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If you’re considering a career in games development, there’s a lot you need to understand before you start on your journey. The following advice will help any budding software developer to get onto the right track. From identifying the right area of games design for you to choosing a relevant degree, as well as offering tips on how to land your first job.
First of all, like most careers in software today, you will need to make sure that you have the right education. Choosing the correct degree is the first step. The exact course title will vary from where in the world you are located. But in the United Kingdom, for instance, the most relevant degrees will be called something along the lines of “Game Design”.
There are several highly acclaimed universities in the UK that offer excellent courses, including Abertay University’s Game Design and Production degree. Abertay, which is located in Dundee, Scotland, has famously produced many talented developers and designers.
Perhaps the most notable of all is David Scott Jones, who co-founded DMA Design (later Rockstar Games), the company behind the Grand Theft Auto franchise among many other successful titles.
Many people don’t fully appreciate how diverse game design is. What exactly do you mean by “games”? Social games, such as those you might see on Facebook? What about console games, played by hardcore gamers, with vivid sounds and graphics? Or how about casino games, such as slots and other random number games?
Then there’s the question of which area to focus on? Do you specialize in one area or go for a broader approach? The best answer probably lies in your own interests and passion. If one appeals more than the others, that will be the best choice for you. After all, they say that if you find a job that you love, something that is really a hobby, it won’t feel like work at all.
Not everyone is familiar with all of the different game genres and many people focus too much on traditional video games, which is a very competitive area. A good way to find out whether or not you could be interested in developing other types of games is simply to try and play these games for yourself. As silly as it might seem, get involved with those social media games that the boomers enjoy so much. Maybe you’ll like it.
The same goes for casino games. But you don’t need to risk any money to try these games out, not if you take advantage of no deposit casino bonuses. These offers allow you to register at a gambling site and use the bonus money to play games, without you ever needing to make a real money deposit. Choose from a wide selection of sites that were reviewed by experts with information on how to claim these bonuses to enjoy many different games this will help you get a strong feel for the subject, with no risk at all.
Once you are comfortable with the right type of game, you need to choose the right role. Designing a game requires several different people to come together and work as a unit. There are animators, conceptual artists, and graphic designers who work on visuals. Software engineers, multimedia programmers, and app developers actually build these games. Then there are testers, analysts, and even cyber security specialists.
After finding the right role for you, you need to find a job. But before you come to that point, you should already be working on your own projects. Any prospective employer is going to want to see a portfolio. Probably the best piece of advice on how to find a job as a game developer is to simply make some games.
Use your free time to develop games of your own. If you get lucky and produce something that goes viral, you can leverage that to work as a freelance game designer. If that doesn’t happen, anything you design or build yourself will teach you fundamental, transferable skills which an employer would appreciate, plus it can be used as part of your portfolio.
You could ask a games studio for a job as a tester. This shows a genuine enthusiasm and will help you to get to know how a game studio works on a day-to-day basis. You can check the websites of studios for vacancies, or reach out to their recruitment team and ask them to keep you in mind for future projects. None of this will do any harm to any future job applications.
The final piece of advice on your path to becoming a games designer is to be patient. You will experience rejection. Your work will be criticized. You will face obstacles along the way. Don’t let any of this stop you from pursuing your dream. Keep going and your rewards will come in time.
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