Hey forum peoples

Im graduating soon from university and am hoping to get into game programming/design. Ive had telephone interviews with a couple of companys along with some CV assessments, and the gist of what they've been saying seems to be that I've got the skills, got the enthuisiasm, but don't have the experience (very few demos) and I was thinking of learning XNA to create some more professional code.

Some questions though...

  1. Im not sure how this sounds, but how similar is XNA to flash/Actionscript Ive designed games for it before, and im fairly sure I can program my future game idea in flash, but how hard would it be to transfer it over
  2. How easy is it to design 3D models can it be done as part of the IDE or does it have to be done with a seperate program
  3. How about 2D can you say, import a bitmap and then mess around with its properties
  4. I know a little bit of C# (enough to get started with XNA I think), but is it object oriented

If theres anything else that I should know, please mention it.

Thanks for your help

Re: XNA Game Studio Express Some questions before I start learning XNA

George Clingerman

XNA is a great tool to help build up some demo content. It is fairly easy to use if you are familiar with coding. It sounds like you are more of an entry level developer so there is going to be some serious learning period before you'll be comfortable with XNA to actually make a game.

XNA is not similar to flash/Actionscript, it's basically C#. So if you're comfortable making applications in C#, then it's not much of a stretch to begin making games with XNA. Making the transition from flash to XNA/C# is more of a leap.

3D modeling is not something I'm familiar with, but depending on what you're making, I'd say it's a fairly difficult task at first, but once you get used to the tools, you can do some standard models fairly simply. It is not something that you do in the C# IDE. You use some external modeler to create your model, then add that to your project.

Yes, you can import bitmaps and other 2D file formats and modify them slightly in code. There really isn't any way to change their properties in the IDE however. So standardly you make the images you want for your 2D game in a separate application and then do some slight "effect" changes to them in your game using code.

C# is object oriented. Asking that question kind of shows that before you begin developing with XNA you'd really have to work a bit on increasing your C# skills first. Without a decent developer knowledge of how to develop using C# trying to learn to use the XNA framework, how game development works AND how the C# syntax works all at once is going to be a little daunting and become frustrating quickly. Here is a thread with some resources on learning C# that should help out in that area.

If your goal is to show that you can make and design games and not necessarily that you can program games, then you might want to look at TorqueX instead of XNA. TorqueX is made by Garage Games (a Microsoft partner) and uses C# and XNA to create more of a drag and drop game making environment. It uses scripting, object properties, etc. to make game development with XNA more approachable and faster.

Whatever you decide, good luck and I hope that helps.