I wasn't sure if I should make this here or in the 'For Beginners' forum. Basically, I'm planning on purchasing the Game Institute package, but there's one problem: they use 3ds Max and Photoshop in their tutorials for the 'Game Art and Animation' lessons. I can't afford one of those, let alone both. I asked a representative and he said it's possible to follow along with different programs, but difficult. So my question for you guys is: can I follow their tutorials using Blender and Gimp? I know I can look up tutorials for both online, but I don't want to pay for the lessons and not take advantage of them.
Here's a link to the website: http://www.gameinstitute.com/game-development/game-design.php
Thanks in advance.
So buy a service that provides you with all. I use digital tutors and they give you full access to well over 200+ forms of software. They have learning lessons for all areas and are fairly cheap considering what they offer. This is where I learned most of my animation skills and this was from me knowing NOTHING about maya. I am by no means a god at animation now but I can certainly hold my own with some of the industry vets. I have even used some of their advanced tutorials for learning some stuff I never imagined about photoshop and other tools I have been using for 10+ years.
Honestly, I don't think developing a quality game is as difficult as people make it out to be. Yes, it's hard and takes work, not to mention skill, but with the access we have (for example, the Unity Asset Store), the development process is a good deal easier. But as I said, you still need skill (and money). For somebody like me, who will probably have to work as a one-man team, something like the Asset Store will be extremely useful.
While you make some good points it is key to note that making a game using EXISTING engines is not hard. Unity is very robust and does most of the heavy lifting for you. Try making a game yourself from the ground up and you will find a much different story. Not that I would urge anybody to do that, just wanted to make what you were saying clear.