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NeoReality

Average age of Game programmers and the speed of technology

73 posts in this topic

I''ve read a number of posts. A few people have said I''m x years old and I hope I''m not to old to get into the game business. I too have the same fears. I''m 23 years old. Professionally I''ve done quite well. A Programmer of a software house (databases) and if I keep on the same career progression I could be contracting/consulting in a year or two. But I know thats not the career path I want. I know I''ve still got at least one maybe two years worth of learning and experimenting before my skills will be strong enough to sell to Game companies. And through dedication and luck I might get there. But I can''t stop thinking will I be over the hill at 25, and will technology be so advanced that the goal posts have been moved when I get there. So I''m curious. What is the average age here and do people have the same fear that the speed of technology may outrun them? What else do you need; besides a miricle. Money. Lots of Money. or I''ll never do a sequel!
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Well, I''m currently 21 (OK, 20, give or take 12 days or so) but am only into games dev as a hobby atm. I''ve been poking around with graphics and game-effect kinds of things since I was about 12 (BBC Micros rock , have a couple of years of OpenGL, but have only recently started playing with DirectX.

The impression I get is that gamesdev companies *do* prefer younger, fresh talent, although if you can program DirectX/OpenGL in your sleep (if, in fact, you ever get any sleep) and have a bloodstream largely composed of coca-cola and/or coffee, I think you''re basically OK.

*shrug* I''ll be interested to see where this thread goes.


--
I reserve the right to be completely wrong
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I''m 23 at the moment as well, and since I''m doing a PhD at the moment, I won''t be hitting the "industry" until I''m around 27.
It doesn''t really worry me, I think I can keep up with technology. I''m lucky in that the place where I''m working is a university, and they encourage me playing around with things.



#pragma DWIM // Do What I Mean!
~ Mad Keith ~
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I´m 20 and doing graphics and design for various small games as a hobby.

As for the gaming industry ... I´m not so sure. I guess i´ll finish my studies first, and then, armed with at least some knowledge, a university degree and a secure "day job" try if there are more possibilites in the industry.

In austria there aren´t many devellopers/publishers, so i would probably have to move around in the EC, and this is nothing i want at the moment.
And as for skill .... well, gradually increasing but not enough for the tough wide world yet i guess.





"If you know what you want and know what you do best it´s unlikely to fail completely"
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To Parm (and every one else realy)

I''m Kind of a curious to where you found information on programming when you where younger. Parm talks about programming at the age of 12. I started to program at a similar age using a Spectrum +2a.

The thing that stopped me dead in my tracks is I could never find out any information. Oh there where lots of books in the libraries on the theory of computer graphics but not a single one that went beyond print at 20,20 "Goodbye world!"

Its only now, I''ve learnt where to look (which internet sites, books etc) that I''ve been able to start to make programs that actually look like games!


What else do you need; besides a miricle.
Money. Lots of Money. or I''ll never do a sequel!
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I''m 22 and could have entered the industry @ 21.
Will probably enter it this year or next.



-* Sounds, music and story makes the difference between good and great games *-
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I''m currently 28 yrs old and only started game development one year and a half ago. (Started with good general programming skills but little game programming skills, but fortunate enough to know someone in the biz.)

Age requirements are a joke and often a myth. IMO, there is actually a shortage of decent, knowledgeable, professional game developers. If you can show the skills (or even better, a simple demo), I expect you won''t have a problem getting in.

If you want a game prog career track, start acting like a game programmer now while you''re still at a paying job. Read until your brain hurts, start writing sample code until your fingers bleed, talk with amateur and professional developers until your mouth and ears can''t take any more, learn the skills until you have no choice but to change jobs, and play play play games until your brain rots. (The "play games" part is more for research rather than entertainment. When playing, work hard to understand what was done right, what was done wrong, and exactly why the game is or isn''t fun to play.)


---- --- -- -
Blue programmer needs food badly. Blue programmer is about to die!
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I''m 26 and programming for a Credit Union. I was lucky enough to have started programming back in late 1984. Back then, everything you bought showed you how to write a program to use it. When I got my first joystick for my TRS-80, it came with papers that told what memory locations to PEEK to get the different information. (position, button)

Boy I wish I had the internet back then! So many resources!

E:cb woof!
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to NeoReality:

I had the exact same problem...
I was very interessted in programming in the old c64/amiga days.

I tried to learn some amiga assembler and later some pc assembler..But like you I could only find books for beginners...
And I knew nobody that was interessted in the inner workings of computers, so no help there....

Thank god for the interneet...Besides now there´s plenty of books covering C++ and DirectX etc...

Now I´m 25 and I feel I should have been a Guru at this age. But I´m not....




-- There IS something rotten in the state of Denmark --
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I just turned 24 yesterday. Right now I am part of a developing company that makes video gambling machines. It''s as closed to game development as you can get in Tennessee. Hopefully I will have enough skills to get into "real" game development in a couple of years. I do not think I will be considered over the hill at 26.
Later
Eck
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Well, i''m 22 and just graduated with my masters from Berkeley and i''ve got offers out the wazoo from all kinds of companies, including game dev shops. I decided against game dev as a career path because of the huge discrepancy between that and other work that was offering well into the six digit range. I''ll keep it as a hobby for now, maybe I can start my own thing when i''m hmmmmm OLDER. There is nothing wrong with an old game developer. Creativity has no age limit, so I think when we are all older we should show them how full of BS people are for thinking so.
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I''m 15 and working on a 3D adventure game to be published. The lead programmer of the engine is a guy I''m working with in his 20''s. He''s very talented (can whip up a 3D engine single-handedly faster than id or Epic) but he''s never been discovered. I had a vision for a game and he liked it, so we''re hoping we can make ourselves heard in the commercial market.

Basically my point is: Don''t worry about age. The first thing you should focus on is getting jobs and becoming "known" in the industry. Don''t let your talents go to waste just because you couldn''t get a chance to show your stuff. If you''re a great programmer, what does it matter if you''re 18 or 25 or 45?

------------------------------
"You mean I have to be clinically insane to use your bathroom?!"
--Mason Carver, atypical-interactive.com
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I''m 24, and I think we have the perfect age!

We lived to see the computer develop! Starting with the basic stuff - doing things from BASIC to Assembly.

We know things, new people (in 10 years orso) will never experience! They will grow up with almost all game idea''s exploited! They will grow up with a maybe even more advanced languages than C++! Maybe they''ll never see the roots and idea''s the computer today was born from!

Maybe this is a good thing? Maybe NOT!

Maybe we''ll be the brains behind all computer programs, and they new people will be slave implementers!

Time will tell...
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Umm...I''m only 15, but I know quite a bit. I truely love programming, along with girls and hanging out with friends. However, I will NEVER get into the game development industry. Here''s why:

I don''t know about you people, but sometimes in my spare time (once in a blue moon) I watch the MSDN show. Well, all the programmers they talk to are 300 POUNDS OVERWEIGHT. It''s disgusting, makes me wanna barf. These people never rest, never get laid, never exercise, never do ANYTHING!!! Programming''s great as a hobby, I''ll probably churn out a few simple games, but why not pursue a better job where you become exposed to more people and can make more money at once. Very few GAME programmers ever rise to John Carmack status, and most barely make enough to survive. Sure, database and maintenence programmers do well, but game programming, only the best of the best make real money. Alright, sorry for the mini-rant, this is just my opinion. Oh yeah, and check out Sevendust, they are one kick ass band! Denial, best song on the planet (this changes weekly for me) right now!

Ciao
OreoBoy03
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OreoBoy, you don't want to be a game programmer because you're afraid of becomming overweight!? Noone's strapping you to the chair. Many programmers I know are skinny. Look at Bill Gates. Until I got married and my wife started feeding me right, I was well below normal weight. I was almost too low. 6'3", 147 lbs.

E:cb woof!

Edited by - dog135 on May 31, 2000 6:56:59 PM
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Your age doesn''t make a damn bit of a difference. It does when you''re 60, but not when u''re 25. 25 is perfect. And if you''re good enough, technology will never outrun you, because you''re gonna be the one creating it.
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Dog, I think I mentioned exercise. It seems to me that all programmers are either grossly under- or over- weight, and I haven''t even heard of a "buff" programmer yet! and, unlesss programmers are married, they NEVER GET LAID!!! I would die a slow miserable death!!! Of course, sex and programmers could make a whole new thread...
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OH MY GOD! I'm so sorry guys, I didn't mean to multiple post, but my net hung and i got pissed and clicked on reply a million times cuz i didn't think it was working. I'm so sorry!

E: Sorry guys, I just found out how to delete and edit messages, so I deleted the duplicates, don't think I'm crazy or dillusional. And hey, thanks to those duplicates, I just rose to rank of DEDICATED! I'M SO HAPPY! Time to throw a block party Gotta run, I gotta party to plan, catcha later.

Edited by - OreoBoy03 on May 31, 2000 7:52:02 PM

Edited by - OreoBoy03 on May 31, 2000 7:53:10 PM
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OreoBoy, you are pretty funny. There is nothing stopping those programmers (or you if you become one of them) from going to the gym. Personally, when I get into the game development business, I will make sure I go to the gym every day (or every other day), even if I have to in the middle of the night. I don''t believe in getting grossly obese, or being grossly underweight.

-Andreas
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There is an MSDN show!
I''m quite lucky living in England. We missout on seriously corperate sponsored air time. (it''s getting worst though)
What do they do on it. Is it like a Micro$oft sponsored shopping channel. "Buy windows 2000, because even though NT4 will do every thing you required we want more of your money. Buy Windows 2000, buy it because we''ll give you no other choice!"
Obeasity.
OreoBoy, Yes there are a lot of people who live and breath programming to the point of giving up their own bodies. But I know a number of hardcore coders who follow the whole Body is a temple thing and/or get (or attempt to get) laid every week.
There is no reason you can''t have best of both worlds. You can party, drag your self into work on 1/2 hour sleep. Drink a gallon of coffee and get coding on the lastest greatest FPS.
There are boundries though. I''ve been with my partner 4 years, we''re expecting our first kid in 3 months, and we''ve got the mortgage thing! I''m the sole bread winner, so any choices I make I''ve got to work through her.
I know I do not want to be doing database for the rest of my working life, and I know the game industry requires a lot of work, a lot of overtime and late nights. The ballencing act is going to be a tricky job but worth it.
OreoBoy I ask you this, what job would you WANT to be doing?

PS: If you are free and single move forward as quickly as you can, but if the right person comes along drop every thing, you might not see them again!


What else do you need; besides a miricle.
Money. Lots of Money. or I''ll never do a sequel!
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I''m 15, and I''m unsure of whether I want in on the industry.
I''m making a game as a hobby and it''s pretty cool. I know it is less than what I am capable of but it''s still a learning experience as it''s the first game I''m going to finish.
I started programming when I was 10 and used good ol'' Qbasic. I finished a few simple games but the more major ones never quite finished, basically because I taught myself, and got myself some bad habits - no comments, no subs, no functions.
I had no books and the only way I could learn was through the help file. It was suprisingly good and that way I learnt heaps. I made my own graphics program because I didn''t know how to load bmps and all my games were without mouse (becuase I couldn''t figure any of that out) and without sound (the little speaker inside the computer is best left silent)
Now I''ve rid myself of all (most) of my bad habits and hopefully things should turn out fine.
Did anyone really want to know my life story

"Only a fool quotes himself"
Andy Owen

My Homepage (Non games related)
My Current Project (Games related... I think)
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I''m 16 and I''ve been programming for roughly 4 years. I started on QBASIC, but now I''m doing a bit of DirectX/Windows stuff in C++. I don''t know if game programming will be my career, I''m just gonna finish school and figure it out when I get there
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It seems to me that everybody here (with a few exceptions) are not game developers but somebody that wants to be game developers. This is a shame.

How do we make more professoinal people join this forum? If there is anybody out there please respond.

Jacob Marner

PS: By professional I mean: "You have a full time job where you get paid and you live of this pay."
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