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Pointers are special in C++. Pointers can be used to point to a variable instead of becoming a variable. Here is an example: There are 5 integer variables. Each one is named accordingly (anInteger1, anInteger2, ect). However we have a function that uses whatever integer the user chooses.
When running the program, the user makes his choice to pick whatever integer he wants. When that happens, the pointer is pointed toward that integer. Finally, whenever the user is ready, he will continue to the next stage, where a function is run to return the value of the integer he has chosen.
The function will automatically pick whatever integer we have the pointer aimed at.
Pointers in Scripting
There are also pointers used in scripting. A few working pointers in the source engine:
- !player - The local player
- !player* - All players in a multiplayer game
- !activator - What entity caused the current entity to run it's output. (ie, Player breaks crate, so !activator points to the player.)
- !picker - The entity that the local player is looking at.
- !self - Whenever an output runs, this is the entity the output is running from.