Tricks of the 3D Game Programming Gurus-Advanced 3D Graphics and Rasterization (Other Sams)

ISBN 10: 0672318350 / ISBN 13: 9780672318351
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Today is the greatest time in history to be in the game business. We now have the technology to create games that look real! Sony's Playstation II, XBOX, and Game Cube are cool! But, all this technology isn't easy or trivial to understand - it takes really hard work and lots of Red Bull. The difficulty level of game programming has definitely been cranked up these days in relation to the skill set needed to make games. Andre LaMothe's follow-up book to Tricks of the Windows Game Programming Gurus is the one to read for the latest in 3D game programming. When readers are finished with Tricks of the 3D Game Programming Gurus-Advanced 3D Graphics and Rasterization, they will be able to create a full 3D texture-mapped, lit video game for the PC with a software rasterizer they can write themselves. Moreover, they will understand the underlying principles of 3D graphics and be able to better understand and utilize 3D hardware today and in the future.

Review: To be an ordinary programmer is one thing: You need only learn how to interact with the computer on its own terms, creating buttons and combo boxes that have no significance away from the screen. To be a game programmer--particularly one that writes games with environments that appear three-dimensional to their players--is something else entirely. Such work requires that the flat screen simulate the real world, complete with light, shading, texture, gravity, and momentum. It's all quite complicated. Tricks of the 3D Game Programming Gurus helps its readers make great progress in creating 3D worlds and the action that goes on in them.

That this large, dense book manages to explain how to design and implement a 3D game while neither glossing over too many details nor swamping the reader with trivia is a credit to author André LaMothe. He opens by showing (and explaining) the C++ source code of a simple but full-fledged 3D spaceflight shooter game--a real boost to the reader's confidence. From there, he explains the complicated geometric concepts and mathematics that underlie realistic games (always with an eye toward software algorithms) and shows how to use the many APIs and libraries (including Microsoft DirectX 9.0) that make the world-builder's job easier. Make no mistake: Designing and building convincing games with 3D visuals and behaviors that convincingly approximate real-world physics is hard work. In this book, LaMothe helps you get it done and enjoy the process. --David Wall

Topics covered: How to design and build 3D worlds and the goings-on within them. Aside from mathematics and geometry, this book focuses on wireframe models, shading, rendering, and animation. Microsoft DirectX 9.0 gets special attention.

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