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Old 03-17-2008, 01:00 PM   #1
Podge
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Default Game Programming Demo's for Companies

Hi, just a question about game demo's/demo's. Just finishing off the masters course in Computer Games Technology at abertay (as well as working full time as a games tester!), and so when that is done, I will have a suitable demo (hopefully ) in C++ with Directx 9.0c to show companies.

For now, I have a few bits and bobs from my university courses, but these are written in Java. My question is firstly:

1: Is it a bad idea to record a video of these programs in action, rather than sending a jar file (and associated images etc), and send the video instead of the program itself?
My reasoning is that firstly, the person looking at the demo's would have to install Java 2.0, as well as Java 3D. I can imagine that might put off someone who is busy looking at many CV's. However they might think:
a) The demo is faulty or prone to crashing
b) They won't see any source code, and so may think it's been taken from someone else
c) The demo (for example flocking AI) doesn't actually work, but has been fiddled to look as if it does

Also,

2: Java demo's, for games programming jobs that want C++ - are these a bad idea to start with, or would Java demo's be suitable enough for games developer's? Or best to have a c++ demo complemented by some Java examples?

Unfortunately my undergraduate degree (software engineering) was almost purely java, and so switching to c++ has been a personal study while also trying to learn DX9.0c and the fun stuff like shaders etc

Cheers for the help!
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Old 03-17-2008, 02:35 PM   #2
yaustar
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1. No it isn't a bad idea. I would still host the jar file to be downloaded and played. If the company wants the source, code they will ask.

Personally, I would make sure it is my best work on show and doubly sure that it doesn't crash.

2. Tough question. I would honestly have at least one C++ demo in my portfolio somewhere although I don't personally see a problem with a portfolio with just Java demos as long as they show that you can program and construct software. The tests and interviews should be enough to check your C++ ability.
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Old 03-18-2008, 10:04 AM   #3
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If you are programming in Java, couldn't you just deploy your demos on a website as an applet/download and refer to them? I always find that browser plug-ins are less of a hassle to install. Alternatively, you could package an application into an installer that includes J2SE & J3D.
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Old 03-18-2008, 12:37 PM   #4
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Thanks for the tips! Very useful
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Old 04-18-2008, 12:02 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yaustar View Post
1. No it isn't a bad idea. I would still host the jar file to be downloaded and played. If the company wants the source, code they will ask.
Or they will decompile it, thus they will see the code, but not your beautiful formatting or naming conventions (unless you leave it un-obfuscated). My recommendation is to supply both, a video for them to watch, and the source code for them to look at if they wish.

Quote:
Originally Posted by yaustar View Post
Personally, I would make sure it is my best work on show and doubly sure that it doesn't crash.
I most definitely agree with this! Trust me, at work I am the guy who reviews applicants games & code to decide whether they should come in for an interview. It's better to say that you don't have a demo than to send in a poor quality one. Anything you do send should not only be functional but should have Polish. It doesn't even need to be a ground-breaking game - the last one I reviewed was a basic Sudoku j2me game, so nothing complex, but what it did do, it did well.


As for submitting a video that makes something look like it's working, but doesn't... be careful. I know I sound like a school teacher, but many of us have tried those things in the past ourselves, so chances are they will want to see the code for it, and if they find it doesn't work (or you refuse to send it) chances are they will assume you're trying to pull a fast one, and may well just move on to another applicant instead.
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