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How to Get Started With a Career in Game Development

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You can launch an exciting career in video game development, but first, you’ll need to learn a few things about the industry before you start your journey.

Game developers must think about a range of features – including animation, art, input, mathematics, physics, rendering and shaders, among other aspects of development. These features may seem like they have no correlation to websites, but there are some similarities.

If you’re an aspiring developer, you may also believe that game and app development are two entirely different animals. However, they’re   similar.

Game development isn’t as different as you might think. By understanding some of the facts about the field, it’s easier to separate misconceptions from facts.

Get Started Developing Basic Games for Practice 

The primary difference between game and app development is the programming environment. The app development environment, for instance, is highly specialized.

You can choose from a range of programming editors, but if you’re an app developer, you’d probably tend to stick with a favorite. Typically, this will be the one that works best with the kinds of projects that you usually work on.

The same concept applies to game development. Typically, you’ll find an editor that works well with the game engine that you usually use for projects and a favorite coding tool, such as Visual Studio.

Be Sure to Master Unity, Unreal & Other Game Development Platforms 

If you’re going to get into game development, you need to get familiar with the big players in the development arena. A game engine is a framework that runs the game.

It enables you to work with features such as physics, collision detection, rendering and artificial intelligence. There are several game engines on the market, for example:

  • AppGameKit
  • GameMaker
  • Unity
  • Unreal Engine

Some game engines – such as Unity and Unreal Engine – are available as freeware. Freeware game engines are an exceptional learning tool for K-12 learners or entry-level gaming programs.

Know What Area of Game Development You’d Like to Be In 

Not everyone’s a crack coder. Still, you may find the artistic aspect of video game programming very intriguing, and that’s fine. There’s a place for you in the game development universe.

There are several What-You-See-Is-What-You-Get (WYSIWYG) editors used for video game programming. Professional videogame development studios use WYSIWYG to work with the artistic features of their projects, so by learning how to use one you can become an important part of the team.

You’ll never land a development job, however, if you don’t learn how to work with the tools of the trade. Head over to BuildBox.com and try out their free WYSIWYG tool. The more experience that you have working with gaming tools, the more likely it is that you can land a job in the field.

Alternatively, you may want to choose the better-known programming route for a career. If so, you need to start learning languages such as JavaScript, C++, C# or HTML 5. These are the main languages used in the gaming industry.

Programmers typically use JavaScript, for instance, for web-based games. You can learn to write code manually, and you should. Nothing’s worse than a coder that doesn’t know their craft inside out.

However, you’ll need to learn to work with an advanced programming tool if you want to work in the field and keep up with your peers. Accordingly, you should learn how to work with a popular game engine such as Unity to get your feet wet.

HTML 5 is another web-based programming language. Programmers typically use it for browser-based games, while they’ll use a language such as C++ for object-oriented programs.

Nurturing Your Creativity is a Must! 

There’s a strong case for creative thinking in digital game design. Yes. Video game design is typically appealing to people who are adept with technology. Nevertheless, it takes creative thinking to build entertaining, functional video games that offer a unique experience.

If you lack creativity, it may prove challenging to succeed as a video game developer. If you want to excel in the field, however, you’ll need to pursue artistic excellence – if you’re going to work on that side of the vertical. What’s more, you’ll need to prove your skills, so learn the tools of the trade and start building a strong portfolio as soon as possible.

Remember, however, to protect your eyes and your health when you’re working on game development. Set aside dedicated time to look away from your screens and rest them from the heavy blue light.

Get Connected: Network By Attending Industry Events

At some point, you’ll need to actually talk to a person to get a job. Like any other profession, you’ll need to network. However, some individuals who are exceptional with technical disciplines have trouble making a human connection.

If this sounds like you, don’t worry. You just have to reframe the narrative. To begin with, talk to people in the video game industry like their people – not like you want a job, or you want a pitch your next hot idea.

For some, networking is intimidating. Instead of worrying, think of it as talking to people and meeting people rather than networking.

Whether you’re a student, an aspiring studio programmer or an independent coder, you’ll need to learn to talk to people without sounding thirsty. So, bring your A-game, learn your trade and go set the world on fire with the blazing, new title.

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