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todesangst

conflict between two video game grad schools

8 posts in this topic

I'm a CS graduate who always have wanted to work in a company that makes AAA video games. My goal after that is to be an indie game developer. I have applied to some grad schools that teaches how to make video games and just got accepted from CMU ETC(Entertainment Technology Center http://www.etc.cmu.edu) and UofU EAE (Entertainment Arts and Engineering http://eae.utah.edu/).

I assume while UofU has a really good core curriculum about designing and building a game engine from scratch, CMU is more focused on designing creative stuff using tools like Panda3D or Unity3D.
It seems obvious that I can be a real specialist in UofU EAE, but the reputation of Carnegie Mellon University and rumors about Salt Lake City's boring atmosphere makes me agonize. Any advice?
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rumors about Salt Lake City's boring atmosphere makes me agonize

 

If you're serious about studying, this shouldn't be an issue.

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Moving to Breaking In forum.

 

Now that it is in the right place, please read the Forum FAQ.

 

Pay special attention to details about decision grids and asking if graduate studies are right for you.  (Hint: if you are doing it because you want to know stuff, probably good; if you are doing it to get a job, probably bad.)

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Also, as a long-time resident of Salt Lake City, I can probably answer quite a few questions.

 

Probably among the biggest myth is that supposedly SLC has nowhere to drink. Of course, this assumes you are at least 21. If you look up the building for EA Salt Lake, just walking around the block gives you Junior's Tavern, Circle Lounge, Cheers to You, and the Green Pig Pub. Quite a few of the developers visit Junior's every Friday afternoon, some hit The Green Pig for lunch, so come say "Hi" some afternoon after class.  There is a Trax station (the light rail system) is right there at the corner, although if you are coming from the U you'll want to take the station one block away ("Courthouse Station") and walk north a block, since the University line turns and runs south when it hits Main street.

 

Most trains stop around 11:00, but you have school in the morning anyway.

 

It is not a party school, but neither is Carnegie-Mellon. There is plenty of stuff to do when you aren't working on your homework or thesis. Organized sports teams beyond the college level include basketball, soccer, football (I've seen the Blaze team several times at the cheesesteak shop across the street from EA), baseball, hockey, and other major sports teams exist. If you are in to the Greek fraternities scene you might check out the U's "Frat Row" if you want to know about some events, but most students are there for academics rather than the parties. I used to get student discounts for the Utah Symphony, attended several shows like Les Mis and Phantom when they toured, and enjoyed quite a few shows at the Off Broadway Theatre that has a steady stream of spoofs.

 

The LDS Church is centered there with Temple Square right in the numeric center of the city. (The city mostly uses a grid pattern, the corner of North Temple and Main is (0,0) for the numbers.) There are free concerts, organ recitals, choir performances, plays, and other events every few days in several historic buildings on the site. There are malls right across the street with a food court so it makes for a good cheap date if any of those are your thing and you don't want to pay the $10-$20 student rates at the symphony or other venues.

 

Once you graduate, you've got a reasonably big collection of local studios.  EA Salt Lake, Disney Salt Lake, ChAIR (a studio of Epic Games), plus a handful of smaller studios all call Salt Lake City their home.

Edited by frob
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rumors about Salt Lake City's boring atmosphere makes me agonize

 

If you're serious about studying, this shouldn't be an issue.

 

You're right. I just wished there would be a club I can go like once a quarter.

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Moving to Breaking In forum.

 

Now that it is in the right place, please read the Forum FAQ.

 

Pay special attention to details about decision grids and asking if graduate studies are right for you.  (Hint: if you are doing it because you want to know stuff, probably good; if you are doing it to get a job, probably bad.)

 

Oh, sorry. My bad. And thanks.
 

You're absolutely right about graduate studies. But here's the thing: Since I'm not an American, I thought grad study will help me grasp a chance to get a job in US game industry (video game industry in my country is quite lame). ETC and EAE has got some connection with EA. So.. it's basically a bad idea, but the least bad idea, I thought.

 

On the other hand, there is a purpose of knowing stuff too: I want an ability to build my own game engine but it feels overwhelming to me designing a huge system for now. UofU EAE program especially says that they teaches how to build a sound game engine over 3 semesters.

Edited by CourageDigital
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It is not a party school, but neither is Carnegie-Mellon.

Thank you so much for the vast amount of information. I don't think I would have time for parties, but it wouldn't hurt if I could smell of it before I leave US someday. 

 

 


I used to get student discounts for the Utah Symphony, attended several shows like Les Mis and Phantom when they toured, and enjoyed quite a few shows at the Off Broadway Theatre that has a steady stream of spoofs.

It sounds awesome. Would there be some underground music scene(like live clubs) too? If so, I think it will light up my stay since I love rock and electronic(Glitch hop nowadays)  music. I've been playing electric guitar for over 10 years and currently working in a software synthesizer company. It will be stunning if I could play in a band.

 

 

 


Quite a few of the developers visit Junior's every Friday afternoon, some hit The Green Pig for lunch, so come say "Hi" some afternoon after class.

I definitely want to! Don't know why but strangely I feel like I could possibly notice you.

Edited by CourageDigital
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It sounds awesome. Would there be some underground music scene(like live clubs) too? If so, I think it will light up my stay since I love rock and electronic(Glitch hop nowadays)  music. I've been playing electric guitar for over 10 years and currently working in a software synthesizer company. It will be stunning if I could play in a band.

A few clubs, groups, and events, yes. 

 

The Salt Lake metro area has over a million people. If you include the entire Wasatch front (all the bedroom communities and smaller cities squished between the Wasatch mountains on the East and lakes and mountains on the West) it is over 2 million people. The Wasatch front is only about 15 miles wide and about 100 miles tall. The limited available land serves to increase population density.

 

Consequently you can find just about anything a city that size has to offer. For the very few things you cannot get (e.g. organized gambling is illegal in the state) it takes about 1.5 hours to get to Wendover, Nevada.

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It sounds awesome. Would there be some underground music scene(like live clubs) too? If so, I think it will light up my stay since I love rock and electronic(Glitch hop nowadays)  music. I've been playing electric guitar for over 10 years and currently working in a software synthesizer company. It will be stunning if I could play in a band.

A few clubs, groups, and events, yes. 

 

The Salt Lake metro area has over a million people. If you include the entire Wasatch front (all the bedroom communities and smaller cities squished between the Wasatch mountains on the East and lakes and mountains on the West) it is over 2 million people. The Wasatch front is only about 15 miles wide and about 100 miles tall. The limited available land serves to increase population density.

 

Consequently you can find just about anything a city that size has to offer. For the very few things you cannot get (e.g. organized gambling is illegal in the state) it takes about 1.5 hours to get to Wendover, Nevada.

 

 

Well it sounds it's a great place to live in. I think the liquor law scared me a bit. Thank you for your epic reply. Hope to see you when I get there.

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