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Game Programming All in One Paperback – October 23, 2006

ISBN-13: 978-1598632897 ISBN-10: 1598632892 Edition: 3rd

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Part One: Introduction To Cross-Platform Programming Chapter 1: Demystifying Game Development Chapter 2: Getting Started with Dev-C++ and Allegro Chapter 3: Basic 2D Graphics Programming with Allegro Chapter 4: Writing Your First Allegro Game Chapter 5: Programming The Keyboard, Mouse, and Joystick Part Two: 2D Game Design and Programming Chapter 6: Introduction To Game Design Chapter 7: Basic Bitmap Handling and Blitting Chapter 8: Basic Sprite Programming: Drawing Scaled, Flipped, Rotated, Pivoted, and Translucent Sprites Chapter 9: Advanced Sprite Programming: Compiled Sprites, Collision Detection, and Animation Chapter 10: Timers, Interrupt Handlers, and Multi-threading Chapter 11: Programming Tile-Based Scrolling Backgrounds Using MappyAL Chapter 12: Creating A Game World: Editing Tiles and Levels Chapter 13: Creating a Tile-Based Scrolling Arcade Game Part Three: Taking It To The Next Level Chapter 14: Mastering The Audible Realm: Allegro"s Sound Support Chapter 15: Using Data Files To Store Game Resources Chapter 16: Multiplayer Programming Using TCP/IP Sockets Chapter 17: Enhancing Gameplay with Artificial Intelligence Chapter 18: Basic 3D Graphics Programming Using AllegroGL Chapter 19: Publishing Your Game Part Four: Appendices Appendix A: Useful Tables Appendix B: Numbering Systems: Binary and Hexadecimal Appendix C: Recommended Books and Web Sites

From the Author

Source code for the projects in this book may be downloaded from these book resource locations:
  • jharbour.com/forum (must create a free account first)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 832 pages
  • Publisher: Cengage Learning PTR; 3 edition (October 23, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1598632892
  • ISBN-13: 978-1598632897
  • Product Dimensions: 2 x 7.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #997,021 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jon Harbour is a software developer with a master's in information systems. He taught game development as a full-time associate professor for five years and has worked on software in diverse fields, from healthcare to aerospace. He enjoys reading, tinkering with cars, and playing video games.

Professionally, he flip-flops between software developer and writer. They occasionally merge and then drift apart. He has gone full time as a writer from time to time. (Note: It's hard to earn a living as a writer! Ask Edgar Allan Poe...). Having all but given up on consoles, he enjoys firing up a good PC game at the end of the day.

He can be reached at jharbour.com.

Customer Reviews

It is very easy to read and follow.
L. Wong
On Windows 7 I got the library to install no problems (I did use an outside tutorial provided to me plus an IDE).
dancks
This is a excellent book on game programming.
Fear the Tigger

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By G B on January 13, 2008
Format: Paperback
I tend to shy away from game programming books with the phrase "All in One." And not without good reason. Most of them are utter garbage. They simply try to do too much. Take the 1st edition of GPAIO for example--it was just awful. It had diagrams on the wrong page, tons of errors, etc. And it wastes way too much time going through the technical stuff. Very little on game programming.

Not so with this book.

While there is some technical stuff, the author utilizes it almost instantaneously to form a simple tank game along the way. Towards the end of the book, he covers horizontal scrolling (i.e., Super Mario Bros.) and vertical scrolling (i.e., 1942). While neither example is a complete game, both really explain the mechanics well enough that making a game of either type should be fairly easy.

I was a bit reluctant to buy the book because it uses Allegro, rather than the more mainstream options of DirectX and OpenGL. But I really think Allegro was a great choice. It allows him to focus on the meaty stuff, you know, actual game programming stuff. I have way too many books that waste upwards of 150 pages on setting up a window with DirectX.

My only criticism is that the book is more for hobbyists than professionals, but then again I have never seen nor heard of any such book. Anyone who wants to program games, albeit simple games should definitely check this book out.

As for the reviewer who gave GPAIO one star, I'm really doubtful that s/he is serious. But if so, my advice to you is this: If you can't get Allegro up and running, then you shouldn't be programming games. It's that simple. Really. It's not any harder or easier to set up than DX, OpenGL or even SDL.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Heroico on November 19, 2007
Format: Paperback
This book is intended for the ABSOLUTE BEGINNER. It assumes the reader has a very basic knowledge of C, and understands the basics of pointers, arrays and structs. No experience with other multimedia library/GUI toolkit/etc required, although it helps.

From that point on, it will get you up and running really fast; in quite a few chapters this book will cover simple 2D game programming, teaching all the basics neededed for programming more complex games. Trough the use of Allegro library, the topics of handling input (keyboard, mice, joystick) and output (sound, graphics, sprites) are covered effectively.

The later chapters, however, did not appeal to me at all; they deal with horizontal scrolling (classic mario-like games) and vertical scrolling (1942-like shoot'em up's), AI, multithreading... which is very cool stuff, but I don't think the approach chosen is very effective.

It is read REALLY fast however, with very big fonts, and clear and neat writing. It dissapointed me a bit because although it seemed very nicely edited, one of the examples was misplaced.

If you plan to work under linux, the code will work (most of the time), but compiling can become somewhat cumbersome. Under windows, it works fine.

To wrap up, I quite liked what the author says about gaming and game design in general, and teaches very effectively what he intends, having the "All In One" covered; but examples are overall too simplistic or superficial.

I'm rating four out of five because I expect a book on the subject to be a little more high-end; however, if you are new to programming in general, this book will prove quite helpful. And, Allegro can take you really far (it even has the bonus of being open source!).

P.S.: as a side note, reading other reviews, the second edition looks better than third.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By L. Wong on February 4, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was a Computer Science major in college, and wanted to get into game programming. Never did it before, and had a lot of difficulty just being able to create a programming environment so that I could do basic C graphics programming.

Well, I found this book, and wrote a complete version of Tetris from scratch, and then a complete version of Pac-Man, which includes all the original ghost algorithm logic. I've also written numerous other graphics programs and games (Arkanoid, asteroids, etc) using it and all the tools included with the book.

It is very easy to read and follow. Great examples. All the sample code works. It gives you all the basic skills to program anything to do with 2D graphics. The Allegro toolset is quite powerful.

Anyway, I highly recommend it as a novice.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Karl Heidtbrink on May 22, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book has all of the concepts needed to understand what the computer is doing, and all of the components you need for a successful video game, both on the conceptual sense and implementation sense. The problem with trying to use this book now is that you need a legacy system to utilize the graphical library. The new version of the library is more confusing than the books, and the old library was designed for Windows XP and earlier.

I would suggest modern books if you want to learn specific libraries that will help you, but this book will help if you need or want more conceptual understanding.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Lost Dragon on July 20, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
There's a new version of Allegro coming out (5.x series already in Beta) that's going to make this book somewhat obsolete.

The author's forums are okay. There is a good section on how to get your IDE and compiler setup, but because the book is old it doesn't cover the latest tools or operating systems.

If you still want to buy then I'd recommend getting the book used and downloading the free tools yourself.

It's not really the book's fault that it is outdated, though, so for what it is - it's a good book. Check out the author's other (newer) listings first.
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