Given that this book covers the SFML library, it's necessary to have it downloaded and set up. Chapter 1, It's Alive! It's Alive! – Setup and First Program covers this process step by step.
Additionally, a compiler or an IDE that supports C++11 is needed in order to compile the code that we're about to write. The code for the book has been written on and compiled with the Microsoft Visual Studio 2013 IDE on a system that runs Windows 7.