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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Shirebrook, England
    Posts
    637
    Quote Originally Posted by jycottonmouth56 View Post
    Will programming positions be readily available? Will there be high competetion for jobs?
    Depends on where you are applying, some place are taking people on all the time, but losing them just a quickly. Other place take on lots of people at the beginning of a project, then drop them once it's over.

    Like most good jobs you'll find a level of competition. For that edge, there are a number of things you can do. One is to take a course that is supported or sponsored by a game developer. Another is to get an internship at a Games Development studio. One more is to create a kick ass portfolio, of mods and games that you made off your own back, but still be modest about them.

    There are others, these are just ideas. I still recommend getting '3D Game Engine Programming' as it has a great intro of the Game Industry and what it's like working in it as a games programmer, never mind everything else it has to offer.

    thing2k

    Wii Friendcode: 6478 2149 1540 7684

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    1,374
    3D Game Engine Programming is a great book, bought that a little while ago.

    Also if you want to know what its like working in the industry visit GamaSutra has job postings so you can see what the requirements might be(note that they differ from company to company), they also have post mortems where developers discuss the development cycle for the game. Pretty cool stuff.
    CodeGuru: DLL Tutorial For Beginners by me. Rated 4 1/2 out of 5.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    5
    Superhero, thank you soooo much for that site, it really makes me anxious to work harder. The few jobs I have read really excites me, although I always wanted to make my own game with my own ideas and get really really creative with them, I guess just working for a company is just the start, but even if I don't get to make games of my own ideas, that is good enough for me because I worship games.

    Thank you guys for all the great info, I'm sure as hell gonno come here a lot more. Awesome site

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    US
    Posts
    100
    If you don't have a really patient and understanding girlfreind then get rid of her. She'll leave you anyway.

    Take as much math as you can. They wont "require" you to in college, but you ought to if you want a leg up. Programming IS A Field of Mathematics. You cannot seperate the two.

    Write code, write more code, then write even more code. Dont think you should write a simpe algorithm once then re-use that code your whole life. Write it, re-write it, then write it again. until you can write it quickly, and understand why the little differences in how you wrote it make a huge impact in the rest of your programming.

    And lastly, if you want a serious career in game programming then you will have to be ahead of the curve in all of your courses. There are litterally thousands more looking for your job than there are jobs available.

    The future of games is moving towards Animation, artwork, and other game assets, while the programming is becoming more normallized. What this means is that games in the future will require even fewer programmers than they do today, while also requireing more animators, and 3d artists.

    Don't think that any school is going to show you everything you need to know. Get out there and start learning stuff on the side, and in addition to the stuff you are being tought.

    Look for sites like 3DBuzz where you can get top notch advise, experience, and direction.

    And finally, Join the Associations, and professional affiliate programs as soon as possible. Find out what they can do for you. And then find out what you can do for them.

    http://www.igda.org/

    Good luck, and don't ever give up.

    Dan -

  5. #15
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Forest City, PA, USA
    Posts
    842
    Somone already mentioned gamasutra. In case you didn't find it yet, here's their advice on becoming a game programmer:
    http://www.gamasutra.com/features/20...ncher_01.shtml

    And here's some other advice.
    http://www.fastgraph.com/makegames/chapt1.html
    In just two days, tomorrow will become yesterday.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    1,750
    to get good, you just need to practise programming. Start by making small games like pong, pac man etc. As you build up your code base, you will find making bigger and bigger games easier. Don't try to jump into making a huge multi-player 3D game at first.
    C++, 3D OpenGL and Game Programming video tutorials:
    www.MarekKnows.com
    Play my free games: Ghost Toast, Zing, Jewel Thief

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Posts
    616
    I'm currently a student at DigiPen (without a doubt the hardest game development college ever!). Not only do we get to hear what it takes, but also see.

    This is what I think makes good programmers:

    - Good LOW LEVEL knowledge of what's going on in a computer! Good programmers use what's giving to them, amazing programmers know what's going on. Things such as knowing how/why float works and why it has a loss of precision (hint: look up IEEE 754 standard). Before I came here, I was just a "user" of technology. You give me some programming task, I can try to figure out a way to do it. However, I could not tell you bare bones what's going on in the computer, for using the same example, I didn't know WHY I had float precision errors. I just knew I had them, and dealt with them. This has all changed, and wow it's awesome knowing this stuff. I would suggest learning Binary (it's not that hard).

    - Determination. Are you willing to stay up all night working on projects? Even ones you hate? You need to put in 110% effort on everything you do. Give up your life as you know it when you have to just to get the job done.

    - Willing to learn fast. Times change. Your job changes, your engine changes. There's barely any time to get into a rhythm with programming. One day you're programming pong, the next day you're programming 2D platformers. You need to be very agile. This also applies to languages. While C/C++ are the dominant language, there is going to be a better one coming around sooner or latter that will replace it, you have my promise. People thought assembly was going to be the primary language forever, then C (well, preceded by B for a while), then C++. This will change and you need to change with it. On that note, don't get too caught up in learning any one API and only stick to it, example being DirectX and OpenGL. Try to master one, and get acquainted with the other so it's not foreign.

    - Work with a team. No way to cut it, you will have to work with other people you won't like, work in code that you don't like how it's put together or whatever. Such is life and live with it.

    - Be willing to work on any project. Don't start day 1 and expect to write the next big MMO. Not going to happen. Start really, really small. Learn the language, then learn the basics of how games work (game loop and such), and branch out from there. I'll say it again, START SMALL.

    - LOVE MATH! If you hear math and think "meh", you should take another look at this career. Things like trig is easy. Right now, very early at my school we're doing a bunch of 2D vector stuff. It's complex stuff (dot product, magnitude, oh my) and for me it's not getting harder. If you don't enjoy this stuff, you won't do well. Sorry, not going to sugar coat it.


    My advice is to start learning C (not C++), and yes there is a difference. Many companies still use C in some areas, and it's a LOT harder starting at C++ and going to C since you don't know what it's lacking and all of the tricks. If you get the right book, you can go from C to C++ without having too many "C-isms" (tricks used in C that don't apply to C++). I suggest "Modern C Programming" by K.N. King.

    I'm not going to lie, you're crazy if you want to go into the games industry. We're still a very, very young industry and changes a lot (look at the quality of life stuff for instance). Be willing to pour your heart and soul into everything you do. Also be willing to give up "playing" games again. From the moment you become games programmers, you will begin analyzing and nitpicking games. You will no longer be able to relax, and just play for the hell of it. It's the curse of the job.

    If you want college advice, I honestly would suggest DigiPen Institute of Technology in Redmond, WA. It's been called the "Harvard" of video game colleges, and you will definitely learn a lot here. It's also the hardest school and has around a 50% drop out rate. It's intense here and trust me, you will find out if you're meant for it or not.

    My final piece of advice is the following: There is a difference between PLAYING games and MAKING games. Make sure you choose the one that will make you happiest.

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    3,774
    Looking at the path a friend of mine has gone through, a good way in if you're up for it is to go in as QA for a gaming company, where you methodically test and write down issues.. It seriously helps if you understand the logic behind how games work and can help track things down quicker or even find the solutions yourself by putting in that "extra effort" on your own time.
    Delphi !ROCKS!
    Got a question? Read this first!!!
    "You gotta help us, Doc. We've tried nothin' and we're all out of ideas"

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Posts
    616
    While QA is an often recommended path, it's not always the best one, and really depends on the company if you're planning on advancing or not.

    If I were you, work on programming really well. Get internships at companies for internships or whatever, but if you want to be a programmer, start as a programmer. However, if you need money or want the experience, QA is an excellent idea. I have a friend who worked for 6 years in QA and never got anywhere (To give you an idea, he worked on Supreme Commander, Halo 1/2, and multiple others great titles.). He tried hard to advance to either programming or game design positions and couldn't really achieve it within a reasonable time frame.

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