Recap – “Knowing How to Code Gives Us Superpowers”

Hello everyone!

This is Paul, Technical Director at Altitude Games.  Altitude recently sponsored the DLSU Manila Technology Summit last June 11, 2016, and I had the privilege to give a talk on game startups and game development.  You can view the full slides above, but today I wanted to delve more into one of the slides:


En Sabah Nur’s version of the Vulkan API

Here in Altitude, programmers are fondly called wizards, usually with this accompanying gif:


I believe this is an apt description for the work that programmers do.  Sci-fi author Arthur C. Clarke said that any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magicthose who don’t have any knowledge about programming are usually mystified by the amazing new features that programmers easily bring to life.

The thing about magic is that it’s only magical if we don’t understand the craftiness that happens behind the scenes. Once we pull off the covers and slow down the frames, we find that it’s not magic after all, but really something simple and brilliant in execution.


At Altitude, we like to share our knowledge during game development group and student events. During these talks, I always get asked: What’s the best way to get started in making games? My answer is simple: just take the plunge and get started. Game development is not something you learn from a 30-minute talk; it’s a craft that you need to practice regularly and continuously refine as new technologies and paradigms are introduced.

The best and easiest way to learn is to start developing in Unity.  Unity has become the standard engine in game development, used by small and big companies alike.  Their official documentation is one of the best places to start:

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Just some of the thousands of games created using Unity


Once you learn the basics of Unity, you’ll have a starting point on your game development journey. More importantly, you’ll realize there’s so much more to learn. Like a wizard learning his first spell, you’ll want to go deeper into the dusty tomes of knowledge — adding more spells to your repertoire, and mixing and matching them to produce increasingly complex creations!

I got into game development because I was entranced by the stories and universes of the games that I played. I was fortunate enough to have had access to computers and a good computer science education, allowing me to be able to peel back the curtain and take a look behind the scenes.

My hope is that our team at Altitude can someday make games that have a similar impact, and that we can inspire others to become apprentice wizards and get started making their own magical worlds.


Dating myself by ending with a gif of one of my favorite games of all-time, Civilization!

GIF References:
* Apocalypse : X-Men : Days of Future Past Credits Scene : 
* Wizard Party!
* – Famous Magic Tricks, Explained 
* Civilization 6 Cinematic Trailer – 
Posted in Blog.