Game Programming Algorithms and Techniques: A Platform-Agnostic Approach Paperback – 19 Dec 2013
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About the Author
Sanjay Madhav is a lecturer at the University of Southern California, where he teaches several courses about and related to video game programming. Prior to joining USC full time, he worked as a programmer at several video game developers, including Electronic Arts, Neversoft, and Pandemic Studios. Although he has experience programming a wide range of systems, his primary interest is in gameplay mechanics. Some of his credited games include Medal of Honor: Pacific Assault, Tony Hawk’s Project 8 , Lord of the Rings: Conquest , and The Saboteur .
In 2008, Sanjay began teaching part-time at USC while still working full time in the game industry. After Pandemic Studios was shuttered at the end of 2009, he decided to refocus his efforts on teaching up-and-coming game programmers. His flagship course is an undergraduate-level game programming course that he has taught for more than ten consecutive semesters.
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Top customer reviews
It's platform-agnostic approach helps in undestanding the ins and outs of game coding, while making sure it won't get outdated soon.
If you need a more in-depth view on platform-specific code, the book also contains detailed reference to iOS and PC/Mac coding, with sample demos which will greatly improve your experience.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Sanjay Madhav starts the book with an overview of some classic games, how a game loop works, handling timing in games, and the idea of game objects. Next he discusses 2D games, sprites, scrolling, and tile maps. There is a quick chapter on linear algebra. Then the author continues with a treatment of 3D graphics, including coordinate spaces, lighting and shading, visibility and transformation. Handling input is covered as is sound. There is a chapter on physics, which I much appreciated, and then some quick coverage of cameras, artificial intelligence, user interface, scripting, and networking. Finally, the book closes with two example projects.
The author does a great job of explaining complex concepts in easy to understand language, especially in the math and physics chapters, which could be confusing otherwise. One of the pieces that I gained a lot from was the explanation of mouse picking 3D objects, which was described beautifully and made a lot of sense. The chapter on scripting languages was also helpful and relevant.
Overall I enjoyed the book, and think it would be helpful to beginning programmers, or experienced coders in other fields looking to get into game development. I feel that for intermediate to advanced game programmers, much of this book will be a review. Not to knock the book for that, though, I think it’s a great book if you understand the audience it’s aiming for. I mean, there were even a few bits of information that were new to me, however much of the book was about stuff I’ve seen before.
That said, I do like to read texts of various levels, and even beginner books can help you look at familiar problems in new ways. So I think it’s very much worth reading, especially if you are just starting out in game development.
I definitely recommend this book!
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