DirectX gives programmers tools to create powerful graphics for games.
Before the creation of DirectX, the Visual Basic environment was not able to handle powerful graphic programming for games. Without the use of multimedia to create the most visually striking games with advanced graphics, sound, and multi-player tools, game programmers had to rely on simple puzzle and card games. With DirectX, programmers can use several components to create top-notch games.
Visual Basic with DirectX
In order to program games with DirectX you first must have a general knowledge of the Visual Basic language with some sort of programming experience that will allow you to write a program using Visual Basic 5 or later. You will not be able to use the earlier versions of Visual Basic for the latest graphical components of DirectX.
The X in DirectX stands for the particular application programming interface (API) name such as Direct3D, DirectDraw, DirectMusic, DirectPlay, and DirectSound. These multimedia components must be used to create your dynamic and entertaining games and for handling tasks related to game programming and video on Microsoft platforms using Visual Basic.
The most used component of DirectX is Direct3D, which is what you use to draw games with 3D graphics. When you use Direct3D to draw your 3D graphics, you don’t have to worry about what type of video card it’s going to be drawn on or about any limitations surrounding that video card.
DirectDraw is used to deliver graphics in applications where top performance is important. Games are a class of application in which a small performance edge can mean the difference between extreme sales and heavy losses.
The DirectMusic component lets you load and play sounds from files or resources in MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface), WAV (Waveform Audio File Format), or DMP (DirectMusic Producer). The small file size of DirectMusic soundtracks allows your music and sound effects to be composed and played, and provide flexible interactive control over the way they are played.
The DirectPlay component lets you program online games with voice communications, recording and playback, all of which make it easy to connect over the Internet or a network. DirectPlay has a lot of functionality that you use to manage and send game data back and forth between hosts and players.
DirectSound lets you play sound effects through WAV files, which enable your applications to produce sounds and music. It is like a CD player that lets you play, pause, stop, rewind, fast forward, and adjust pitch and volume in your games.