My son wants to be in the Video Game Industry,

Discussion in 'OT Technology' started by showtime2k4, Jan 26, 2007.

  1. showtime2k4

    showtime2k4 New Member

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    and I've done a yahoo search, but really cant find a site that will tell me what colleges or institutes are the best that I should send him to, and get prepared for. I really dont want to plan his future through a trade school and was hoping for more of a university where he can minor in something as a back up. i'm not saying the kid's gotta be an accountant or anything, but I just don't want to put all his eggs in one basket.

    as nervous as i am about sending my son down this path, I really would like him to do something he loves, and just want to give him his best chance at succeeding.

    so, i turn to OT, wondering if you guys had any info on what places I should be looking at, or any other words of wisdom.

    (my bad if its in the wrong forum)
     
  2. retorq

    retorq What up bitch??

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    A friend of mine's son just graduated from a school in the Pheonix area and he got an education to do basically the same thing. He's fairly good with computers and could probably get a PC/Netowrk tech job . . . I'll ask about the name of the school.
     
  3. GunboatDiplomat

    GunboatDiplomat New Member

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    Your description sounds pretty vague. "He wants to be in the video game industry." What do you mean by that? I'm sure he can go out and try to get a janitorial job at a game company right now, if all he wants is to "have something to do" with video games.

    Is he an artist? Can he draw textures or build models?
    Is he a writer? Can he write stories or scripts? Has he made a lot of his own game ideas?
    Is he technically proficient? Does he have good problem solving skills? Could he be a computer programmer or something?

    You say that you want him to "do something he loves" but you haven't told us what it is that he loves doing...
     
  4. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    If he wants to make video games, then he needs to either learn how to program in C++ or he needs to learn how to make 3D objects in a modeling program. Then, he needs to build a portfolio of stuff to prove he can do it, both to whatever school he goes to and to the companies he wants to work for. Nothing impresses like a self-starter.
     
  5. samm

    samm Next in Line

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    http://www.hci.iastate.edu

    It's a graduate program however. Tell your son to look into an undergrad program in Computer Science, or perhaps Art & Design, depending on his interests.
     
  6. sj23

    sj23 Active Member

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    USC has a minor under school of Cinematic Arts
    http://www-cntv.usc.edu/academic_programs/interactive_media/academic-interactive-home.cfm
     
  7. Doc Brown

    Doc Brown Don't make me make you my hobby

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    Rochester Institute of Technology has a computer sciences major
    that's well rated. Overall RIT is something like the 4th ranked technical school
    in the U.S.
     
  8. ady

    ady New Member

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    www.gamedev.net should have some good resources, and you can always ask in the forums as they have people at all levels in the games industry
     
  9. showtime2k4

    showtime2k4 New Member

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    this is all fantastic information, thank you very much. he wanted to be in the development area, but he is young, still a freshman but it with the market (in any field really, and especially schools) i just want him to focus seriously in the subject.

    There are tons of skills that he needs to familiarize himself with and master, but that will all come in time and pratice.

    thanks again OT, always coming through!!:bowdown:
     
  10. JustJeff

    JustJeff www.youtube.com/thisisjustjeff

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    RIT has a really bad town outside of the school... there's nothing to do there!!!


    Anyway, I would stay away from the "Video Game Design" undergrad programs and look for Computer Science/Computer Engineering Schools. I think he would have more fun learning about that stuff, and then applying it to the video game world. I'm pretty sure that most companies don't look for students who are majoring in Video Game Management. ^.^

    Just do some standard searches with the school couselor. (S)He should have a huge database of schools that would be in both your location/price range. Just check under Computer Science (Programming) or Computer Engineering (Hardware Design and Coding)
     
  11. kamiraa

    kamiraa OT Supporter

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    Send him to U of I in computer science. Have him take allot of tech electives and advanced core to fit into that category.
     
  12. Pr0Xima

    Pr0Xima SPY ZAPPIN MAH SENTRY!

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    another good step is if he is picking up on a certian aspect of game design(gfx or programing) he should try his hand at getting on a team that does mods for HL2/Battlefield/Quake or whatever. Its good to have something like that shows you can work part of a team towards the completion of a project.
     
  13. lugoismad

    lugoismad Active Member

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    Wow, cool topic. I'm actually a Gaming and Simulation Design Engineering Major (video game major for short). So hopefully I can awnser a few of your questions.

    I go to Shawnee State University, Its a small University in Southern Ohio.

    www.shawnee.edu

    www.ssucet.org is the page for our engineering department.

    Don't go to a trade school like Devry. I actually went on a tour there a few years ago, and its a total joke. Alot of people like to bash me, saying the classes I take are very trade schoolish, when in fact they are not at all. They here "Computer game major" and think all of my classes are just about making games.

    I'm of senior standing, but I am a junior in the program because I changed majors after my freshman year. I really disliked electronics.

    My current courses are Ethics, Computer vision, Calculus Based Physics and Simulation Design. Right now in Simulation Design we are working on making a game with the OGRE engine, and learning basically just key programming skills such as working with large projects (alot more complex than it seems), adding stuff like physics, GUIs and etc to the game, and basically just working on programming skills. In Computer Vision I am working on some photo editing programs, but its still early in the quarter, eventually we will be working on detecting skin tones in real time using a webcam so that a computer can track your face.


    Some of the cool features of the program are:
    1. There are 2 majors, a programming sided one, and an art sided one. BUT all the programming guys have to take some art, and vice versa, so that we can communicate to artists in the real world. I've taken 3 or 4 art classes, including Introduction to 3d and Organic computer modeling both using Maya.

    2. All of the freshman start out learning python as their first langauge, and by the end of the year are advanced enough to be able to make a mario'ish side scroller using Pygame. The next year they dive right in to learning OpenGL, and by the end of their sophmore year have made most of the key parts of a game engine.

    3. We still have to take almost all of the Computer Engineering Classes, but instead of where they are taking Electronics, we are taking more art and programming classes. Besides building circuit boards, I can do everything they can. I've taken Computer Networking, Operating Systems, Automata and Formal Language, and every other key course in a comp-sci or comp-eng curriculum. Basically what I'm saying is, if I don't find a job in the field (which honestly I'm not looking to) I can always get a job doing anything a compsci or compEng guy could. I can easily be a systems Administrator, computer programmer, or alot of other things not involving games but still involving computers.

    Then why if I am not wanting in the game design field am I in the degree? Because as I stated, we take almost all of the same classes, but its alot more fun, and I enjoy my classmates a whole lot more. I dislike the computer engineering guys because all of them are very dry and boring. Plus, I do enjoy making games and will continue to do so in my free time after I graduate.


    I suggest if your son wants to be in the industry to start learning some key skills like computer modeling or programming. If you have any questions, please PM me. I could even get a professor to awnser some if you send me an email address.

    Edit: and I forgot to include: a 4 year degree is a 4 year degree. Alot of people do not go into their desired field. I actually plan NOT to go into game design because I don't want to work 80 hour weeks and sleep under my desk 6 days a week. All it shows is that you were dedicated enough to complete something, and thats what employers want to see. I actually want to get on as a systems admin somewhere. This summer I will be taking my A+, RHCE, MSCE and a few other certs, just to get them out of the way.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2007
  14. lugoismad

    lugoismad Active Member

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    I very much second this.
    I am currently working on a game using the Torque Shader Engine. We have 6 modelers and I'm the only programming. If anyone here is interested in helping programing, please PM me.
     
  15. Supergeek

    Supergeek New Member

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    It's sad how people in the game industry are abused right now. Young people are so happy to get a job involved with games that they don't care about the poor pay, and they ignore the crazy extra hours until they have a nervous breakdown or quit. They think they're going to "make it big" on a successful project, but it never happens.

    We need unions for programmers and other jobs, in all tech industries. When the internet first boomed and some people made millions on stock options, yeah, it made sense to make a gamble and take low pay in exchange for stock or a chance that the company will take off like a rocket. The instant millionaires are few and far between now. It's time for companies to realize that you can't just expect people to work 80+ hour work weeks and replace them when they burn out. I mean, they can and do, but it needs to stop.
     
  16. Peyomp

    Peyomp New Member

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    I'll ask my brother. He works at THQ.

    Your son might check out Game Developer's Conference in San Francisco later this year!

    Where to school him depends on what he wants to do. Program? Then send him to a top engineering school. Gaming programmers are very, very good.
     
  17. Peyomp

    Peyomp New Member

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    A few big companies are like this, but actually this is not the way the game industry is as a whole. EA is not representative of the industry as a whole. My brother makes hella bank doing AI for game companies, and he has gotten mad bonuses and stock options too.
     
  18. SLED

    SLED build an idiot proof device and someone else will

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    I only read half of the thread, but here is the school I went to which has a gaming bachelors program.

    http://www.uat.edu/
     
  19. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    You mean like a Screen Actors' Guild for game designers? Not a bad idea, all in all.

    Another option, of course, is to spend your life going from one startup to the next, buying their stock and helping them get their first game off the ground, then bailing before they get big and heartless and abusive.
     
  20. Supergeek

    Supergeek New Member

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    It's good to hear that it's not all huge, oppressive developers. But everything I read, even from the developers posting on their own web sites (especially MMOs like Vanguard and EverQuest) they work insane hours, and it will never end because these games will always be "in development."

    Maybe it's not all of them; maybe it's just some of them, but "chronic overwork" is the overall impression I have.

    I would love to get involved in the gaming industry as a writer and designer, but I've stayed away because of all of the bad stereotypes. Plus the fact that you have to "work your way up" in the industry to get into design unless you are a programmer with a degree or an artist with a thick portfolio, and I'm neither of those.
     

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