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Old 09-29-2010, 03:54 PM   #1
Bgrizzmayne
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Exclamation Could really use some help! Web Design AND game development degrees/schools?

Hey all-

I'm currently enrolled in college at KState and hating it. I'm not passionate about anything that my classes involve, and I've just always been a very visual, creative guy.

I'm not great at drawing but no means a slouch. I've always had an interest in graphic design; learning photoshop is something I really love to do. I just have an "eye" for things. (I know everyone says that )

Anyways...school. Where to go? I know in the industry of game development, where you get your degree from isn't too relavant. But I can't watch tutorials and expect to get a job, I realize there is a need for some formal training, IN ADDITION to furthering my skills in programming, and all sorts of things. Ultimately, my product is what's going to define me as a developer.

But I don't know the best path. Is it majoring in animation somewhere? Is there any game development majors that combine elements of graphic design/web design with actual game animation or development? I'm just a hybrid...I'm not a concept artist but I'm not a programmer.

With that said, I have no programming experience. Any good books you guys could recommend? I'm not really sure where to start, or if I will like it. I'm not great at math, but maybe if the math actually applies to something more tangible, I could succeed.

Any help is appreciated!! Thanks guys.
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Old 09-29-2010, 05:00 PM   #2
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Hello B, you wrote:
Quote:
1. I'm currently enrolled in college at KState and hating it. I'm not passionate about anything that my classes involve
2. I'm not great at drawing but no means a slouch. I've always had an interest in graphic design; learning photoshop is something I really love to do.
3. Anyways...school. Where to go?
4. I realize there is a need for some formal training, IN ADDITION to furthering my skills in programming, and all sorts of things.
5. But I don't know the best path. Is it majoring in animation somewhere?
6. Is there any game development majors that combine elements of graphic design/web design with actual game animation or development?
7. I'm just a hybrid...I'm not a concept artist but I'm not a programmer.
8. With that said, I have no programming experience.
9. Any good books you guys could recommend?
10. I'm not really sure where to start, or if I will like it.
11. I'm not great at math, but maybe if the math actually applies to something more tangible, I could succeed.
1. It's not clear from your words what it is you hate about your college. A lot of folks just aren't cut out for college at all. Could be you're one of those. If you are hating the basic required courses all students have to take in order to get a basic degree, then maybe you're just not cut out for college. If you are hating the required courses for your degree, then maybe you're not cut out for that degree, but maybe you can switch majors without leaving that college. But if you have other reasons for hating that college, there's no telling if another college will be any better.

2. So you're saying your passion is "learning Photoshop"?

3. That depends on what you want to study. In number 5 you indicate that your passion may be animation?

4. If you aspire to animation, then I suppose some programming classes couldn't hurt. Are you saying you have a third passion beyond animation and learning photoshop, and that it's programming?

5. "Best" is subjective. Only YOU can determine what's "best" for YOU.

6. Web design: no. "Graphic design" is usually associated with marketing and print, so again: no. But if you want to look at "game development majors," then just Google and find some schools, and look at their programs.

7. You're a hybrid of what? It doesn't help us to advise you to only know what you're not.

8. Why do you mention that? If you are trying to decide which game career (if any) to pursue, you should read up on game careers (I'm sure this website has a lot of information on that -- and you can also find stuff on those careers on my site, and on IGDA.org, and by Googling). Then make a decision grid. I have an article on my site (see sig) that describes how to make a decision grid. It's article 70.

9. Wow, tell us what you're not, then ask us what books you should read! OK, how about "What Color Is Your Parachute?" by Richard Bolles. Also see article 8 on my site (see sig) for more good books.

10. All you're saying is you don't yet know what your passion is. So try stuff. Only by doing can you find out what you're good at and what you enjoy. We can't tell you what you're going to like.

11. Why do you mention that? When you're seeking advice, try not to throw a lot of useless facts at the advisors. Speaking of advisors, surely your college has career advisors, scholastic counselors -- get in touch with them, get some counseling and advice IN PERSON. You'll probably be glad you did.
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Old 09-29-2010, 06:10 PM   #3
Bgrizzmayne
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Thanks for the advice. The prospect of game design is a pretty new thing to me, so bear with me as I don't quite know the questions to ask. I'll ask a few follow-up questions if you don't mind.

1. Sorry I wasn't more clear- it's not that I don't like the college or my college experience as a whole. It's that I am not doing what I'm passionate about (something visual and creative). So I guess the answer would that I'm hating the required courses for my major. (I'm in a mix of business and nutrition classes, and a year+ of trying to stick it out, I really question if I want to continue.

Before attending college, I considered looking into a school with a graphic design program and making it my major. However after much dissertation, I decided I wasn't sure if that's what I wanted my career to be, despite being passionate about GD. It's not that I didn't want that to be my career, I just was unsure if I could put bread on the table being a graphic designer. Let me know if you have any more questions on that.

2. I guess I have enjoyed photoshop in the past; but in all honesty I haven't had that much exposure to things related to game design and development. I know the answer is to go get that exposure, which is something I'm looking into. Kstate's graphic design and art programs are less technology focused and more on art; I'm not really an artist. I immerse myself in creative projects involving technology. The community college where I'm from offers an associate degree in Game development as well as a few other certificate based courses, so I am looking into getting my feet wet with those, and then moving forward.

3. I guess it is clear that web design and game development are a little bit of different worlds. I have been thinking about career path a lot lately, and my thoughts were that I would become more proficient in graphics, coding, so I could code websites and design them too, making me a more marketable package. When thinking of this, I have always been a interested in animation, which led me to the thought of game design. So I guess the thought is school for web/graphic design and coding, or school for game development?

The schools I've looked at are Pittsburg Art Institute, Full Sail, and DigiPen. Digipen seems quite intriguing, and I have a little under a year to take some classes in programming and things that might better prepare me for that experience.

7. Hybrid of nothing I suppose. In the middle would be a better term. I'm probably not a talented enough artist to commit fully to concept art and the visual side of things; but not a math-head, so I don't know if I want to commit fully to programming. That's what led me to animation, it appears as though it's a bit of a mix; has the visual side, incorporates design, etc. But I am not really sure, that's something i'll have to find out, or perhaps someone can share with me.

8. I just mentioned that so people would have an idea of my starting point. I'm not sure if it's possible to go to gaming school when you haven't been programming games since you were 13. Just trying to provide a reference point.

9. Thanks for the rec, will have to look for that when I hit the bookstore tomorrow.

10. You're right- I think doing something creative, visual, and rewarding such as game design could be what I am passionate about. But I won't know til I try it. Or I could try it, like it, and then determine I'm not passionate about it. Finding out what you're passionate about is a long process; one that I'm willing to embark on for game design.

11. Again, thought i'd provide reference. I am not sure if you have to be a stellar physics or mathematician to succeed in programming. Maybe not, I didn't know.

Thanks for all the help, hopefully I provided some additional info.
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Old 09-29-2010, 07:27 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bgrizzmayne View Post
1. Thanks for the advice.
11. Again, thought i'd provide reference. I am not sure if you have to be a stellar physics or mathematician to succeed in programming. Maybe not, I didn't know.
20. Thanks for all the help, hopefully I provided some additional info.
1. You're welcome.
11. Then READ that information about game careers. Lots of info on my site (see sig), and there MUST be tons of it here on gamecareerguide, and there's also good info at http://archives.igda.org/breakingin/ and http://www.igda.org/breakingin2.0
20. I don't really need new info if there's no new question. If you still have questions AFTER you do your homework, just ask the new question(s) here.
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Making games fun and getting them done. www.sloperama.com

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