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How to become a Game Programmer?
Currently, programmers who create computer games are among the most desired and profitable professions in the market. If you would like to combine passion with professional plans and find a job related to the IT industry, the Game programmer position will be a very good idea. Are you wondering what requirements you must meet? The key matter is the ability to move freely among the two major programming languages - C# and C++. You should know that they are not the only programming languages, but they remain a solid foundation and a game programmer cannot do without them.
It is true that a person who did not have a lot to do with C# and C++, will have to put a lot of hard work to catch up. However, if you are not afraid to undertake new exciting challenges, you will achieve success in this field. Below you can find tips that will help you in the discussed topic.
Your main goal is to gain technical knowledge, therefore you should focus on being familiar with programming languages.
C# is a language that is a result of Microsoft's crew work. That language is ideal for applications' development and network services. XNA Framework is an assisting tool which accompanies C#. It will help you in many technical questions related to application development - XNA significantly shortens the time from the beginning of development to the final effect.
Adobe's Flash is a popular computer program that uses the programming language ActionScript. With its help you can create animation and multimedia on a website. In addition, Flash is also a tool for creating on-line games.
The attractiveness and versatility of Adobe's Flash technology is proven by the fact that it conquers new markets, including Internet ads which are created just for this program. Flash has many helpful extras, so using it will surprise you.
More about Flash can be found on those pages:
If you like new challenges, you can learn the game coding principles at home. Unfortunately, there is no field of study that will provide you with a programmer's diploma. Undoubtedly the most related major is information science. If you have the opportunity please find out whether your University organizes extra classes in C++. That would be a thing worth doing for your professional future. You can also find courses devoted to specific programming languages, such classes are a great workout that will extend your previously acquired knowledge.
No matter how many courses you complete and how many books you read - remember this one rule. It is extremely important to use the knowledge you have gained in practice, so always follow the rules that you have learned during the theoretical classes.
Create programs, applications, and do not forget to show them to the companies that you would like to work with. Those skills will certainly make a great impression on potential employers, they will be a sign of your technical skills, independence and ingenuity. If you have experience in moderating a server, you can also be proud of that, but only when the contribution of your work is documented.
Programming is a demanding job which requires concentration and patience, but devoting to the things that you feel passionate about pays off.
How to become a Video Game Producer?
A Video Game Producer is a key to the success of a project.
He is responsible for financial matters and for the execution of tasks within the outlined period. He also supports the team and motivates everyone to further work. His another task is an overall supervision of company's employees, that is why this is a position for responsible people.
A Day in a life of the Video Game Producer
Video Game Producer's job is dynamic, it is not always possible to predict the whole working day from the beginning to the end. He undertakes different tasks when the initial concept is created and completely different ones when the game is to be published. In the initial phase of the game development the producer works with designers, he offers his experience and assistance to make the prototype look perfect. As he supervises the strict adherence to the established plan, he must have high interpersonal skills and nerves of steel during meetings which are often stressful and demanding. He often acts as a mediator between the team members to ensure that the differences between them do not delay the whole project. Another things is that the producer supervises the creation of game instructions, so he has to maintain close relations with the QA team to eliminate all detected errors. When the game is finished, a successful advertising campaign becomes the priority - it is organized together with the PR department. Only with appropriate promotion the product can be successful.
The Video Game Producer has to play many roles in the team, however, there is a set of certain characteristics, that he has to possess. Definitely, the most important thing is for him to have highly developed communication skills. Both in written texts and in conversations with co-workers - producer should be able to express his thoughts by words that do not raise doubts about his intentions and are concise and clear. He also has to be a disciplined and organized person, because only then he can manage a large amount of duties when time runs fast.
Below we advise some steps you should take to become a good producer. We believe that they will be helpful in your future career development.
Get specialized education during courses and workshops connected with computer games. Even if your course of studies does not cover that area, you should work on some additional activities that will help you evolve in that direction.
Gain experience in a company related to computer games. Look for internships - many companies offer that kind of solutions. You can also take on the challenge of creating a prototype of a computer game. If you cooperate with a developer and a game artist, you have a chance to create a project that will make many potential employers interested in your work.
Be meticulous! Video games require taking care of every smallest detail, you need to check each stage of the project very carefully, to be sure that there are no mistakes. You should also look at the work of each team member to figure what are his most effective ways of working and how he interacts with other team members.
Working as a Video Game Producer demands many efforts. But each task that you complete and the positive reviews of the players are rewards that indicate your final success.
How to become a QA Tester?
QA Tester - who is he?
The abbreviation comes from Quality Assurance and means as much as a guarantee of quality.
A person working as a QA Tester prepares a test scenario for each of the games created by our company. This is a very responsible job as QA Tester must capture each error and remove it from the product created by our company. We focus on quality, so we make every effort to ensure that our work brings the expected results. Professional QA Tester should focus both on the entertaining and technical qualities of a game.
A large percentage of people starting a job at the department of quality control is employed by the publisher on a contract basis or for a trial period - these workers can count on an hourly rate. Jobs can be quickly found on the website of a potential employer, and in online job portals. Once you find your employment, you will be assigned with a specific issue, which will be the main part of your job. For instance your job may be a full day testing of a multiplayer game with other testers, you may also be designated to analyze the balance of a game or issues related to the network. As a QA Tester you will need to demonstrate a great perception and thoroughness. You should pay attention to each and every error, whether it is a technical defect or a typo - inform your colleagues about any irregularities spotted by you, so the team has a chance to fix them.
The fascination with computer games is very helpful when working as QA Tester, but please do not forget about the other crucial qualities. You have to be able to write concisely and clearly, basic computer skills are also a must. If you describe a bug in an inaccurate or incomprehensible way, programmers will not get your intentions, and consequently waste more of your and their time to track and remove the fault. QA Tester's first rule is: Write clearly and you will make your work efficient.
If you are applying for QA Tester's position, be prepared for a set of questions about your computer skills. Issues such as knowledge of Microsoft Office, ability to update drivers, adding and removing equipment should not be unknown to you. Those skills should be well-mastered as they will be necessary during the first period of your work in a company. Many people treat QA Tester's position as a bridgehead on the way to a career in the game industry, but only you can decide how you will treat this job. It often happens that after you gain the necessary knowledge you get promoted to an associate, and then you become a producer, because the organizational and managerial skills gained in the Quality Control Team are required in further career.
There's no denying that working as a QA tester can be a difficult challenge. A large number of overtime hours or tedious work when you have to repeat the same task over and over again can be discouraging. But remember that this job gives you an extensive knowledge about the process of developing games and experience that increases your value as a professional on the labor market.
How to become a Game Musician?
As you probably know, just as is case with movies, computer games also have their own soundtracks. Well-composed music is a very important element: it creates the appropriate tension in the plot of a game, illustrates the images, allows the player to empathize with the specific situation. It happens that music attracts the player - potential user is interested in a track, then he finds it in a game and ends up playing it.
If you are interested in computer games and have a talent for creating music, you can combine work with pleasure. You can have an impact on what will be heard from the speakers while players will be fighting with enemies or taking part in a car race. You can compose that music!
The first step
Making music is a work that requires considerable expertise. You should know the principles of music and harmony. The knowledge about instruments is also necessary and if you mastered the art of playing one of them, it will be a useful asset in further work.
To work on creating soundtracks for the computer industry a solid education in the field of composition is a must. You can acquire that knowledge at a university - that will take you from 3 to 5 years. In addition, you should take a course on sound processing - thanks to that you will get the desired effect of your work and in case of doubt you will be able to effectively communicate on problematic issues. For instance you will be able to talk about a suggested sound format with experts responsible for the technical aspects of the game.
At the initial stage of job searching be prepared for knocking from door to door. Send e-mails with samples of your work, visit game developing companies with your demo material, do not hesitate to show them that they should invest in your project. Before the meeting make sure that you saved the sound in a format that will work on the equipment available during the interview. Keep in mind that beginner composers are usually hired on a contract of specified work or on a contract of service. Only after gaining experience they may be hired on a permanent basis.
If you want to be a composer of a computer game soundtrack you should be prepared to work as a team. It makes the work on this difficult undertaking easier. Before creating any soundtrack you will receive guidelines on its development: the character of a given game or dynamics. Hold on to them and in case of doubt or your own ideas, consult your supervisor. This will help in avoiding a conflict between two artistic visions.
Music in the opinion of many is regarded as the noblest of all arts. If you have a talent, patience to search for a job and an idea for a good soundtrack, you can create songs that will be remembered by many players for a long time.
How to become a Game Designer?
Game Designer is an occupation which is not only very prestigious, but also well paid. That is why many people connected with the computer industry dream of taking this particular position. What can you do to make our dream company hire you? What are the advantages of this position? Is it associated with any issues? To find out, please read the text below.
You will be required to design games with a difficulty level for a wider audience - they should not be too easy or too difficult. The designer also creates the concept of a game and the game type (he sets the game's background, so for instance he can choose a castle or a laboratory). Therefore, he should make every effort to ensure that games are associated with the latest trends in the market, which will gain the interest among users, and will bring financial success.
To become a computer games designer you should begin with expanding your knowledge about computer games and playing them as often as you can. Thanks to that you will be able to distinguish a good game from one of a lesser quality. Besides, only passion and commitment can make you a designer who has great results. Graphic talent and familiarity with photography are also absolutely necessary to provide projects that are characterized by creativity and interesting game content.
A course of study suitable for you should be connected to the human science (sociology, philosophy), or artistic areas (for instance graphic designs). It is also important that you are well acquainted with the realities of the game market. You might be interested in the post-graduate studies organized by the European Academy of Games in Poland. They are perfect for those who are interested in game design - there are courses such as script writing, video game designs, the basics of psychology and marketing. You can attend these classes in Krakow.
Undoubtedly, apart from good earnings and job satisfaction, this positions has other advantages like flexible working hours. You often appear in the office about 10 o'clock and after the busiest hours you have a chance to leave the company early.
Remember that this is a job that requires considerable commitment, working long hours and the creating many amendments to projects. You must bear in mind that the beginnings are not easy - you start with simple projects, often created for companies with a low financial effort. If you are creative and you do well in this kind of projects, you will have a chance to climb the career ladder. In this position talent is not the only important thing as systematic work is also required.
How to become a Video Game Artist?
Video games can be not only a form of entertainment, but also a good way to make money!
The "video game art" section, that employs the creators of computer games, deals with a wide range of activities. That is why each member of that team is a specialist in certain subjects. If you have never worked in a video game art section and it is your first contact with the following area, bring samples of your work to convince the employer about your skills. Also, pay attention to the expectations of the company regarding the candidates applying for a job at a given position. This will help you to roughly determine whether you have the desired abilities and capabilities. Below you can find groups of professionals that we are looking for. If you would like to apply for one of those positions, remember to emphasize in your portfolio that you have mastered the skills that are expected.
A key advantage, which highlights your application is a proper understanding of the animation's character. When applying for this position you should also know the 12 basic principles of animation. Our advice: do not complicate your portfolio. You should keep in mind that a simple work done properly is more valuable than an ambitious project done incorrectly.
We are interested in specialists dealing with models with a simple net sketched (low poly) as well as models with rich details (high-poly). Innovation is an extremely valuable feature, and therefore we will gladly look at works presenting static scenes, as well as those that focus on the dynamic form. You should remember about attaching the texture to the model when you send samples of your work, because on the basis of these two materials your modeling skills can be evaluated. Please send us the file at a reasonable volume - downloading a 'large weighted' video might take a long time.
This position requires a rich imagination. Your task will be to present an interesting concept, to express the appearance, character and mood of a hero. In your portfolio, focus on the creative process and commitment that you put into the project. In addition to the final drawing show us the collection of sketches and original concepts of your work. It is worth mentioning that the knowledge of the theory of drawing, composition and anatomy will also be useful. The work that you present to us, should be a combination of technical ability with artistry and individual character of the creator.
From candidates for this position we expect a good understanding of the basics of designing the UI. Demonstrate the ability to design a complex interface. Try to create icons which are clear and legible for the user.
Working in the game industry requires education, so do not learn this craft sitting at home in front of the manual. You can gain this knowledge during a 4-year study or one of the specialized courses, which are currently organized by the most of the universities. It is also important to focus on building a solid foundation and developing practical skills which you can do even by working on a student project. It does not have to be an advanced project if you get to learn independence and creativity while working on it.
Below you can find things that should be avoided in the portfolio:
- The use of colloquial expressions,
- Willingness to take any of the positions offered by the employer (a sign of desperation, which is rarely associated with high competence of the candidate),
- Sending files which take a long time to load,
- Placing in your portfolio sketches which are violent or erotic.
It is important for you to look through these guidelines before sending your application to the potential employer. After all, the first impression is the foundation and a lot depends on it.