Do you ever freeze up just before starting a new project? I do. I get hung up thinking about the perfect directory structure, where the art and sound data should be stored, how the build process should work, and mostly how I will keep my new game from becoming a horrible mess. By the end of a project, it usually turns out to be a mess anyway! So, I'm always thankful I plan out a directory structure, employ good version control tools, and incorporate automation scripts that all keep entropy just low enough for a human like me to be able to keep track of what I'm doing.
In this chapter I'm going to tell you everything you need to know to get your game projects organized from the start, and how to use project files and version control tools effectively. This is an area where many game developers try to cut corners so my advice is to pay close attention and invest your time and money wisely to ensure that your projects go together smoothly.
As you read through this chapter you might feel that you are getting an education in software engineering. Try not to feel overwhelmed. These techniques are very critical to the process of successfully developing games and they are used by real game developers.