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Thread: java graphical interface game

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    Default java graphical interface game

    I work in education environment teaching at a secondary school social sciences like Economics and Business but have always been interested in computing and java programming. I have been running an after school enrichment in java programming.
    So far I have been teaching fundamentals of java programming like Boolean logic, loops, classes and arrays.
    I want to revamp my resources so it appeals to more KS3 students who wish to go straight into game developing.
    Is there any open source/shareware java games with graphics front end? I want the game to have graphical front end from the start so all I teach the students is game logic via “if statement”, “Boolean logic” etc.
    Typical games I am thinking of are Java Pac man game, java spaceship game, java maze game, java arcade type game however it must have a graphical interface.


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    Default Re: java graphical interface game

    Cross posted here.

    I request that you don't perpetuate the myth that someone can "go straight into game developing." Many gamers get into programming with that belief, looking for the mythical shortcut that doesn't exist, then creating their own to find that it's harder than they thought, finally failing in frustration. Failing in frustration can be avoided, and I request that teachers, who should understand that, help their students to understand that patience and study is required to tackle advanced topics, and then guide them through those basics to prepare them properly for the advanced topics. Programming at that level requires a better understanding of the basic and intermediate supporting subjects, including OOP, graphics, math, and (sometimes) physics.

    I don't think you'd fast track math students from algebra to calculus because that's what's sexy and appealing to them. Your maturity and understanding of the learning process would prevail, explaining that there's a foundation that needs to be laid before taking on the more advanced topics. It's the same with game programming.

    To understand the foundation required and to better understand the progression from the most basic subjects to the advanced ones needed for most game programming, I recommend you become a better advanced programmer with a thorough understanding of game programming. (I'm Not meaning to insult - you may already be an outstanding programmer).

    Coke and Code is an excellent site for tutorials on retro-like games (the author's passion), covering most (all?) game programming basics. There are other sites like that one, but none of them teach Java. They assume the user possesses a certain level of Java language proficiency. I suggest you work through a few of the basic tutorials to gain an understanding of the level of Java proficiency required and then build your teaching plan to lay the foundation your students need to get into game programming.

    There are also graphical programming environments, like Turtle Graphics, that start with teaching programming basics common to most languages with a graphical front end. That's kind of what you described, but I don't think that's what you meant.

    An interesting discussion, and I applaud you for what you're trying to do. Please continue the dialog, especially if I've missed the intent of your question, but even if you'd like other ideas. Good luck!

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    Default Re: java graphical interface game

    Quote Originally Posted by GregBrannon View Post
    Cross posted here.

    I request that you don't perpetuate the myth that someone can "go straight into game developing."

    I don't think you'd fast track math students from algebra to calculus because that's what's sexy and appealing to them. Your maturity and understanding of the learning process would prevail, explaining that there's a foundation that needs to be laid before taking on the more advanced topics. It's the same with game programming.


    There are also graphical programming environments, like Turtle Graphics, that start with teaching programming basics common to most languages with a graphical front end. That's kind of what you described, but I don't think that's what you meant.

    An interesting discussion, and I applaud you for what you're trying to do. Please continue the dialog, especially if I've missed the intent of your question, but even if you'd like other ideas. Good luck!
    12,13,14 year old boys are heavily interested in games. Everyday I see students take to Scratch and Python turtle very easily.

    I will reinforce that there are not short cuts and fundamentals need to be learnt.


    However I am looking a very a new approach to teach Java and the fundamentals will be taught like Boolean logic, loops, arrays etc.

    Thank you for reminding me and I hope to pass your message on

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    Default Re: java graphical interface game

    Where I came from (a different time and place) 14 - 16 year-old boys were extremely interested in cars. Many of us could even drive them and do simple repairs. Even with all of that interest and some basic operational knowledge, none of us could build one.

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    Default Re: java graphical interface game

    Quote Originally Posted by GregBrannon View Post
    Where I came from (a different time and place) 14 - 16 year-old boys were extremely interested in cars. Many of us could even drive them and do simple repairs. Even with all of that interest and some basic operational knowledge, none of us could build one.
    Apples to Oranges. Those 14-16 year old boys didn't have fabrication facilities most likely to follow through. 14-16 year old boys these days have access to all of the tools to be successful at learning and applying programming skills if they have the desire, support, and patience. Granted, it's not for everyone and at that age, patience can be hard to come by. But I disagree with your obvious logical fallacy that because in your time boys that wanted to build cars didn't (although I'm sure many built smaller prototype models such as pinewood derby cars, heck I remember making these as a young boy scout myself), that it means that 14-16 year old boys in this day and age couldn't design a game.

    I agree with much of your first post, although I think it is a bit sad that you are very negative in your approach. It is commendable that the OP is trying to find ways to reach his students with aspects of programming that interest them. This is the critical desire many good teachers have; they don't want to just educate, they want to have a profound impact. Good for him.

    I do agree though that it is a tough thing, but like I tell the fellow students that I tutor in programming at my school, programming is only as hard as you make it. Take what seem like big, insurmountable tasks and break them up into doable chunks. You don't need to teach your students how to master the Unity3d engine, you just need to set them on the path. Like he suggested, use beginner tools, teach some of the fundamentals of basic game design, and incorporate aspects of programming that you would otherwise teach into this. And let them know that most people who desire to get into game design don't succeed, but also that if they are willing to put in the work and be patient, success in this field is not impossible.

    Also, even if they are not successful at game design, programming has vast amounts of usefulness (most would argue much more so than in game design) outside of the realm of making games. I got into programming as a child with a book in QBasic with the idea that I would be the next Sid Meier or Chris Roberts. Nowadays although sometimes I still think I could be a game designer if I really wanted to, I have areas of interest in programming much more outside of the realm of game design. That doesn't mean that I started out that way and I'd say that had I not had any interest in game design, I may not have discovered a love for programming.

    Finally, I'm writing this sans glasses, so excuse me if I have any glaring grammar issues, I'm just about blind without them.

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    Default Re: java graphical interface game

    I agree with Greg purely because your approach seems to be discouraging the incredible power of modulation. The graphical interface and the inner workings of the game should not be intertwined too much (which is an EXTREMELY common mistake many of the helpers on this forum see with beginner programmers who are trying to make games).
    At the very least, a well designed and organized game should be modularized to have:
    1. A graphical library which provides all the basic graphical features for the game
    2. A game engine library which contains all of the game's logic
    3. A library which bridges the graphical and game engine libraries to make them work together

    The game engine and logic of a game should NOT be dependent on a graphical interface existing (and vice verse). Many ignorant/beginner programmers try to do the graphics and game logic together, not only in the same libraries, but the same classes. All you get from that are massive source files which cannot be accurately tested, debugged, or modified, and game logic which is WAY too coupled with the GUI.
    We see beginners come here and say stuff like: "item x won't move across the screen" and we look at their code and find they have coded the graphical stuff and the game logic together. Where do we even start to look for the problem? Is the graphical interface broken, or is the game logic broken? We would know if the programmer had designed it using modulation, because we would be able to test the graphical interface and the game logic independently.

    Want them to be able to make a bunch of games with relative ease? Teach them to make a graphical interface library which they can plug into all of their games. Teach them to build game logic which does not depend on a working graphical interface - core game logic should be tested with unit testing long before you try to test it with a graphical interface. And teach them to take both libraries and make them work together.
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