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rarse

Game Programming Courses?

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Hi. I have been considering signing up for one of the courses from http://www.gameinstitute.com Anyone here had similar thoughts? Anyone tried the above site? Any other advice or tips? Thanks!

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I don't think those courses are worth anything. They seem to be geared primarily towards learning the hot, new technology (i.e., whatever buzzwords are currently in vogue) rather than imparting a knowledge of fundamentals and background.

They are no subsitute for a real education. If you want to pay for them as a way to help augment your education, that's fine, but in my opinion as a professional, they are worthless.

How old are you? What is your current educational level and background?

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I couldn't agree more with what the above poster said. Having a firm grasp of the background and theory of what you are doing through formal education will allow you to learn the new stuff without an extreme amount of hassle.

Once you have the basics down then if you want to try the Game Institute, you are welcome to it. Personally if I saw someone had graduated from the "Game Institute" over someone who has graduated from a credited computer science program at a university, I would be more inclined to hire/work with the person who graduated from a university.

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I do not know much about that school specifically so I really can’t give you any direct advice but I can give you some general advice. When looking at a prospective school you should research each school individually. Do your research on a school by school basis. Don’t rule something out just because your not there for 4 years.

There are a lot of people out there who swear that only 4 year schools can produce good game programmers but this is not true. There are schools with game specific programs that give a good education for people who want to work in the game industry, however there are also school that have sprouted up and aren’t teaching much useful.

Many game specific programs teach things that you will not learn from a traditional CS degree. There are a lot of technologies and methods that are used very commonly in games that will not be covered or will only be touched upon by a traditional CS program.

However if you are not sure you want to be in the game industry specifically you may want to got with a traditional CS program because you have more options available to you after graduation. They teach things that are very common in the business world that would only be touched upon in a game program.

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I think what is your goal is a more important question. I plan on taking some of the game institute courses, but programming games is a hobby and I'm not planning on becoming a professonial.

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I tried it. I liked it for the most part, but there isn't anything there that you couldn't find in a bookstore. The best part is that the teachers usually respond quickly to any questions you've got. You can also download lectures and they have live chats once a week, I think. You also get course work and tests. But I think they are a weak point and something that really needs to be reworked and made more comprehensive and robust. The community over there is pretty decent. Oh, and another plus is that you can get actual, physical, Real Life(tm) textbooks and they come with a CD that contains all the lectures and whatever extras that are available for that course. Or you can download all that stuff. But never underestimate the usefulness of a book that you can hold in you own hands.

Also, unless you bought Visual C++ you will have trouble in some chapters of the 2nd C++ course. If you are using Dev-C++ or VC++ Express Edition (VC++ EE is highly, highly recommended), you will need to idependently learn how to make resources such as dialog boxes, menus, etc. manually. I had an easy time of it because I had already taught myself before I even took the course.

My biggest criticism of gameinstitute is that it would sometimes devolve into code on a platter.

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