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tex-murph

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About tex-murph

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  1. Okay gotcha, thanks for clarifying. Improving more quickly is my top priority now. I see people in their 20s who slowly build up their work on the side, but at 36 I'm pretty driven on maximizing my time right now. So I see your point is that while I shouldn't expect to have a program open any doors for me, I still could improve at an accelerated pace in a good program. Sorry, I could see how my post was pretty dense. Basically, yup, I'm in NYC. I'm looking at targeting Rockstar and Avalanche, since you as mentioned, very little is in NYC beyond small mobile companies that are looking for programmers and artists only. No cinematic artist, trailer editor, or even level design gigs usually. So I have a narrow highly competitive window to try to break through, which is part of my concern in making sure I stand out amongst other applicants who are younger and more experienced than me.
  2. I am building my own work game demo work samples currently. They're going on a portfolio website I'm putting together. My thought on school was just wondering, for example, if that will help facilitate that process of making work samples more effectively with more guidance. I see plenty of people making games for numerous years, but that doesn't translate to a job for them. It seems common for people to get stuck after working on their own projects for years. So my concern is mainly making sure I don't get lost making work samples for years in a way that doesn't get me anywhere productively. I want to be smart and targeted about the whole process. Sorry, I can see how my info in the post is scattered around a bit. I'm primarily interested in design programs that offer specific focuses on topics such as narrative design and level design - i.e. SMU Guildhall. I'm primarily interested in narrative design, but am interesting in any aspect that is storytelling related - i.e. level design. I know the Internet is full of resources that can help you learn how to learn development skills, and I use them all the time, so I want an environment that could help prepare me for my long term narrative design goals. I'd like to have better work samples, get more guidance, ideally meet collaborators, etc. My fiance is okay with me moving temporarily for school, but for us to move permanently, it would earliest be years from now. She's open to moving, but a lot of things need to be worked out for us to both agree to that. The goal currently is to break in in some form here, and then later on make a strong case for moving after I have some degree of traction.
  3. Thank you for your response! Knowing that you have firsthand experience at one of those schools is helpful when considering your perspective on recommending against me going to school! It certainly reinforces the prevailing viewpoint I see that work samples trump everything. I still do wonder if going to a program could help me create better work samples, in a focused nurturing environment, but the financial burden of most schools just doesn't make that compelling enough of a reason on its own. And thank you for the links. Since you shared the link on location, does this mean you think NY is not a good spot for me? I'm still too inexperienced to know the climate here well enough. Ideally I'd like to still get my foot in the door here first before moving. Will also make moving an easier sell on the fiancee later :).
  4. Hi! I'm a video editor and filmmaker who (many years ago) graduated with an undergrad film degree. I'm looking into a career change into the gaming industry, and while I don't want to go back to school to get a masters, I'm currently researching the possibility. I am considering if it will help me more quickly and efficiently move forward to where I want to go. Over the course of the last year, I have taken shorter term online video game writing classes, and I learned more about the details of what a narrative designer does. Narrative design sounds like my dream job that focuses on what excites me about games - interactive storytelling. I've also taken an 8 week Unity class that I loved, and since then am building up demos/work samples to put on a new website I made. I'm doing as much networking, creating, and learning as I can to get that first foot in the door. I know I'm starting over, and am excited about any opportunity to continue learning, whether it be an internship, QA job, or working with other indie developers. Of course, I know there are a lot of obstacles in my way. I know narrative design jobs are one of the hardest jobs to get, and that my ideas for to more immediately break into the industry (applying for work as a trailer editor who uses Machinima in-game tools, cinematic artist, level designer) are all still incredibly competitive positions. I also recognize that New York is not bustling full of narrative based game companies, and it's mainly the two highly selective big studios (Rockstar and Avalanche) where my skills could be a good fit. Most companies here are looking only for programmers and artists. (Moving is currently not an option for me) And no matter what, I know I'll be competing with kids coming out of schools like NYU who already have polished portfolio websites and already are doing freelance Unity work. Seeing these roadblocks, it does make me consider if I would benefit from going to a good MA program that could help better guide me towards where I want to go more quickly, with less stumbling around and experimenting on my own. USC and NYU are out of my price range, but SMU Guildhall looks the most promising so far. Its price is (relatively) decent, and its design program explicitly says it prepares you for career tracks including narrative design. I'm also considering DePaul, Full Sail and Drexel just due to affordability. Sorry for the long post, but based on all of that information, I am curious if anyone has thoughts on whether a design program would help move my career forward? And if so, any thoughts on the schools I am considering? (Suggestions welcome) Thanks in advance!
  5. Thanks for your feedback! Re audio - yeah, from what I gather, it seems companies often will have a very low number of dedicated staff handling audio design, so hiring is very competitive and the roles go to people already in the industry. Re marketing/PR/AV Specialist - I'd be interested in those as entry ways, if it meant a way in to making contacts, but ultimately I'm interested in roles where I am part of the storytelling process of the game itself. As an editor, I'm making choices about how I'm telling the director or producer's story. I still do wonder about level design, since - like editing - you're taking a number of assets and structuring them together into one cohesive whole. Putting together a level feels somewhat similar to putting together a scene in a film. But, as mentioned, it seems like it still boils down to an 'art' role, where you're still creating some form of 3D art, so it would most likely be a difficult uphill learning curve for me, as I have no art background. And if I did create some work samples, my existing resume wouldn't help me most likely.
  6. Hi Tom, Thank you for the response and the link! What you wrote seems to confirm that my existing career won’t help me much, as my writing/directing work is more indie/experimental, and (as you noted) traditional video editing just doesn’t seem to translate to any design related role (beyond promos). So in other words, I should expect to start over, career wise, and not expect my current resume to matter too much (beyond showing I am older!) It’s still helpful to get that confirmation from you, as from reading your site, you seem to have a lot of industry experience. My current plan is still to start learning Unity - potentially in a night class environment where you work in assigned teams - as a way to get a feel for what my strengths could be. Regardless of a career shift, I am very interested in making small story based games in Unity, just as a creative outlet.
  7. Hi, I'm a professional video editor. I also write and direct my own shorter projects, but my main resume is all video editing. I am looking to transition into the game industry, and was wondering if anyone has any advice for what kind of jobs (entry level or long term) could make use of my existing skillset? I don't have a specific game industry specialization in mind, as my priority is try to leverage my existing work and resume into an asset that could help set me apart when applying for a job. I'm very interested in companies that emphasize storytelling in games. I have come across newer jobs like CInematics Designer or Narrative Designer, but these sound like far from entry level positions. When looking at entry level jobs, this is what I've come up with so far - -I know a little C/C++, but I am not a coder. Just not my specialty. - I am not an artist. - Level design sounds interesting, as I realize in story based games, a level can be a form of storytelling. However, I have read companies tend to hire level designers with an art or architecture background, so I'm not sure my skillset helps me here either. (I haven't made a map for a game since the first DooM!) I can fully accept that my existing skillset might not translate into a job! I definitely have had a tough time finding a clear answer for myself. However, I figured perhaps someone more well versed in the current industry could lend some more insight into a specialization that might be a good fit for me? I'm also investigating learning Unity so I can create some work samples, once I have a better idea of what I want to focus on. The full backstory is that I'm someone who grew up wanting to make games, but was more interested in storytelling than coding or art. I chose my career back in the early 2000s, and today it looks like there are more story-centric games, and more specialized storytelling roles as AAA games get bigger. Most of my screenplays are inspired by games, and I've even been told some of my ideas would work better as a game, so I'm basically investigating if I might end up being happier working in the medium I was first passionate about. Thanks for reading
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