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Game Programming Gems 4: v. 4 (Game Programming Gems (W/CD)) Hardcover – 2 Apr 2004

3.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 703 pages
  • Publisher: Charles River Media; Har/Cdr edition (2 April 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1584502959
  • ISBN-13: 978-1584502951
  • Product Dimensions: 19.3 x 4.4 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 913,355 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

SECTION 1 GENERAL PROGRAMMING SECTION 2 MATHEMATICS SECTION 3 PHYSICS SECTION 4 ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE SECTION 5 GRAPHICS SECTION 6 NETWORK AND MULTIPLAYER SECTION 7 AUDIO APPENDIX: ABOUT THE CD-ROM

About the Author

Andrew Kirmse (San Rafael, CA) was the co-inventor and director of Meridian 59 (1996), and the graphics programmer on Star Wars: Starfighter (2001). He has degrees in physics, mathematics, and computer science from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and currently works for Lucas Arts Entertainment Company. He has contributed to all three volumes in the Game Programming Gems series, and served as the section editor for Network and Multiplayer Programming for Game Programming Gems 3.


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Customer Reviews

3.0 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It was purchased as a present for my Grand Child who is studying Programming. He is very pleased with it. the dellivery was on time and in good condition. It is really only for Gaming programmers. At the end ov 2013 he hopes to qualify as a Programming Graduate, and get a good job. He was sraight into the books and reading with enthusiasm.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I own all the previous volumes of this series and always look forward to the next installment.

My main gripe is that some of the chapters (Networking/multiplayer and Artificial Intelligence) were a little short and contained mainly very very high level information, finding the network section to be unhelpful.

Overall the book was good quality, with useful information in it... It's a shame that they have such a high price tag!
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Format: Hardcover
This book is much like the other Game Programming Gems books, in that it features a selection of articles across the wide spectrum of game programming. However it feels like this book's content has been squeezed somewhat by the presence of the AI Game Programming Wisdom and Massively Multiplayer Game Development books, with Gems picking up what's left. As such the AI and Networking sections are a bit thin and lacking anything special, whereas the Graphics section still dominates. Perhaps this is not so surprising given that most developers were still focused primarily on graphical technology at the time of publishing, compared to today where arguably more developers are free to work on other aspects of the game. As such, if you are working with an existing graphics engine you may find that this book doesn't offer enough in the way of usable articles to justify the price.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars 5 reviews
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good addition to the series 20 May 2004
By Dave Astle - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
The latest in this series of highly successful books delivers 60 new articles covering diverse game development topics. Once again, the articles are written by an impressive group of people that collectively represent a substantial amount of game industry experience. The writing style and editing is very good, as usual, with a professional but casual tone, making the articles easy to read.
Although all of the topics are relevant to game development, because they are typically very narrow in scope, your mileage will vary depending on what exactly you're working on. This is true for the entire series. It's likely that you won't be reading the book cover to cover, but rather a handful of chapters here and there as you need them. This fourth volume is particularly useful in that respect because it includes a comprehensive index of the first 4 volumes
Another noteworthy change is the addition of a physics section. Given how important physics has become in game development, this is a welcome addition. It's also interesting to see a couple of chapters that use Python and Java (though only one for each) for the sample code, rather than the C++ used for most of the chapters. DirectX is used for much of the sample code, with OpenGL being used in a few of the graphics chapters.
This volume does have a few shortcomings, which again are typical for the series. Due to the length of the articles (about 5 to 15 pages each), some of them were a bit too short to cover the topic with sufficient depth. This is pretty subjective, since many people may be satisfied with a more high-level explanation, but it seems to me that the series would be better served with a smaller number of slightly longer articles that go into greater depth.
I also think that the price of the book is rather high. True, it's hardbound, but similar books have been published (notably, GPU Gems, which is hardbound, the same length, and printed in full-color) with notably lower prices. Since the book covers such a broad range of topic areas - only a handful of which will be of interest to you - the value of this book is diminished somewhat.
Despite the price, this book is still an important part of any complete game programming library. If you have the previous volumes, you'll want to pick it up for the index if nothing else.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book but overpriced 24 May 2004
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
The original games gems was a really good book, but I found Game Gems 2 and 3 to be less cutting edge and common knowledge topics. Games Gems 4 is back to covering cutting edge ideas and topics.
Games Gems is kind of like a recipe book with all kinds of little coding ideas/tricks. I will say that some of them I have not seen anywhere else. I was most impressed with the articles about shadows. My biggest complaint other than price is that I would have like to see more of the articles have both OpenGL and DirectX source code. This book is geared toward intermediate to advanced level programmers. The retail price of $70.00 is really high for a book even if it is a hardcover.
4 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A "must-have" compendium 9 July 2004
By Midwest Book Review - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Featuring contributions from expert, professional game developers, Game Programming Gems 4 is an in-depth and recommended reference and resource filled cover to cover with essays, each covering everything from general programming and debugging to mathematics, physics, aritifical intelligence issues, graphics, network and multiplayer concerns, audio, and so much more. Game Programming Gems 4 is not a standard instructional textbook; rather, it is a supplementary guide packed with the latest cutting-edge insights to creating quality games - most code is written in C++, but some Java and Python are also represented. A "must-have" compendium of insight, discoveries, tips, tricks, and techniques for every serious game programmer's library. An accompanying Windows CD-ROM contains source code, listings, and demos to complement the articles and essays.
1 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars True Gems of Programming Wisdom 27 Mar. 2005
By John Matlock - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Intended for the intermediate to advanced game programmer, this is a book that will literally have something for everyone. It contains sixty-two 'gems' that is, articles on how to some particular aspect of game programming. Sophisticated game programming is probably the most complex programming there is. And this book goes into some pretty sophisticated programming details. It is written by a collection of the best in the business today.

For instance:

3.1 - Ten Fingers of Deaty: Algorithms for Combat Killing

5.11 - Heat and Haze Post-Processing Effects

7.2 - A Simple Real-Time Lip-Synching System

There is no question that the main driving force for faster computers is to make for more realistic gaming. And the faster computers allow more sophisticated programming to be done to make the grass wave realistically.

This is probably not a book you're going to sit down and read from cover to cover. You'll probably scan through and read the ones that are applicable to just what you need to do next. But then in a couple of weeks, in a couple of months....
3 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Resource to add to your collection 25 Jun. 2004
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
This book contains a lot of really useful tidbits that are helpful to anyone in the game programming or simulation fields. It should be on everyones shelf as a reference.
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