to test your skills here Ninja. For one thing, people will host spontaneous contests sometime for 4-24 hour length. Also, if you can't wait for uDevGames in the spring, there is 21(maybe 27 days, I don't remember) Days Later contest in spring that is a themed contest that is always interesting.

Alex
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