Hey guys. I have very little experience programming. I took two courses in HTML which isn't even really programming I suppose, but thats all I have to work off of. I've decided I want to pursue programming more, hopefully as a career. I love video games and I think I would really enjoy programming games, so I started learning C++ on my own using a textbook called accelerated C++. I've been making steady progress although it has been somewhat difficult I am going to keep working at it as much as I can.
The reason I'm posting is to ask a couple of questions.
First, how important is a computer science degree if I want to get a job as a programmer in games? What about outside of the gaming industry? I just finished 2 years of college studying Finance and frankly the idea of going back for a fresh 4 year degree doesn't appeal to me. I'm interested in learning on my own and trying to build a small portfolio and possibly getting an entry level job from that, maybe even a QA job just to get into the industry. What are your thoughts? Is it really important to have a CS degree or if I can work on some mods or small projects to show I'm capable can you get a job from that?
Secondly, how would you recommend learning C++ or other languages without attending a 4 year university? Are there any online resources you would recommend? As I said I'm working through a textbook on my own and obviously books can be very useful but I want to try to learn through other mediums as well and I am unsure as to what is out there beyond college courses.
Lastly, what languages are most sought after right now, and what would you recommend that i learn first? C++ seemed like a logical choice since I wanted to get into game programming, but what other languages might I want to learn either to get a job in games or outside of games? Is C++ a good first language or is there something else I would be better served learning?
Thanks a lot, really appreciate any advice you guys can give.