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I want to make videogames, where do I start?

beelzenef profile image Elena G ・4 min read

Starting with a video game engine is perhaps the most complicated thing in the world. Perhaps you have thousands of ideas in your head that you want to put into practice and you don't decide on any. You may also lack programming knowledge, and want to learn to program too!

So let's try to put a little order on all the ideas and steps you can take if you need help. This post is oriented to Godot Engine, but most of the content is engine agnostic!

I don't know how to program, what do I do?

Godot Engine is a video game engine that allows you to create many types of projects, and some features do not require programming. But it is advisable to learn to create the functionalities we need for our projects, however specific.

There are many resources with which to learn to program, such as those that you will discover in this post.

Godot Engine allows you to create video games in Gdscript or in C#. In the first case, Gdscript is a language that is based on another programming language: Python. If you have knowledge of this, they will be very useful.

If you prefer C#, you have many tools and resources to learn with. It is the language to program videogames in Unity and create other kind of applications, so it is very popular and you will find resources easily.

You must learn that programming is language independent. Programming languages ​​are just the tool, the way to apply a certain operation to a machine.

You learn to program, and then program in one language or another, depending on preferences or needs.

The best thing you can do is learn to do pseudocode. The pseudocode is the way you make your programs regardless of language. This way you will learn to find solutions to certain problems, and then you can write that code in the language you need.

If you know how to write in a language like C# or Gdscript but don't know how to program, that knowledge is not directly applicable, it is not useful. You have to know how to use that language to apply solutions.

Start reading here:

Or if you want to put into practice what you already know:

Where do I keep learning?

There are many blogs to read and YouTube channels to watch to learn about the engine, here are a few:

If you have more technical questions, consult the official documentation!

I want to start creating games now!

Start by choosing the idea you want to start with. If you are starting in the development of video games, it is important that you start with small projects.

Why start small?

  • You learn how simple tasks are done
  • You easily recycle that knowledge of simple tasks
  • You have a result soon, which will help with your motivation
  • You don't fall in burnout or get tired in the process

So specify your idea as much as possible.

"I want to make a space shooter." "A science-fiction platform game". "A Restaurant City clone."

That idea will have to be divided into small tasks to be addressed little by little. A video game, like an application, consists of small pieces that together are the final product. You will have to have perseverance and patience.

If you have everything divided into tasks, it is easier to ask for help and also receive answers. People can help you more easily and effectively if you describe a small problem.

Learn to express your doubts

We are in many locations in the network, and there are always people willing to help and answer questions. But they can't do it if you don't make it easy. Write your question, read it, check if someone who does not know your situation or context would understand, rewrite if necessary and then publish.

Help them help you, it's simple!

I have problems with my code

Often, if not most of the time, our code has errors and we are not able to find them. It's very normal, and that's why we'll need to show it. The tendency is to take a capture of the code and share it, but it is a bad idea.

Why? Because if I have the solution, I will need to copy the code, modify it and show it corrected. With an image I can't do that.

So I will need your code to see it, study it, modify it or easily point out the problem. How can I do that? You can copy your code and share it with a link on the following websites:

As in the previous section: help them help you!

Say 'thanks'

One of the worst nightmares in development is to search a solution to a problem and see that nobody has the answer.

You can enter a forum and someone has the same question as you, the same problem. It seems that someone solved his problem, but simply ... decided not to thank the help received or share their knowledge of how they had solved it. Frustrating, right?

Solve your doubts and share what you discover

Godot Engine is a free video game engine, created in community. Get your spirit helping, spreading and sharing your knowledge.

That's it!

Do you think something is missing? Would you add any other useful advice or resource? Feel free to leave it in comments.

Dare to join a community like Godot's and start growing in knowledge as you create.

See you soon, thanks for reading!

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beelzenef profile

Elena G

@beelzenef

.NET developer | speaker | worldbuilding, storytelling | gamedev, futurism | she/they | #AzureHeroes | she/they | ⚾

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Keen on adding this resource as well for learning: youtu.be/K6eJ7zUsIVU and generalistprogrammer.com ?