Creating Games From Scratch Using SDL 2.0

Create your own games from beginning to end on popular, crossplatform, SDL 2.0
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  • Lectures 24
  • Length 1.5 hours
  • Skill Level Intermediate Level
  • Languages English
  • Includes Lifetime access
    30 day money back guarantee!
    Available on iOS and Android
    Certificate of Completion
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About This Course

Published 11/2014 English

Course Description

Have you ever wanted to program your own game in C++ from scratch? Do you want to enjoy easy & free multiplatform deployment (Windows, Mac, Linux iOS and Android?). In this course, we will have a basic introduction to programming games in C++ using the SDL 2.0 library. We will use SDL 2.0 to:

  • Get a window on the screen
  • Draw line and rectangle primitives
  • Draw sprites on the screen
  • Use object-oriented principles to manage Sprites and game character data
  • Load and play sounds & music from disk
  • Do collision detection using Rectangles
  • Manage game state & game state transitions using finite state machines

Overview & Motivation

Why use SDL 2.0? Many people opt to go with complete game engines, such as Unity or Unreal Engine 4, to create their games. Unity and Unreal have licensing costs associated with them. Are you prepared to take on that extra cost? What if you can avoid spending that money on the engine and spend it on licensing assets and other resources instead?

What about using a free and open source sound, graphics and input API to deploy your game to all devices? And the freedom to program in pure C or C++?

LibSDL lets you do all that. Simple C commands will enable you to load sounds & music, load & display hardware accelerated graphics easily. The simple framework I provide in the code examples here will make it easy for you to get started creating your own games from scratch.

Programming from C++ directly (instead of using an engine) will give you much more control over how things get done inside your game. If you like raw programming and always wanted to see how games like Super Mario Brothers, Dragon Warrior, and other classic NES games would get assembled, try this course!

Many professional & indie games use libsdl already, including:

Robin hood - the Legend of Sherwood, Left 4 Dead 2, Steel Storm, Edna & Harvey, Proteus, Psychonauts, Amnesia, FastForward, Syberia, AwesomeNauts and more.

What are the requirements?

  • To be able to follow this course, you will need an intermediate skill level with coding in C++
  • You will need an IDE in your chosen development environment (On Windows, usually Visual Studio, Mac=Xcode)
  • You will need to download SDL 2.0 from (free & open source)

What am I going to get from this course?

  • Program your own 2d games using SDL 2.0
  • Understand the discrete nature of games and the "game loop"
  • Play sfx & music in your game
  • Do body body collision detection and resolution

Who is the target audience?

  • This course is not about creating robust game engines!
  • We will see some typical engine code (collision detection code), but our focus is on game assembly using SDL
  • This game is not about creating game art.. that princess is in another castle!
  • If you're interested in interfacing with SDL 2.0 directly (with no other layers between!) this course is for you
  • Our core focus in this course will be creating games using SDL

What you get with this course?

Not for you? No problem.
30 day money back guarantee.

Forever yours.
Lifetime access.

Learn on the go.
Desktop, iOS and Android.

Get rewarded.
Certificate of completion.


Who uses SDL anyway?
Indie Development
Section 1: Structure of a Game
Game software is complex!
while( true ) { update(); draw(); }
The discreteness of the game loop
Section 2: Setting up SDL
SDL sample program
Installing SDL 2.0 on Windows
Installing SDL 2.0 on Mac OS X
[Part 1/2] SDL 2.0 Barebones Bootstrap/Starter Explained (SDL_Init())
[Part 2/2] SDL 2.0 Barebones Bootstrap/Starter Explained (draw function)
Section 3: Basic Sprites
This is a Visual Studio project with the Spriting example code
You need this to load PNG's and JPG's!
Sprite class data members overview
Sprite::Sprite ctor and image load
Moving the Sprite 1 - Controller class update()
Moving the Sprite 2 - sprite displacement
Moving the Sprite 3 - Sprite::update() (bounds)
Section 4: Basic game structure using PING: FSM's & Sounds
We use the Ping project to load sfx & music
We use the Ping project ( to play music & sound
We use the Ping project ( to learn about FSM's
Section 5: Side Scroller game using "Adventures of Dario"
CONTENT: Adventures of Dario
Use of the RectF class for collision detection between adjacent bodies

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Instructor Biography

William Sherif, Professional programmer

William Sherif is a competent C++ programmer of 8+ years. He has a wide variety of experiences, from games programming to web programming. He has also been a university course instructor (sessional) for 7 years.

He has published several apps in the iTunes store, including strum and MARSHALL OF THE ELITE SQUADRON.

His interests are varied, but his focus has always been pleasing his clients.

In the past he has been acclaimed for delivering course material in an easy to understand manner.

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