I used to be an avid gamer (since I was 7 or 8 years old until recently, and I am now 24). I played anything but my greatest love was turn-based strategy. Games just weren't doing it for me any more - I felt like I could "see the man behind the curtain" and the experience became dry and uninteresting.
Then I had an epiphany: I can really UNDERSTAND the man behind the curtain, give LIFE to the man behind the curtain, by creating my own games.
I have no prior experience with programming, but I am a self-teacher who has an excellent command of logic, a perfectionist attitude and a drive to succeed.
I am choosing Python as my first language because it is a newer, powerful language that is suited to many things, including gaming.
My current progression of projects, selected to baptize me into the world of game creation (specifically, turn based strategy games), is:
- various word/text games of my own devise
- videogame music quiz of my own devise (I make my own music, have done so for a game developer and love videogame sounds in general)
- tic tac toe
- a turned based soccer game of my own devise
I will supplement this with reading code of open source games. I have a particular interest in learning to program excellent AI.
My questions are:
1. What online community should I join that, based on the above, I will fit in with the most and get the most out of? (I already joined a real-life Python group and am going to my first meet-up soon! Exciting.)
2. Do you have any recommendations for open-source games to look at / think about contributing to?
3. Further to 2 above, how advanced should I be before I start looking at/contributing to open-source stuff?
4. Should I eschew books/courses in favor of reading free-stuff on the web, asking questions in forums and reading/understanding good code?
5. Do you have any random bits of wisdom/things to think about? Is there anything in my current post that seems way "off"?
Thanks very much for your help and advice.
One further thing: My educational background is in Economics/Philosophy, but my interests and hobbies are all over the place and I am prepared to dive into math if I have to (my current familiarity spans to college-level calculus).