Dearest anons, I really want to finally crown my life long dream of having one vidya under my name, but I'm struggling to find some solutions to various practical problems. I will do some digging of my own, once I'm done with a few life related errands, but I really wanted to ask stuff from those who are more experienced than me. I know there's the aggydaggy wiki, but other than cursory glances and some backups I've made, I've yet to fully delve into it.
So here goes. I'm trying to create a 3D Kart Racing game, incorporating stuff from various racing and non racing titles I know to make something that, while not entirely unique, could possibly become enjoyable in the long run to at least a small circle of people (may seem odd to you but another title I enjoy to this day is basically the passion project of five people and it's still played by an average of 10 daily). Here's my questions:
0) What is the objectively best programming environment to create modern games (yes everything should run off Assembly for some people but I want to finish before the Chinese takeover of the West)?
1) Assuming I'd use some pre-built engine (I want to create one of my own, but I don't have the skills or mental fortitude to tackle this kind of project), what would be the most optimal choice? I'd be down for tweaking it a bunch if need be, but I want to aim for a game that is consistently fluid even on modern medium-end hardware, don't really care much about graphical fidelity right now.
2) Are there any good channels, irc chats, (((discord))) groups and whatnot to discuss game development, maybe even doing some programming on the side to hone my skills?
3) As for 3D, I see a lot of tutorials to basically sculpt your way into making a model, but is there any trick or guide to make a model with the absolute minimum number of polygons? Bear in mind, I don't mean "making a low poly model", I'm talking about creating a 3D model that still looks presentable (at least to a Source Engine game tier) but that shaves off as many unnecessary tris to make the game run faster without looking like hot garbage?
4) Are there any good resources for stock sound effects or those CDs with tons of samples that don't just come off youtube links?
5) Other than Demo Days, are there any good places where anons or even non anons can share their own vidya with others who could playtest them?
Thanks in advance lads.