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Game Designer...What to do

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by kalisclark, Jul 2, 2009.

  1. kalisclark

    kalisclark New Member

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    Hi all, I am new to the forums and I just wanted some advice.

    I would like to be a game designer but I am unsure of which path to take. it's not like the other stuff where you can just go and sit the A+ exam I am thinking of going to uni but im 27 and it would take 4 years, has anyone got any advice?

    Many thanks

    Kal
     
  2. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    1. Learn to program
    2. Design a game
    3. ??
    4. Profit!

    :biggrin

    Welcome to the forums!
     
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  3. supernova

    supernova Gigabyte Poster

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    There are certs in software development and certain development tools.
    Also I am sure there are plenty of courses in software and skills that would be useful e.g. graphic design , 3d modelling

    if your going to uni look at one of the specialised game designing degrees there's a few out there (limited numbers).

    I agree getting your own games out there is a good idea a. to make money b. show off your skills.

    My father used to work with a chap that designed games (for the speccy) as a hobby, one of his games was given away by a magazine that he submitted it to, his work seen and later brought by a well known games company where he was made a director as a part of the deal. But things were different then.
     
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  4. jk2447

    jk2447 Petabyte Poster Moderator

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  5. LukeP

    LukeP Gigabyte Poster

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    I too, wanted to be a game developer some time ago. There is absolutely shedloads of information on the web, try googling for "How to become game developer" or similar. There are also forums about game development where you can find plenty tutorials on the topic.

    First of all. Write! If you don't know any programming language start off by reading programming tutorials or get a book. When you got the basics, start writing your own game. Tetris is good for start as it includes all basic elements that you will use in every game (display graphics, capture keyboard, game loop, sound, etc.)

    Don't worry that your code is perfect and optimized and what not. No one's is. Just write so it works. You will have a chance to improve later. There is somewhere on the web a forum post that lists what games in what order should be written to maintain good learning curve for beginners. The list includes games like tetris, space invaders, pong, and some others but in different order. I can't seem to find it at the moment but if I do I will post the link. I know Tetris was first on the list (with a good explanation why) and the second one Breakout. I never got to second stage so I don't know what's third :D.

    From what I heard though it is not all that great to be professional game developer. People tend to say it's much less stressful to write mainstream .NET applications.

    Good luck

    As for the Tetris game: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G0LtUX_6IXY
     
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  6. Daniel

    Daniel Byte Poster

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  7. kalisclark

    kalisclark New Member

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    Thanks guys!!!

    You have been very useful. I am going to try to get into uni and on the side I will try to learn C++ and start making things. If I don't get into uni I will do the latr in my spare time while working.

    I apreciate all the info you have put up here it is very useful and I will be checking in regularly.

    I will keep you posted and let you know where the path leads :)...which ever one I take.

    Many thanks

    Kal
     
  8. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

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    Using software and writing software are totally different.

    If you wanted to learn to become a games developer you're probably looking at 3-5 years before you will produce anything professional.

    A development career is tough, games programmer is probably one of the toughest IT careers out there.

    You could look at things like flash and XNA, ways of getting up and running faster.

    You say you want to be a 'designer', do you mean you only want to be involved in creative design and no coding ?

    You could maybe try art/design college, and yes learn 3D modelling/digital art too while you're at it.

    I'd have thought pure design roles in games must be pretty rare though. I'd have thought most jobs would be broadly coder or artist/animator.

    Try these links :-
    http://www.skillset.org/games/careers/article_2768_1.asp
    http://www.gignews.com/crosby1.htm

    Mathematrix works in games, maybe he can help you.
     
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  9. Mathematix

    Mathematix Megabyte Poster

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    I am a games developer, and for the life of me if you want to design games, why is everyone telling you to code?! :blink

    On the code side designers do not need to learn about compiled languages like C++, C# or whatever - but they should become familiar with scripting languages like Lua primarily, or Python. This is because in games certain events are 'scripted', in that they are triggered when a certain game event occurs - like triggering a cutscene for instance, or maybe spawning enemies in the games world, all examples of 'scripted events'.

    I would check out Sloperama and ask him questions directly at the IGDA forums where I used to be a programming moderator. The advice given so far will not get you very far in game design. Be sure that you learn:

    1. What makes a good or bad game.
    2. Analyse current titles and pinpoint what is right/wrong with them.
    3. And most important of all - how to create a game design pitch.

    Good luck. :)
     
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  10. Mathematix

    Mathematix Megabyte Poster

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    Thanks, dmarsh! Nice spelling there. :biggrin
     
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  11. m3lt

    m3lt Byte Poster

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    I suppose I am not the only one who at one point played WoW for a very long time. :p:oops:

    Oh and if you want to be a games designer mate, I can get you some nice ebooks about the subject.

    You have to look into it though, because there are writers, level designers, character designers, programmers, developers, etc etc...

    So its up to you which part of making a game you like. I suggest you search Amazon for books on the subject, they are very very good!

    But, for now you can check: http://darkbasic.thegamecreators.com

    Go to their forums and see the stickies and you will be designing games in no time. ;)
     
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  12. wagnerk
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    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

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    I don't know if this will be of use to you, but a mate of mine wants to also be a games developer/designer (can't remember which) and after some research found Train2Game. They offer the Tiga Games Design & Games Development Diplomas, TIGA is the national trade association that represents game developers in the UK and in Europe.

    Since this is, in essence, 3rd party reseach I can't agree or disagree with it (I haven't looked into it with much detail), but it may be something you want to check out?.

    -Ken
     
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  13. UKDarkstar
    Honorary Member

    UKDarkstar Terabyte Poster

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    The Wiltshire Branch of the BCS had a presentation on the games industry a while back which also gave some info about getting into it.

    Details are here and you can download a pdf of the presentation.
     
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  14. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

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    Opps, my bad, never noticed the exact spelling... :oops:
     
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  15. Mathematix

    Mathematix Megabyte Poster

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    Not many people do! :cry: :biggrin
     
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  16. Mathematix

    Mathematix Megabyte Poster

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    That was two years ago! :biggrin

    I remember hearing about that. The BCS and the games industry had minor issues sometime back because of our lack of representation within the BCS even though we are one of the foremost industries for the advancement of computer technology.

    The BCS still won't pay any attention. :x
     
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  17. UKDarkstar
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    UKDarkstar Terabyte Poster

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    May still be some helpful stuff in there tho'

    As to the rest, I think we've had this debate before so not much point going off-topic again to what the original OP asked
     
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  18. Mathematix

    Mathematix Megabyte Poster

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    Actually, there was nothing in there that would be helpful. The BCS know little to nothing about the games industry because it doesn't take an interest.
     
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  19. Slimepuppy

    Slimepuppy New Member

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    Games are a lot of work, unless you have some really simple and addictive idea like Tetris. One idea is to get some of the old games and rework it, I dug out an old BBC Micro - some of the games were totally rubbish I'll not mention them. Still there are some old 1980's games that are hard to beat for addictiveness and the 30's something will enjoy them. Still if you want to try programming OpenGL & DirectX would be the best to learn for graphics.
     
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  20. dazza786

    dazza786 Megabyte Poster

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    That didn't originate from wow :/
     
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