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  Mon Dec 02, 2013 7:27 am

What is the best language for a beginner to learn game programming in? I would like to learn how to program simple games, however I don't know which language to start in. I have already ruled out C++ because it seems quite hard, and really do not wish to use Game Maker because in my opinion it seems like cheating. My only previous programming knowledge is in Visual Basic 2008/2010, and I have been told that it is not very good for making games in. I did consider XNA, however it too seems quite advanced for somebody of my ability.

Amy: this post has been copied and pasted from Yahoo Answers, in order to spam links, but I have kept it in place as Theory's reply might well be useful for people in the future.

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  Mon Dec 02, 2013 8:43 am
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Generic Townsperson
My honest suggestion would be, in fact, Game Maker. It's a tool, and using the right tools for a job is not cheating, it's just common sense.
GML (the scripting language of Game Maker) is actually quite decent. Its syntax falls somewhere between Lua and C++, and it's quite easy to learn. When you create objects, levels, and the like, you can specify what code runs when for each of them. I personally use it as an interface to easily organize code, and the visual tools are quite helpful when it comes to lining things up (or editing a level, or similar). Trying to do that part without an editor is entirely possible, but it's a lot more work with few, if any, advantages.

I started with ROM hacking for SNES, then moved to RPG Maker, and then to Java (started with Minecraft modding), then to hacking Windows games (making trainers, bots, and the like), and then to C++. Now I find myself mixing and matching all of the above at will, which is a good place (for me) to be.

Just wanted to make the case that using tools is *not* cheating, in fact it is arguably the industry standard.
Assuming you're not ready to take on the advanced stuff, like rendering, hardware interfacing, and the like, your only other option would be to learn and use an engine. If that's what you intend to do, research and consider the following as just a few suggestions (the "best" depends entirely on what your goals are with it). LOVE, OGRE, Unity, Torque, 3d RAD (very dated, but extremely easy to learn), SFML. I have experience with all of these, as well as brewing your own engine, so if you have questions feel free to ask and I'd be happy to explain things further.

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