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happybirthday

What is Expected from a Portfolio

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happybirthday    100
Hello everyone,

I am trying to break into the Game Industry and so needed some advice on how to go about.
Being from India it's already pretty tough out here and so any push in the right direction would be highly appreciated.

I want to be a Game Programmer .. Preferably a Physics or AI Programmer.

My question is what kind of a portfolio game should I develop so that I can attract the attention of the industry. Does my game need to be good in all the aspects of the game like modelling, rendering, game play, script, and of course physics and AI or should I just concentrate on these 2 aspects and let the other parts dangling ?
If the answer is it should be good in all the fields .. then i need some solid advice on how to go about cause I am a single person and how should I manage everything ? (This question specifically targeted to all the Indie Developers out there)
and otherwise also i need advice on the kind of game its genre etc. i should develop for my portfolio game.

Thanks a lot :)

P.S My dream is to get an Internship in EA Games :D

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Hodgman    51222
If you want to be a physics programmer, your portfolio should show some cool physics. Like your own rigid body system dealing with hundreds of stacked boxes, or a car with pacejka friction, etc..
It doesn't matter how it looks as long as you can easily explain the cool physics that's going on.

If you want to be an AI programmer, your portfolio should show some cool AI. Like two teams of cooperating agents using a pathfinder and a planner to work against each other towards some goal.
It doesn't matter how it looks as long as you can easily explain the cool AI that's going on.

If you want to get in to a AAA company like EA, then your portfolio better show something that's as advanced as current tech is. Don't just show a 'stacked boxes' demo built on top of PhysX, or some agents navigating via your own A* implementation -- find something that makes you seem passionate about becoming an expert in your field.

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Impervious    1222
I will have to agree with Hodgman simply based off what I have heard in the past. You want to show that you can do what they are hiring you to do well. Focusing on something like graphics should not be essential, though I can only imagine it would help give a better impression.

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frob    44904
[quote name='HappyBirthday' timestamp='1306296930' post='4815437']
I am trying to break into the Game Industry ...
I want to be a Game Programmer .. Preferably a Physics or AI Programmer. ...
My question is what kind of a portfolio game should I develop so that I can attract the attention of the industry. ...
otherwise also i need advice on the kind of game its genre etc. i should develop for my portfolio game.
My dream is to get an Internship ...
[/quote]

As an intern game programmer you will probably not be put in to the physics or AI, more likely you will be assigned as a rank-and-file general gameplay programmer, or find your time spent on tools or other gruntwork.

A portfolio is evidence that you can do the job well. That's it.

Only consider it a portfolio piece if it shows that you can do the job well.

For programming there are no requirements for types of items to have in a portfolio. Unlike artists and modelers, there is often no requirement that you have a portfolio at all. If you choose to show something or give it to the interview, make sure the items are complete and provide good evidence that you understand the field and can do the job well.

There are very few things you "should" have. Your items should be complete and ready to run. It should run with just a single click or run directly on a web page with no plugins if it is a movie or web game. It should not need an install, although there are exceptions; I've seen some senior projects that were amazing games in the 50-200MB range that required an install and were worth it. If your portfolio is half-finished pieces that crash frequently or require multiple install steps, it shows that you either don't understand the industry and its customers, or perhaps that you fail to understand or perform what is required to make a game. Otherwise, it is entirely up to you.

Nobody but you knows the projects you have done or knows what you want to do, so it follows that only you can figure out what you have done that best shows off your abilities.

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