What's a good starting point? (Tutorials + Learning Materials)

Started by deadsuperhero, April 03, 2019, 12:38:00 AM

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Hey all!

I discovered Solarus by searching for an Open Source / Free Software game engine, and frankly was blown away by the quality of some of the games using it so far. I think it could totally serve the purposes for what I ultimately want to do (top-down quest-driven RPGs, with some goofy mini-games possibly), but I noticed that the documentation is pretty technical (mostly a book of references to functions), and I haven't found a lot of tutorials for working with the system yet. I'm eager to toy around with this, but I'm really curious as to whether there are any tutorial resources / educational materials for learning the ins and outs of the system.

So far, I'd noticed this YouTube series, but I'm curious what else is out there. If anyone here has found something useful for them personally, I'd love to learn about it!
Sent from your dad's iPhone

Christopho's youtube tutorials are the best resource for beginners learning how to use Solarus and an overview of its core features.

My recommendation is to do the following:

  • Start off by watching Christopho's youtube tutorials
  • Make a your own quest that's simple and doesn't require much scripting
  • Once you're comfortable with all that, start getting into writing your own lua scripts and learning lua
  • When you get stuck, ask questions on discord or on the forums
  • Looking at the scripts used in existing games is also a good resource once you become more comfortable with lua

Some good resources for learning lua:
Programming in Lua (first edition) - Free electronic book, good for beginners to lua
Lua Reference Manual (lua version used by Solarus is 5.1) - Reference for standard lua functions
Solarus Quest Documentation - Reference for Solarus specific functions
lua-users tutorials - Gives examples of using standard lua functions

Solarus is extremely powerful, and the biggest limitation is your own imagination.

Cool, in that case I'll dig in! Thanks for the links.  :D
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Quote2. Make a your own quest that's simple and doesn't require much scripting
I can't agree with this enough! Some solarus devs were talking about where to start a while ago, and I think we all agreed that making a couple maps without any scripting to familiarize yourself with the editor's interface and map entities is the best place to start. I'd recommend making something like a town first. Then maybe a dungeon that doesn't have a dungeon item. I think it's a really good idea to do these before you start trying to make your game, or implement any quests.

The one place I disagree with llamazing is that I think the biggest limitation is each developer's commitment to learning. Solarus is a great engine, both powerful and easy to use, but it does take time to learn lua and the solarus API. I think a big obstacle is people jumping in, trying to make their dream game, and getting bored and discouraged. You might not be creating complex branching quests with unique mechanics in just a couple months. But if you persist, you totally can do that with solarus!

Also, let someone know if you can't find the link to the discord server, I think between all the solarus devs, one of us is on there at just about any hour of the day, haha : )