- Series: Charles River Media Game Development
- Paperback: 412 pages
- Publisher: Charles River Media; 1 edition (April 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1584502274
- ISBN-13: 978-1584502272
- Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 7.4 x 1.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 22 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #745,361 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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C++ For Game Programmers (Charles River Media Game Development) 1st Edition
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About the Author
Noel Llopis (Timonium, MD) is a software engineer at Day 1 Studios. He developed the technology for the game MechAssault and is now busy researching and implementing the technology for upcoming games. He holds a B.S. in Computer Engineering from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and an M.S. in Computer Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is also is a member of the Gamasutra editorial advisory board, and has written several articles on programming techniques in the Game Programming Gems series. He is a regular speaker at the Game Developers Conference.
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Top customer reviews
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Anyway, I devoured this book in a few days. It is written in the fasion of Scott Meyers indispensable "Effective C++" series. Noel explains what the compiler may or may not do for you. For instance, you may be surprised to learn that your inline functions may in fact not be inlined. Noel explains why and how to better your chances of getting your function truly inlined. If you are used to always writing copy constructors, Noel will show you when not to in game code. The breakdown of the virtual function table for an object with multiple inheritance was an eye opener. He also supplies a memory manager worth it's weight in gold! (How do you weigh code...?)
Also covered are the STL, Abstract Interfaces (great for implementing your graphics pipeline in BOTH Direct X and OpenGL), Plug In's (very cool coverage) as well as implementing your own Run Time Type Checker you can use in your Linux code as well (MicroSoft's RTTI bytes).
What Noel stresses throught the book is if your code is doing something a hundred thousand times each frame, you better know what it's really doing! The code snippets are perfect. They are not complete examples you can rip off and drop into your own code. But they do show you enough to make you say "Ah ha! Thats how its done." If you are a software engineer by profession, you will find yourself hurrying to work to see where you can improve that dog you are working on. I carry a book bag every day with 5 or 6 programming books that should be in every programmers library. This book is now one of them.
Finally, if you want a sample of Noels writing, run out and pick up a copy of the April 2004 issue of "Game Developer" magazine and check out his article on "Optimizing the Content Pipeline."
My overall reaction to this book is quite equivocal. On the one hand if it were another 'how to write great C++ programs' texts, it would be moderately interesting but not top drawer. However, on the other hand, the title suggests that it has a very specific games focus, so you expect game related material. Largely that just isn't there, hence my rating of the book.
To be absolutely candid, having read the other glowing reviews, I was astonished when I received the book to discover that it was largely not about game programming (as typified in texts from Dave Eberly, Andre Lemothe, and Alan Watt and Poliocarpo). I had a completely different set of expectations. Unfortunately they were not realised.
It doesn't talk about graphics libraries, or spatial collision algorithms, so don't expect that. When it says for Game Programmers, it means some of the problems associated with game programming in general. Example: if you have a particle system, and you need to create and destroy a lot of particle objects dynamically, you're going to fragment your memory heap, the book shows you how to create memory pools to deal with the problem. Also, plugins, serialization (saving your game), and some other fun bits towards the end of the book.
All in all its a good book...
to create games your understanding of C++, and software engineering need to be up to par, and this book will help get you there.
I have a collection of dozens of books on C++ and Game Programming, but its refreshing to finally find a work that explains relevant topics clearly without either going over my head or (to the other extreme) trying to sound too "hip" and coming across as amateurish.
If you have a working knowledge of C++ and are looking to take the next step in applying your knowledge toward game-related concepts, this book is for you. Don't expect to learn the specifics of AI or game physics, or the latest pixel shader technology, that is not what the book is about. It covers the fundamentals of using C++ in game programming, and it covers them very well.
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