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johnnyMakesGames

Are there different kinds of game schools?

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I have seen various courses for game development and they are across the board. I've seen games from scratch with language and framework x, games with game maker, flash, and more complex game courses that would use something like gamestudio, torque or unity for 3d games. What is a "real" game course? What should it have? Does it just depend upon what you want to do? Is learning to make games with a tool, learning modeling, and basic scripting for Unity 3d a real game course? Can someone claim they make games if they only use a tool but don't know what a game loop is? is learning about a game loop, etc. the real class? Something else? Was hoping for thoughts on the subject. Thank you. Edit: This is based on the premise that college is not an option. For example, high school kids or younger that want to make games but are not college age.

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If you've read articles from Tom Sloper on his website (sloperama.com) IIRC he recommends going to a four-year college and then going to a game school. He's a vet of the field, so I'd probably take his advice. Not trying to put words in his mouth, though, go check for yourself.

Most game schools have specializations. Digital Arts, Animation, Music Business, etc. Check out Full Sail University.

http://www.fullsail.edu/

As for what they use, I've seen one that has courses in specifically Directx for programming.

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If you're going to school to learn how to make games, I assume your goal is to get a job at the end.

Games companies don't hire "all round developers". One guy doesn't use a modelling tool AND write game loops. So if there is a course that teaches you how to do all of these things, it's not going to turn you into a professional "game developer" -- it'd just be more of an introduction to the different paths out there.
Quote:
Original post by johnnyMakesGames
Can someone claim they make games if they only use a tool but don't know what a game loop is?
Can Spielberg claim he makes films if he (almost) never acts in them, or doesn't know how to operate the sound board, or tape up lights, or cut the film, or build the props?
Games, just like films, require a huge range of different talents to create the final product -- all of those people who just do their bit can say they made it.

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Quote:
Original post by Hodgman
If you're going to school to learn how to make games, I assume your goal is to get a job at the end.

Games companies don't hire "all round developers". One guy doesn't use a modelling tool AND write game loops. So if there is a course that teaches you how to do all of these things, it's not going to turn you into a professional "game developer" -- it'd just be more of an introduction to the different paths out there.
Quote:
Original post by johnnyMakesGames
Can someone claim they make games if they only use a tool but don't know what a game loop is?
Can Spielberg claim he makes films if he (almost) never acts in them, or doesn't know how to operate the sound board, or tape up lights, or cut the film, or build the props?
Games, just like films, require a huge range of different talents to create the final product -- all of those people who just do their bit can say they made it.


Thank you. I never thought about it like that. I am guessing the answer is yes. Speilberg can direct but not run the soundboard! Nor did I realize the thing about jack of all trades developers.

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Quote:
Original post by johnnyMakesGames
0. Are there different kinds of game schools?
1. What is a "real" game course? What should it have? Does it just depend upon what you want to do?
2. This is based on the premise that college is not an option. For example, high school kids or younger that want to make games but are not college age.

0. Yes. There are game art schools and there are game programming schools, for instance.
1. Yes. Don't take a game art course if you're hopelessly untalented artistically.
Don't take a game programming course if you're hopelessly technically challenged.
http://sloperama.com/advice/lesson34.htm
2. Huh? Please explain. Edit: are you asking if there are pre-college game schools (game schools for high-schoolers)?

[Edited by - Tom Sloper on February 23, 2010 3:48:03 PM]

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Original post by johnnyMakesGames
Edit: This is based on the premise that college is not an option. For example, high school kids or younger that want to make games but are not college age.

Some high schools offer courses related to game development, but finding a game development class outside of college is not likely. Most colleges don't even have game development courses. If you can't attend a game development college, you're going to have to find game development tutorials on the web or go to a library and check out books and teach yourself how to do what you want.

GDNet's own articles section is a great place to start.

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