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cloudstrifehammy

Absolute Beginner...

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I'd like to start off saying that I did read through the "For Beginners" section and a few of the FAQ... and honestly they just gave me more questions than the ones I started out with. I don't have any type of experience in designing, coding, etc. I'm generally good with computers, but only with the basics, such as using programs and dealing with files and the like, which I'm pretty sure won't come in too handy in thise case anyway. I'm basically interested in becoming a video game designer, seeing as I'm obsessed with console games, such as games for the PS2, Wii, etc. But that is a future goal, not something I have in mind on doing right now. For starters, I'd like to say that I'm only 17, will be 18 in November, and I'm in my senior year of High School. I realize I'm a bit late to begin studying code and what not, but I believe I will be able to do whatever I put my mind to. As for my math classes, I have taken Algebra I and II and I have also taken Geometry and am in the process of taking Pre-Calculus. My weakes subject would have to be Geometry, although I know I can get better at it with practice and dedication. I'm pretty good with Algebra, and I'm still starting out Pre-Calculus... so we'll see how that works out for me. A major worry that I have is where I should go to study. I read the "schools and training" area of this website, but it didn't completely answer my question. I had my sight set out for Savannah College of Art and Design, since I was told it was one of the best in game development, but I'm not too sure about that, not to mention it's a 4 year course and it is approx. $42,000 per year, for dorms and what not. Seeing as I live in Puerto Rico presently, I figured I'd need to take up a dorm, since I also don't have any family members or friends that live anywhere relatively close to that College. I was also told that Full-Sail in Winter Park, FL was a great college for this as well. My father lives in Florida, although he lives in Poinceana, (I'm not too sure if they are anywhere near each other... I'm not too familiar with the geography of Florida, or any other place for that matter...) So that might also be an option. Any other universities that you guys may refer would be more than welcome. I did download the RPG Toolkit 3.1.0 (I think that's the version I have...) and I managed to finish the tutorial area of the Toolkit, but it didn't really help much, and I still haven't been able to successfully complete a game... (I haven't really given it much time, but oh well.) If there is anything you can help me out with, I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks for reading, I know I have written a lot, but I have a lot of worries and doubts in this industry.

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Clo, you wrote:
>A major worry that I have is where I should go to study.

Wherever you want -- or are able to. Seriously. Just get whatever education you can, in whatever subject interests you.

>I had my sight set out for Savannah College of Art and Design, since I was told it was one of the best in game development, but I'm not too sure about that,

Unclear what you mean -- why you're "not too sure." It doesn't matter if it's "one of the best" or not. It's perfectly OK to go there, if you're artistically inclined (it's an art school).

>not to mention it's a 4 year course and it is approx. $42,000 per year, for dorms and what not.

Four years is what it takes. If the tuition is too high, go somewhere you can afford.

>I was also told that Full-Sail in Winter Park, FL was a great college for this as well.

Is that one any cheaper? You have to research schools in your budget range.

>My father lives in Florida, although he lives in Poinceana, (I'm not too sure if they are anywhere near each other...

So you never heard of Mapquest or Google Maps or Yahoo Maps??

>Any other universities that you guys may refer would be more than welcome.

Broken record time: go to any school you can afford that offers subjects that interest you.

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Quote:
Original post by cloudstrifehammy
A major worry that I have is where I should go to study. I read the "schools and training" area of this website, but it didn't completely answer my question. I had my sight set out for Savannah College of Art and Design, since I was told it was one of the best in game development, but I'm not too sure about that, not to mention it's a 4 year course and it is approx. $42,000 per year, for dorms and what not. Seeing as I live in Puerto Rico presently, I figured I'd need to take up a dorm, since I also don't have any family members or friends that live anywhere relatively close to that College. I was also told that Full-Sail in Winter Park, FL was a great college for this as well. My father lives in Florida, although he lives in Poinceana, (I'm not too sure if they are anywhere near each other... I'm not too familiar with the geography of Florida, or any other place for that matter...) So that might also be an option. Any other universities that you guys may refer would be more than welcome.


I would not advise going for a video game specific degree. They are very focused and really aren't that respected in comparison to a computer science or computer engineering degree. I would recommend going to a engineering school for a computer engineering degree. I recommend this for a few reasons:
1. It is more respected
2. You should always shoot for your dreams, but not everyone gets to be a game developer. Game dev is the hardest end of programming and they arent always paid the best. You need to take into account the possibility that you may (for any reason) not be into game development.

When it comes down to it, the industry cares more about experience. Go on a job search, you will not find many programming jobs that absolutely require a degree. I do not know if this applies to the game development industry.

Quote:
Original post by cloudstrifehammy
I did download the RPG Toolkit 3.1.0 (I think that's the version I have...) and I managed to finish the tutorial area of the Toolkit, but it didn't really help much, and I still haven't been able to successfully complete a game... (I haven't really given it much time, but oh well.)


Dont waste your time on game creators.

Quote:
Original post by cloudstrifehammy
If there is anything you can help me out with, I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks for reading, I know I have written a lot, but I have a lot of worries and doubts in this industry.


I am still not sure exactly what you are asking.

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Well, I have many questions, that's the problem. Lol

But you generally answered most of the doubts I had, so thanks for that. I have to admit, I'm not as interested as I was before in video game designing after reading this. ^^; I never was 100% sure that it was the thing for me, I mean, I love video games, but playing them and creating them are two totally different things.

I realize this is a bit out of topic because it doesn't have much to do with development... but what if I were to want to be in the storyboard department of a console video game, such as the storyboard for RPGs and wht not? What would I have to do for that? As in... what do I have to study? What should I know? Do I have any chance to get into the big leagues, meaning Square Enix and other big companies like that?

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Original post by cloudstrifehammy
But you generally answered most of the doubts I had, so thanks for that. I have to admit, I'm not as interested as I was before in video game designing after reading this. ^^; I never was 100% sure that it was the thing for me, I mean, I love video games, but playing them and creating them are two totally different things.

The various aspects of game development, like any other professional career fields, require a lot of time and dedication. You're quite right that playing games and developing them are very different. The sad thing is that some people will actually make it all the way through school, get a job in the industry, and THEN discover that developing games isn't something they're really cut out for. I think it is fun and worth it, but your mileage will vary [wink]

Quote:
I realize this is a bit out of topic because it doesn't have much to do with development... but what if I were to want to be in the storyboard department of a console video game, such as the storyboard for RPGs and wht not? What would I have to do for that? As in... what do I have to study? What should I know? Do I have any chance to get into the big leagues, meaning Square Enix and other big companies like that?

How does this not have much to do with development? Every company with a proper preproduction process has a need for storyboard artists. If this interests you then study art, do some storyboarding, and develop a portfolio. A lot of schools with art programs will have storyboarding related classes because they are so essential for preproduction of practically all types of media, from film to TV commercials to TV shows to videogames to scientific visualization and more.

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Original post by cloudstrifehammy
what if I were to want to be in the storyboard department of a console video game, such as the storyboard for RPGs and wht not? What would I have to do for that? As in... what do I have to study? What should I know? Do I have any chance to get into the big leagues, meaning Square Enix and other big companies like that?

As Adrian said, to become a storyboard artist you'd have to study art. Are you artistic? If so, art would be a good direction for you.
As for your last question, anything is possible if you work for it.
http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson7.htm
http://www.sloperama.com/advice/designprep.htm
http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson50.htm
http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson25.htm
http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson34.htm
http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson44.htm
http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson53.htm

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Quote:
Originally posted by VillageIdiot
Dont waste your time on game creators.


I don't think that game creators are a waste of time at all - and doubly so if your interest lies more in game design than game programming. In fact, I think that some - such as Game Maker (Wikipedia's page on Game Maker is probably also a good place to look for information on that product, I think) - are probably rather good options, providing the ability to create good games (and I have seen some good games come out of Game Maker, as I recall) with what seems to be relatively little programming knowledge.

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Quote:
Original post by VillageIdiot
Dont waste your time on game creators.

I missed this part. This is horrible advice. If someone has no interest in programming then it makes a whole lot of sense to use a tool that will handle that end of development for you.

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Well first of all I'd like to say thanks for all your help.

I'm not TOO artistic, I mean I can draw fairly well, but I can only draw things that I have right in front of me, nothing that comes from my mind ever comes out well. Although I do write a lot, and I do like writing stories and what not. Other than that, I'm not too sure about any other artistic qualities that I may have...

And another thing I'd like to clear up, or rather say, ask, I'm not really into programming... I'm more into the designing area. I guess I should have cleared that up first, but I didn't really realize the huge difference that there was between the two.

If it's not too much trouble, could one of you tell me a little more about what the designing area specializes in? What they do? Etc.

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Cloud,
You really need to read those articles I posted URLs for above.
Sorry they aren't all linkable.
The answers you seek are given in those articles. There's no reason why we should have to type those answers all over again just for this thread.

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