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Learning Cocos2D: A Hands-On Guide to Building iOS Games with Cocos2D, Box2D, and Chipmunk Paperback – July 17, 2011
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“If you’re looking to create an iPhone or iPad game, Learning Cocos2D should be the first book on your shopping list. Rod and Ray do a phenomenal job of taking you through the entire process from concept to app, clearly explaining both how to do each step as well as why you’re dong it.”
–Jeff LaMarche, Principal, MartianCraft, LLC, and coauthor of Beginning iPhone Development (Apress, 2009)
“This book provides an excellent introduction to iOS 2D game development. Beyond that, the book also provides one of the best introductions to Box2D available. I am truly impressed with the detail and depth of Box2D coverage.”
–Erin Catto, creator of Box2D
“Warning: reading this book will make you need to write a game! Learning Cocos2D is a great fast-forward into writing the next hit game for iOS–definitely a must for the aspiring indie iOS game developer (regardless of experience level)! Thanks, Rod and Ray, for letting me skip the learning curve; you’ve really saved my bacon!”
–Eric Hayes, Principle Engineer, Brewmium LLC (and Indie iOS Developer)
“Learning Cocos2D is an outstanding read, and I highly recommend it to any iOS developer wanting to get into game development with Cocos2D. This book gave me the knowledge and confidence I needed to write an iOS game without having to be a math and OpenGL whiz.”
–Kirby Turner, White Peak Software, Inc.
“Learning Cocos2D is both an entertaining and informative book; it covers everything you need to know about creating games using Cocos2D.”
–Fahim Farook, RookSoft (rooksoft.co.nz)
“This is the premiere book on Cocos2D! After reading this book you will have a firm grasp of the framework, and you will be able to create a few different types of games. Rod and Ray get you quickly up to speed with the basics in the first group of chapters. The later chapters cover the more advanced features, such as parallax scrolling, CocosDenshion, Box2D, Chipmunk, particle systems, and Apple Game Center. The authors’ writing style is descriptive, concise, and fun to read. This book is a must have!”
–Nick Waynik, iOS Developer
About the Author
Rod Strougo is the founder and lead developer of the studio Prop Group at www.prop.gr. Rod’s journey in physics and games started way back with an Apple ][, writing games in Basic. From the early passion in games, Rod’s career moved to enterprise software development, spending 10 years writing software for IBM and recently for a large telecom company. These days Rod enjoys helping others get started on their paths to making games. Originally from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Rod lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with his wife and sons.
Ray Wenderlich is an iPhone developer and gamer and the founder of Razeware, LLC. Ray is passionate about both making apps and teaching others the techniques to make them. He has written a bunch of tutorials about iOS development, available at www.raywenderlich.com.
Top customer reviews
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The bad: poorly written, the authors makes reference of code that does not exist and tells the reader to add to the non-existent .m files, does not have clear concise directions throughout the book. The Helloworld project tells the reader to get a .png file but does not tell the reader where it is.
Bottom line: Do not buy. The authors need to rewrite, update, and fix several mistakes.
Also if you're not comfortable using terminal don't use cocos2d.
I don't have difficulties following the explanations or the examples in the book when they work. I'm currently on chapter 3 of the book, so this is just my current impression and experiences. I will update once I finish the book, or at least a large part of it. The book is written for cocos2d version 0.99.5 and I am using version 2.0 (the lastest stable) so I expected it to be different, and I expected the code example to be a little outdated.
First and foremost, the explanations in the book are very clear. For a newbie game developer like myself I find the explanations really helped me fill in the gap in my knowledge on how games work. The example code for the most part work out as is. And I like very much how all the graphics are included from the author's site (which I think moved, but I was able to find it without too much difficulty), so I don't need to waste time making my own graphics or trying to find images just to use with the example code.
As I said, it's not written for the 2.0 cocos2d version, so some code may have to be changed or replaced for the example to work properly. With my limited experience using the cocos2d framework and the explanation in the book, I was able to modify the code to work properly so far.
An example of the code not working out of the box is in chapter 2, where you add the gameplay layer and the background layer to the gamescene. The example have you add the layers in the init() method, however, I think in the new framework, the orientation of the device is not set up yet, so the background image and the viking sprite appears a little off, since the dimension of the device is 768x1024 (portrait mode) instead of 1024x768 (landscape mode). But once I moved the code to the onEnter method, the orientation is properly set then, and the sprites loaded in the properly place.
Also, sneakyinput library that was used didn't work for me, so I used zJoystick instead and hopefully later in the book I won't encounter any problems using it in the example. It would have been nice if the author showed how to create your own joystick from scratch instead, though it might add 1 or two more chapters to the book. I do feel like it's an important aspect of game development, as the libraries for joystick input are over 2 years old without any updates, and there doesn't seem to be any freely available libraries.
It's a great book to get started in cocos2d game programming, and hopefully the author will have an update soon.
First, let me say I totally appreciate what you 2 authors do for the iPhone community. I see your stuff a lot when digging around, and usually read Ray's stuff then shrug it off 'cause I'm native iOS moreso, but will definitely follow your blog soon enough for Cocos2d.
That said, I'm tutoring someone using your book, and he's running into SO MANY ISSUES! Half of them are the fact he wasn't experienced in C, but the other half is the book.
Example 1: Installing Cocos2d says to create a folder, but doesn't say what to do with it. It doesn't even specify to download and put cocos2d into that folder. The book has no linking between those 2 ideas, and safari doesn't automatically download things into a new folder. The website's a bit easier in that case.
Example 2: Chapter 2 states to add certain folders to Texture Packer. Problem is you have 3 of them. Any iOS Developer would already know that the system automatically picks which one... but your book doesn't state which one (it's for beginners), then after that page, says that 2 of them are optional, so you have to infer that you want the iPad one. The very next section states that they are not optional... what???
Example 3: The section stating that they are optional is directly after the Zwoptex instructions which is not delimited by a new header. He skipped the instructions assuming it had to do with Zwoptex. I personally didn't, 'cause I used the numbers as a delimiter, but your book specifically has all sections broken off by bold headings. It needs a technical editor to ensure that (thus, 2nd ed)
Example 4: Not the book's fault, but Texture Packer caught on, and now exporting (without a mark) is paid. Gotta warn the readers.
Example 5: Texture packer doesn't have an "add images" option after you "add folders", but the book says to check it after adding a folder to it.
Frequently things are explained as to when/where after-the-fact. Much of the instructions don't line up with the tools. Eg: "Add files" doesn't exist as an option on iOS 4, so we use "add existing files". But iOS 5 or newer does have that option. Perhaps it would be good to have both? Once again, this is mostly an issue because it's targeting beginners. I can figure it out, but I take so much for granted 'cause I can code.
The order of using the atlas is awkward. You prep it, then take a whole chapter to use something else, then come back to it. Is that how you teach beginners?
Now, a special note to all beginners, if you see () after a name of something, it means it's a function. But objective C's functions don't have () the same way C functions do. My roommate was confused because he didn't know what to type in the initWith() thingy, but essentially just type the code you see. That's something someone who's done C would/should know but a newbie wouldn't.
I get to indirectly read your book through this, and while yes, someone like me can figure it out - it should not be this difficult if it's geared towards newer people. But the errors are mostly placement and technical, the source code works great and the explanations, when in spots that make good sense, work.
Speaking of placement, the CCSpriteBatch note in the beginning should be much shorter, if even there... as its reference (once again) to the Retina vs. iPad images tells you what to/not to do, but it's right after the section with the unclear heading (Example 3 above).
I'm sorry I haven't gotten past too much of your book, but every 30 minutes my pupil runs into a blocker, and half of them aren't your fault, the other half is simply the stuff programmers take for granted, so I can't say I would do it differently. I just really want you guys to get a 2nd edition soon.
I'll even offer my roommate to take notes.
For anyone into this book who would like the author's assistance, please seek the official extra information by googling Learning Cocos2d errata.
I am trying to give an honest critique, I do not dislike the book, but it has bugs that block us! Though I have not seen the blockers the negative reviews gave, I think they just don't know how to program well. I do, but even then... your book follows a few rules of technical writing, but needs to follow a few more.
Most recent customer reviews
At the first glance it detailed installation and review of coco2d which was good...Read more