Jump to content
  • Advertisement
Sign in to follow this  
Screech

High School Senior looking to become a game developer

This topic is 594 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

If you intended to correct an error in the post then please contact us.

Recommended Posts

Hello I am a high school senior who is taking dual-enrollment classes and plan on majoring in Computer Science next year at my community college, I have a few questions ?

 

1. What is the best program to get a basic feel for C# and C++ that is free to get a head start ?

 

2. I plan on getting an associates degree but is it worth it to continue my education in any way ?

 

3. Should I start my own company or get employed by one after college ?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Advertisement

Okay, coming from a Computer Science major with a bachelor's degree and an Associates degree--

 

The game industry is brutal. It's the glam job of the programming world that's not so glamorous when you're in it working mandatory overtime. I ended up spending all my professional, employed time programming web dev stuff outside of the game industry, and by the time I got out of that (four years later) I couldn't even remember a time that I had fun with code. I'm doing indie game development now (C# with the Unity Engine), but the only reason I have the time is because I'm sick with a chronic illness that wouldn't let me work a 'normal job' anyway.

 

As far as the degrees go-- at this point, I'm not sure they're worth it. I never did anything with my AA, and the bachelor's is nice... but the more American education bubbles, the less I believe in it. On the other hand, we're living in an age of unparalleled, free information. So... if you are able to learn on your own without a class, you might consider saving your money and learning on your own. Game development is one of those things you can prove with a well built project in your portfolio instead of a fancy looking degree.

 

As for the head start? Grab an engine and start making games. My first try was a quidditch game I made back in 1998 in Visual Basic and MS Paint bitmaps (needless to say, it was terrible, but even then, XP is XP). Grab the Unreal Engine or the Unity Engine, sketch out a very, very simple goal, and start working. Grab some free creative commons art and try to make pong. Your first games will be awful. Make them anyway, toss them over your shoulder, and don't look back.

Edited by Eliza

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2. I plan on getting an associates degree but is it worth it to continue my education in any way ?
3. Should I start my own company or get employed by one after college ?


2. Don't stop with the Associates degree. Employers aren't impressed by a mere Associates degree. Read these:
http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson27.htm
http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson24.htm

3. You should not start your own company until you have gained experience, contacts, and money. Read this:
http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson29.htm

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@[member='Tom Sloper'], Hit these things right on the head!

Don't stop with the Associates degree. Employers aren't impressed by a mere Associates degree.

A 4 year degree shows you can complete something long with a ton of stress attached. 

 

You should not start your own company until you have gained experience, contacts, and money.

Between contracts, bills, and taxes starting a company out the door can be a major problem. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello I am a high school senior who is taking dual-enrollment classes and plan on majoring in Computer Science next year at my community college, I have a few questions ?

 

1. What is the best program to get a basic feel for C# and C++ that is free to get a head start ?

 

2. I plan on getting an associates degree but is it worth it to continue my education in any way ?

 

3. Should I start my own company or get employed by one after college ?

I had the same question when I was a high school senior. I was so desperate I even emailed several game companies with this set of questions. Here is the response I got from Zenimax/Bethesda

 

"Hi. Generally speaking, we look for people who are good at what they do (ie, programming or art or design) and have some combination of educational background and work experience, along with examples of work they've done in gaming. So, not only do we want good programmers/artists/designers, but we want programmers/artists/designers that have examples of mods or plugins or game-related things they've done on their own that show us they "get" what it is we do here.
        
        There's no magic degree, or school, or number of years of experience that we're necessarily looking for or need. The requirements for each job we're currently hiring for will give you an idea on a position-by-position basis of what kinds of things we look for"

 

So, I hope this helps to answer questions 2 and 3.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Since the majority of the thread is career-oriented rather than technical, I'm moving the
thread to Game Industry Job Advice. Screech, you should re-ask your technical question (by
itself, without questions on non-programming topics) in the For Beginners forum.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As for the head start? Grab an engine and start making games. My first try was a quidditch game I made back in 1998 in Visual Basic and MS Paint bitmaps (needless to say, it was terrible, but even then, XP is XP). Grab the Unreal Engine or the Unity Engine, sketch out a very, very simple goal, and start working. Grab some free creative commons art and try to make pong. Your first games will be awful. Make them anyway, toss them over your shoulder, and don't look back.

 

I love this, as with many crafts it's best to just jump in and learn as you go. I recorded four albums before I started becoming proud of my work

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would say pick up and engine like Unreal Engine 4 and start working, maybe even find a development team to work with online and work together to fulfill a common goal. You can do this while you are in school and make money in the process. Just keep at it!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Advertisement
×

Important Information

By using GameDev.net, you agree to our community Guidelines, Terms of Use, and Privacy Policy.

We are the game development community.

Whether you are an indie, hobbyist, AAA developer, or just trying to learn, GameDev.net is the place for you to learn, share, and connect with the games industry. Learn more About Us or sign up!

Sign me up!