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Networking in Gaming Community

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To briefly introduce myself, I am a new member of this community who recently set a new career path to become a game developer/programmer. I currently major in Computer Science at an online university due to my current full time occupation. Internet provided pretty much everything I needed to know to get a kick start on this career, from different programming languages and their uses, different learning resources ranging from beginner level to expert, to basically the outlook of this career path. From what I have read, it's a very competitive and risky, but a rewarding job. Kind of job you have a chance in surviving only if you are truly passionate. I am no genius, so I am gonna have to work my butt off for the next few years to earn a degree and acquire the necessary knowledge and experience to be even considered in this harsh industry.  

Now! There is one thing I could not find. Networking in gaming community. I found gamedev.net, but as someone so inexperienced in online communities and social media, I need some guidance. For those of you who know or have experience in this area, what are some ways to start networking in the gaming community? I would greatly appreciate your opinion and thanks!


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2 minutes ago, lesgle said:

what are some ways to start networking in the gaming community?

One way is to join the IGDA and participate in local chapter meetups. If there's no chapter in your area, you could start one. https://www.igda.org/default.aspx

There may be other game dev meetups, or just creative meetups you can attend. Keep an eye out on announcements here on gamedev.net but also check gamasutra.com and kotaku.com and gamesindustry.biz for possible announcements. 

In addition, there are conferences, trade shows, etc. Those may involve travel costs and attendance costs. Whether those are right for you depends on your financial situation and also on your location. 

How to network when you go to an event? See http://sloperama.com/advice/lesson54.htm

BTW, your thread has been moved to the Career Advice forum.Have a look at other topics here in this forum - you may find more info on your question.

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In addition to Tom's excellent advice...

Once you're comfortable that you have a basic level of skills in place you could try participating in some game jams.  These are challenges where people try to make games matching some theme or specific restrictions, usually within a limited time frame.  Most jams are very welcoming of beginners, and due to the nature of the challenge expectations for quality are often lower. It's common that participants will interact with each other throughout and after a jam, so they're a great way to get to know some fellow developers whilst also practicing your craft.

Some jams are attended in person (like the very popular annual Global Game Jam) and many others are online (like Ludum Dare, or our very own still-quite-new GameDev Challenges).  There are loads of jams to choose from.


Online, start forming relationships by getting active in communities like this one. Write and publish articles to share what you've learned. Spend some time responding to forum posts. Open source some sample code, or contribute to existing open source projects. Engage with others on Twitter if that's your thing.

Most people agree that the best way to do this is to just find ways to be helpful, to be friendly whilst doing so, and to do so without expecting anything immediate in return.  Over time you'll build a reputation, and befriend others who can help you in your journey.  Be cautious though that (unless you discover that helping people or education are your real passion!) you don't spend ALL your time on this though - you still need to invest time and effort in to your own learning and projects as well!


Hope some of that helps! :)

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