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Foundation Game Design with HTML5 and JavaScript Paperback – November 23, 2012

4.4 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Rex van der Spuy is a video game designer and writer. He s written Foundation Game Design with Flash, Advanced Game Design with Flash and Foundation Game Design with AS3.0. Rex has designed games and done interactive interface programming Agency Interactive (Dallas), Scottish Power (Edinburgh), DC Interact (London), Draught Associates (London), and the Bank of Montreal (Canada). He also builds game engines and interactive interfaces for museum installations for PixelProject (Cape Town). In addition, he created and taught advanced courses in game design for the Canadian School of India (Bangalore, India). When not writing about games, making them, or playing them, he amuses himself by building experimental, autonomous, self-aware, multi-cellular parallel universes out of shoe boxes, scotch tape, spare milk bottle caps and bits of string . He claims, that this is a lot more entertaining than you might think, but we re skeptical.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 752 pages
  • Publisher: Apress; 2012 edition (November 22, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1430247169
  • ISBN-13: 978-1430247166
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 1.7 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #811,012 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a book on making games for web browers from Rex van der Spuy, who is well-known for his books on Flash game programming. The source code is available at the Apress site, and I recommend downloading it if you are considering buying this book. What you will find is that he able to build an impressive set of games, almost matching his work in the Flash environment.
The text of the book is clear and concise, as we have come to expect from van der Spuy. He doesn't waste time bemoaning the weakness of the JavaScript language or complaining about the deficiencies of the HTML5 platform. He just gets to work and shows you how to make your game work in this environment.
As an experienced game programmer, I found this book very helpful in porting my games to the HTML5 platform, better than the other books I've read. If you are trying to learn game programming, van der Spuy is a great teacher, but you probably would be better served learning game programming in Flash before tackling HTML5.
Either way, this book is well worth buying. I initially bought the Kindle edition, and I found it so useful that I bought the print edition as well.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I purchased this book early this year but have not had a great deal of time to get through it due to school. Now that I've been in the middle of winter break and finally have had a chance to sit down with it... I honestly feel this has been the best purchase I have made since I've been a developer.

A few reviews here have mentioned an abundance of code errors and editorial problems, or issues with their copy of the book but in my experience - this just isn't so. I am halfway through this book and have only found three very insignificant errors so far so if you somehow end up with a bad copy, just contact the publisher or return it for another copy... Keep in mind is is also available through Safari for free if your a student, or you may purchase the eBook edition through Apress.

I've found the Author to explain things very well, the projects throughout the book are incremented in difficulty just perfectly and he keeps things very entertaining. If your not a gamer you may not fully appreciate this book, but then again what are you doing trying to program games then? While you may not end up making the next big console FPS, you will get a handle on basic programming concepts and feel a lot more confident using JavaScript.

I think it is important to understand this book is kind of focused on a niche market, this isn't designed to make you great with graphics, web development, or programming in general. It is purely focused upon using JavaScript to build games... but if you know a thing or two about game development, the logic that is used is fairly difficult and can be applied in other areas once you get a handle on things.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought the book looking for a fun way to learn more JavaScript for web design (as opposed to making games). This book is actually better than a lot of books out there specifically written to teach web design. It also has been a lot of fun to learn concepts and then to practice these concepts by writing games. I did not find any major errors in my edition of the book, so the issues alluded to in a few other reviews have apparently been corrected. This book makes learning JavaScript fun and the author strikes a good balance between too much explanation and not enough with regard to the concepts that are addressed in the book. I had trouble putting this book down. The book is also arranged in a logical manner. It begins with a review of basic HTML and CSS, and then moves on to the basics of JavaScript. By chapter 3, you are already creating games. I wish I would have found this book sooner as I have read a lot of really boring and poorly organized books on website design.
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Format: Paperback
I read this book as sort of a refresher of stuff I had learned programming in Actionscript, but it really taught me so much more. The author gives you a quick run through HTML, CSS, and some Javascript basics, which was actually better than some dedicated books on those subjects because it was succinct. In fact, I recommended it to a friend that wanted to learn HTML and they loved it. He then shows you how to manipulate DOM elements and make some simple games that way, before taking you into the world of Object Oriented Javascript and HTML Canvas games. There were very few typos, despite what someone else mentioned, and the ones that were there were usually in a code comment or some other harmless text. In fact, a few times where I thought there was a typo, the problem was that I hadn't fully grasped it. And all the code examples worked perfectly, so whenever there was doubt, you could always refer to them. And those code samples were invaluable for me. So much to glean in the way of organizing your code as well as building games.

I knocked it down one star because the part about bouncing a ball off another ball wasn't very well explained, and I was really looking forward to that part. I know that it's a deep topic but his suggestion of Googling "vectors" wasn't very helpful for me as I only found more complicated math "stuff" by MIT folks and others far more math-inclined than I am. I must have read that chapter a hundred times but his short, single-sentence explanation of each step didn't help me visualize what I was doing at all, so in the end I just decided to blindly use the code block he provides when the situation comes up.
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