Hello. It has dawned on me that this year i am turning 20 years old and i feel that i have completely lost direction.
I am just looking for some advice and some beginner steps into the games industry, when i first left school i enrolled on a games development course at my local college, though enjoying it, i was unsure on what i really wanted to do so i left to persue a career in the navy, after being on the waiting list for over a year, i went into full time work and became stuck, after attempting college a second time round studying A-levels, i realised this also was not for me, after a short stint i am now back in the same position, working pay check to pay check, but still craving the original dream of being involved in the games industry as i feel this is one of the only thing's i feel that i am really passionate about.
Just looking for someone to size this up for me and offer me some entry advice, sorry about the bio there i just wanted to get across that i am feeling stuck in a job that i do not enjoy dreaming of a career in an industry i would love to be a part of.
Thankyou, i hope this question is not to broad if so please say, cheers.
First question: there are many different disciplines in the gaming industry. Programming, art, quality assurance, design, production, marketing, UI/UX, IT, etc. What, specifically, do you want to do? Otherwise, as you can probably tell, you're going to be spreading yourself pretty thin...
Here's my advice, based purely off my own experience.
Before I ever knew how to program, I really wanted to make games. But, because I lacked fundamental programming skills, I failed and gave up very quickly.
Finally, I got an entry level job doing software development. I had IT experience and they basically paid me to learn programming. I learned fast and was productively quickly, so that was all good. After more than 5 years of doing programming as a full time job, I'm making good progress in my game project. I have no aspirations of becoming a professional game programmer. If an opportunity comes up at some point to switch to games, sure, that'd be fun. But the part I love is not games; I love the programming. So that's where I'm coming from.
To get to the point: If you want a career in _game_ development, I would suggest first getting some experience in programming of any kind. Game programming, in my opinion (and I'm sure others will agree), is one of the most complex and challenging areas in the programming world. I didn't have any success at all in game programming until I had a few years of experience and understood enough fundmental programming concepts to figure out how to build things.
Software development is a craft, and there are many applications of this craft: systems programming, web applications, desktop applications, mobile, games, etc. Any programming experience you gain--of any sort--will help you.
The other reason why I suggest trying to get a job as a programmer (doing any kind of programming) is: Before you get too deep into a specific area, find out first if you really like programming for a living. If it turns out you do, great. Keep going, get experience, and set aside some time for side projects. Learn as much as you can, get experience, be patient, and connect with like-minded people.
Obviously schooling doesn't appear to be the right route for you.
Have you tried to, you know, actually create a game? If not, I would do that.
Now, if you need advice as to how to *actually* go about creating a game, that there is a different question, which we can also answer, although if you search a bit you will find thousands of such answers.
Now, if you are the type that simply can't stick with something, programming is probably not for you. It certainly isn't an instant gratification type industry.