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emcconnell

Member Since 02 Apr 2012
Offline Last Active Yesterday, 10:05 AM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Game Design with a CS Masters Background

24 October 2014 - 10:05 AM

I am pretty qualified to give you good advice. I have a MS in Computer Science and I am currently a designer at a top of the line AAA studio. It's generally hard to go straight into design and honestly I am glad to have had a variety of programming jobs.

 

The key to making the transition to design is to always be improving your design skills. Listen to game design podcast, read game design books and most importantly, design games. In my humble opinion, having a MS in CS and a decent portfolio of games you created is 1,000 times better then any "design degree" or video game degree.

 

I've darted in and out of the industry a few times, do not let that discourage you.

 

Think about it like this, if you keep making games on your own, you'll eventually get good enough that you won't need a studio to work for because you'll be able to support yourself off your own creations.


In Topic: Best Tools for 2D Fighter

09 October 2014 - 11:40 AM

I wrote a 2d fighter engine in SDL when I was in grad. school. If I had to do it again I'd probably choose Cocos2dx for the cross platform abilities. Programming a fighting game engine is easy in OO languages. Netcode for fighting games is another story...

 

Both of those are C++ based, though I think SDL and Cocos2dx may support other languages. Either way, the most important thing in traditional fighting games is 100% consistent frame rate. Honestly out of everything you listed I'd go Unity. It's very easy and will do a lot of the heavy lifting.


In Topic: Corruption in game journalism or just part of business?

11 September 2014 - 10:40 PM

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeff_Gerstmann

 

I mean the free swag isn't the problem, it's the fact that these sites run off of the advertising of the games they review. It's along the lines of politicians getting all their money for the business that rely on their legislation for profits. In a lot of cases reviews are simply another outlet for advertising. Ever notice how many games get 9/10's? I really don't think as an industry we are constantly "hitting it out of the park".

 

Game reviews are a difficult subject. Nothing qualifies you to become a game reviewer and not all game reviewers pour hours into a game before giving their opinion. Don't even get me started on reviews segregated into categories (graphics, gameplay, story, blah blah blah 38/50). What about games that require a specific skill (difficult platforming, very in depth fighting games, etc.)?

 

What I find even more laughable is when my colleagues are hedging whether to buy a game or not based on reviews that they know are in fact paid for.The game has 309123 banner ads, is the background of the website, plays a trailer for the game when you load the website, do you really think their going to give it a 6/10?


In Topic: I want to talk to an indie dev for making one of my game ideas

06 September 2014 - 06:11 PM

...I dont want myself to make the game though...

What? Why would someone make an game for someone who doesn't even want to make it themselves?


In Topic: What's the industry like?

13 August 2014 - 04:56 PM

I've worked on teams ranging from 5-500 and as various programmer and designer positions. The hours vary honestly. I've worked 9-5, 9-7 and 8-6. Crunch can mean anything from 10 hours a day for a week to 80 hours a week for months. Things can get really depressing honestly.

 

Depending on the company you may lose your job at any time. Your team could get shut, the game could get canceled or the company could go under. Everyone has stories of awesome games that never saw the light of day.

 

The money has always been good to me, I have a MS in Computer Science. Comparing to my jobs outside the industry, it only trails a bit.

 

The atmosphere also greatly varies from a hanging with your friends feeling to a everyone getting drilled and turning on each other due to the stress.

 

 

 

The industry can be amazing but it can also be absolutely terrible. It can be creatively fulfilling and soul-sucking. I honestly wouldn't recommend it at this point. The high end of the industry is rough. If you are "considering" it then don't. Try making some indies games and get educated in game development that way.


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