Game programming, a subset of game development, is the software development of video games. Game programming requires substantial skill in software engineering and computer programming in a given language, as well as specialization in one or more of the following areas: simulation, computer graphics, artificial intelligence, physics, audio programming, and input. For massively multiplayer online games (MMOGs), knowledge of additional areas such as network programming and database programming are required. Though often engaged in by professional game programmers, some may program games as a hobby.
Like other software, game development programs are generated from source code to the actual program (called the executable) by a compiler. Source code can be developed with almost any text editor, but many professional game programmers use a full integrated development environment like Unity. Once the game's initial design has been agreed upon, the development language must be decided upon. The choice depends upon many factors, such as language familiarity of the programming staff, target platforms, the execution speed requirements and the language of any game engines, APIs or libraries being used.