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About Azgur

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  1. That actually tends to scare potential employers somewhat. Self taught programmers can for example be oblivious to code quality or obsessive about code quality. Getting a programming related job (in any field) is probably the best thing you can do for your 'training'. Real world experience is much more valuable than self taught experience. This would be a better way to invest your time than spending more on self-teaching trying to land a job in the games industry right away. Of course, after hours you can still spend your time on learning c++ or other languages commonly used in gamedev.
  2. Azgur

    The path I choose to break in.

    What I mean is, making games is hard. Thus, making games for the purpose of honing your skill as a game designer is not particularly efficient, as you'll be spending most your time learning programming, etc. This is mostly the reason I suggest creating games outside of the realm of digital entertainment. Prototyping and play-testing a board game only takes some paper, glue, markers and a few friends willing to put up with a probably initially bad game. Of course, don't disregard level design, as it is good practice, although slightly more narrow on scope (imo).
  3. Azgur

    The path I choose to break in.

    Thank you for the sugestion it seems a good idea to improve skills as a designer but maybe it would be a little bit hard to get the job with that kind of work, how do you show to a company that your game is fun? in person? [/quote] It's a hard thing to show, but being able to explain design decisions and the results they get goes a long way. You could even record play testing sessions if you wanted to. Though, the former is more likely what would happen . At the very least, record your progress. What problems did you find, which decisions did you make to fix them, that's great stuff to show off. I guess half the issue with game design always is proving/showing your skill before you have released titles on your resume. Some companies will give you a design test. Having done board games or other games will have prepared you for these tests more than having done level design. Unless your intention is to get hired as a level designer. Either way, generally it comes down to sounding like you know what you're talking about at the interview. In order to reach that point you need practice and a ton of it. And making digital games can be a bit too time consuming and too technical to efficiently spent your time honing your game designer skill. However, that said. It will still be worth it to make games in Flash or other lower entry technologies.
  4. Azgur

    Grantham University Online

    What do you intend to get out of this course? Judging by the list on that page you'll get somewhat of a decent introduction to various programming languages, but that's about as far as it goes. With the skills learned you should be able to enter web development or application development if the company isn't too picky. As a preparation for game programming the course is below the minimum you'll need for an entry position. If you're lucky and their math classes are decent, it might still be worth while if you spent the rest of your free time to polish up your programming skill.
  5. Azgur

    The path I choose to break in.

    Proving yourself as a game designer is generally a bit trickier than the other professions (like artist, programmer, etc). While level design demonstrates a certain skill, it doesn't really demonstrate particular game designer skill. Personally I find there's a really good solution to this outside of the realm of digital entertainment. Designing, balancing and play testing table-top/card games is an excellent way to hone and prove your skill as a game designer. The assumption here is that you do attempt to go out of the box a bit
  6. Azgur


    Perfect. Start making a portfolio and apply to studios. Animators are in heavy demand.
  7. I'd first have to ask you, have you tried? It probably also would help us to know where you're from. Here in Montreal at least just looking around the office I see several designers which have been relocated. You may not have to change career at all, it simply may take applying to more companies.
  8. There is no difference between having that as a goal and having working for a large studio as a goal. You will, regardless of which direction you pick, have to go put in your time at an existing studio. Yes, there are these success stories of people that went indie right off the bat, they're also only a fraction of successful indie developers. You need to learn the craft and master it. The best way of doing this is at a decent game studio. The real education starts after you get hired. Also remember, it's a job. It's not always going to be fun. You may get boring and repetitive tasks, but many still make this work and find their own fun. Running your own studio is not going to change this. You'll just be doing more boring management tasks instead. As for how to get into a studio, the FAQ largely covers this. Don't head straight for indie, it's an efficient way to fail fast.
  9. Considering the fact that designer is rarely an entry position in the game industry im guessing that the expect people to become game programmers first. Also its a 4 years program not one year like the art institutes, full sail or something else. Lastly, the course has been designer in cooperation with Ubisoft Montreal (I Think its the largest studio in the world) Since the Quebec industry is growing very fast. Be aware im not trying to sell this program but I have difficulty understanding whats wrong with it. except for the part where you say its too well rounded and that you are introduced to too many things. But again, its 4 years to have all these classes not 1. [/quote] I'm very much aware it's a 4 year course. I've written everything with the assumption it's a 4 year course. As for designer not being an entry position. This is not entirely true. There are game designer entry positions, you just may not find them at [large studio of your choice]. It's the same with entry positions in different professions in the industry. I personally work with several designers without a programmer or art background. I'll still state the course seems way too heavily focused on programming for a game design course. But then considering the course as a way to educate you as a game programmer, the balance still seems off. If your goal is to become a game designer you might want to see if you can find something with a heavier focus on game design and related subjects. An introduction to programming is fine, going all the way to neural networks is a waste of your time. Whenever they include "neutral networks" among other subjects I highly suspect them to just list everything they thought was cool to attract new students and completely disregarded making a well balanced course. Like I previously mentioned, there's a strange heavy focus on AI and programming in general that is very much out of place and out of scale with the rest of the course. You may also want to note, if you'd enter the industry as a programmer and switch designer, you'd likely be taking a pay cut. You really need to take a skeptical look at the course and see if they can back up their claims. If possible, see if you can somehow talk to some graduates. You can't become a game designer, artist and programmer at the same time. A course that aims to do all of that will leave you with a skillset that won't get you hired in any of those 3 positions. That's what I fear the most when reading the descriptions.
  10. Overall my impression is that the course is too well rounded. Now this is not entirely a bad thing, but I get this feeling this course will get you introduced to many components of game development but makes you a master of none. For a game designer it is certainly useful to know and have some experience with the other professions such as programming and art, but only to a certain extend. The one thing I can tell, the course doesn't seem focused towards making you a decent game designer. Or it simply could the course is wrongly labelled and they actually aim to educate you as a game programmer. The course is way too programmer heavy for a game design course. If this is the case, the fact they mislabeled it should be a major warning sign. You'll have to worry about what else they're mistaken on. Subjectively, this may be translation errors, but it comes somewhat across as a lot of babbling about things they don't really understand or realize the scope off. The AI course lists several high level topics that could take the entire course to teach you in a meaningful way. Which would lead me to believe they either don't realize the scope or will just give brief introductions. AI is strangely enough also the only subject where they seem to go into this much depth. Meanwhile there's several other areas of programming that would be essential for your game programmer toolset they don't even mention. You'd best see if they have something like an open day and talk to students, see how they feel about the course. My impression is that the balance is completely off and based on that likely more is wrong with the entire course.
  11. 1. It's the basis for practical knowledge. While it doesn't really "count" for studios when hiring, it does count for you personally to be able to develop your skills to a point where you can apply this knowledge to build your portfolio. 2. This is not entirely true. It just counts less. Previous work experience shows you're experienced in keeping a job and have more experience in actually "working" than a fresh graduate. 3. Projects help a ton, but do finish them. Many have dozens of small demos, very few have a polished finished project. A single finished project is worth more than a dozen different tech demos. 4. Never hurts, but don't be over confident http://en.wikipedia....g–Kruger_effect is a trap many fall into. 5. Honestly, many paint it in horrible ways, but how many people can say they wake up in the morning and look forward to heading off to work? I know I can. It's not an industry for everyone, but it's an amazing industry if it's for you. I'm surrounded by clever intelligent people who teach me something new every day. And you don't even hear me complaining when I dive into our 12 year old legacy code base written in crunch time. Finally, game programmers are in very heavy demand. Now is a pretty good time to jump the bandwagon . Many studios have open programmer positions they just can't fill, many are willing to hire juniors to train instead.
  12. Making games and studying are not mutually exclusive. In fact, you'll likely have more opportunity to make games while studying than while flipping burgers. You'll be in an educational environment surrounded by other students with a similar goal. That alone will teach you a ton you won't get from hacking away on your own. You'll have people to review your work, you'll have people you can bounce ideas of and brainstorm with. Finally, the content of a CS course is not as irrelevant as you think. It'll prepare you a ton better for the industry than only slaving away using those free evenings. If you want to make games right now, just do it. But keep studying. You can do both and you'll be a better developer for it.
  13. Azgur

    Feedback: Programmer Portfolio

    Hi Valdimir, I'd can the "links" section. It really is irrelevant to your portfolio. Your target audience is potential employers, they really won't care about a few forums or sites. On your resume my OCD sense is tingling. The content of the left column quite often doesn't line up with the right column. (In Chrome at least). As for the projects, looks good overall. No particular criticism atm.
  14. Azgur

    Studying Games Programming

    I can personally recommend the programming track of "International Game Architecture and Design" at NHTV Breda in the Netherlands. The course is taught in English and goes significantly in depth to prepare you for a job as game programmer. (do stay away from the "indie game development" and "design and production" courses, these are fairly terrible and serve more to make money off those who don't make it on the programmer/artist track) http://made.nhtv.nl/ contains quite a bit of info, though I feel it still doesn't entirely do justice to the accomplishments of the course. I do wonder however, have you taken a stab at different entry level positions? Given your list of accomplishments you probably should be able to find work already in the industry.
  15. I'd say for practical reasons 3D artist (or artist in general even) is a much more convenient way into the industry. It's a very well defined job with clear expectations. Unlike game designer, it also has a better worked out education path. Getting into the industry as a game designer is hard, but Tom Sloper's FAQ already covered most of this. On many development teams everyone is a game designer. A few hold the actual title and do the actual game design work, but often the entire team is queried for input and thoughts. The entire team is expected to be somewhat of a game designer and for many this is enough to get their "game design fix". Taking the artist path you'll be able to do both to a certain extend if you're with the right company.
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