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I have code that I would like help with, but I don't really know what's wrong with it.

I can't post it in the regular forums for StackOverflow or Game Development because I can't ask a specific question, and so it definitely won't be received well.

Is there a place where I can ask broad questions like "What's wrong with this part of my code?"

If not, I think that there should be a place where users can post troublesome snippets, and other users, motivated by points (like a "bounty"), could improve code for better readability, efficiency, or just help the user fix their code.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ You could try GDNet. \$\endgroup\$ – Josh Sep 30 '17 at 3:09
  • \$\begingroup\$ You could try and get 20 rep (total) and try the chat. \$\endgroup\$ – Vaillancourt Sep 30 '17 at 10:32
  • \$\begingroup\$ Possible duplicate of Where can I ask open-ended questions instead? \$\endgroup\$ – Anko Oct 23 '17 at 22:49
  • \$\begingroup\$ I think the focus on debugging questions specifically makes this question worth keeping open on its own, but maybe the title should be edited to clarify the distinction. \$\endgroup\$ – DMGregory Oct 24 '17 at 19:48
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There's a gray-area allowance (from my personal opinion and observation of others on this site) if the problem is a common problem or common mistake in game dev contexts even if not quite game development specific.

Otherwise the question needs to be specific to game development.

Example:

  • My path finding is taking too long, here's my code
    • sometimes accepted question because speed is a common path finding problem in video games that many visitors will benefit from. And different game genres hit different path-finding issues (eg: timed obstructions, 2D/3D, etc) so there's room for more than one of those questions.
  • Null reference exception (that happens to be) in my custom level loader
    • this is more a generic coding error and answers will not be useful to anybody else so less likely to be accepted.
  • Null reference exception when playing a sound in publicly available Engine XYZ
    • likely to be accepted if this is a common issue inside a commonly used game engine because many visitors will benefit.

Alternative sites are

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First off, this meta post discussing 'debug my code' criteria covers why these types of questions are frequently considered off-topic &/or of low value. Basically, this is the system doing what it was meant to do. While there is almost certainly value to you in having your code debugged, the value to others is not very high relative to the other sorts of questions that are on-topic & favorably received.

Also, as pointed out by others, feedback on a specific working piece of code with regards to best practices, performance & correctness is very on-topic for Code Review. If that's what you want, that's where to post.

Beyond that, if you want a specific answer, ask a specific question. At a minimum, identify the expected behavior & the observed behavior for your code. You wouldn't take the response "you didn't code it right" to be a very useful answer - it might be technically correct, but it doesn't show much effort & it doesn't contribute much to fixing the problem. The same is true of "what's wrong with my code?" - it's a question, but without some additional work, it's not a particularly useful question, either to those who might answer it or to those searching for answers. If you can't at least identify the expected & observed behavior, we really don't have much to go on.

Better yet, try to provide a minimal, complete, and verifiable example (MCVE) of your problem. It's a good skill to cultivate & sometimes the very process of making a MCVE will result in identifying and correcting the problem yourself.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ By "what's wrong with my code," I meant the overall question. Even with details about what it does and is supposed to do, people still don't like to see a post like that (at least in my experience of what I have seen, maybe it has changed). I think my code meets those criteria though, because it's barely over 100 lines long, and there are no runtime/compiletime errors or warnings, it is readable. You are probably right, but I'm still sort of hesitant because if it isn't well received, you lose privileges on the site. \$\endgroup\$ – Nate.Olson Sep 30 '17 at 15:24
  • \$\begingroup\$ True - I've edited my answer to include why that is the case. \$\endgroup\$ – Pikalek Sep 30 '17 at 16:07
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What's wrong with my code is probably Code Review, but it might be better off to carefully describe the problem you are having with the code. SO is likely better for such things, however.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Quoting Code Review's help (emphasis added): "Code Review is for open-ended questions about code that already works correctly (to the best of your knowledge). Questions seeking help about debugging or understanding code are off-topic for Code Review, and may be on-topic for Stack Overflow" \$\endgroup\$ – DMGregory Oct 15 '17 at 0:04

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