Learning game programming worth it?

This is a discussion on Learning game programming worth it? within the Game Programming forums, part of the General Programming Boards category; Is it worth spending the time and effort to learn it? Considering the money and people involved in creating todays ...

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    Learning game programming worth it?

    Is it worth spending the time and effort to learn it? Considering the money and people involved in creating todays games?

    Long gone are the days when you could write a game on your home computer that could actually be good enough to sell. So whats the point?

  2. #2
    Student legit's Avatar
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    For the lolz :P.

    Only joking, but on another note, I'm going to try and learn game programming. Why? Because I enjoy programming and I have the patients to keep at it. 'nuff said!
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    and the hat of int overfl Salem's Avatar
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    So you can only write a small game yourself, it still shows you're capable of doing something.

    If you're interested in a game programming career, then it won't hurt as a demo of your skills come job hunting time.
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    Not to mention game programming is some of the most difficult programming you will ever learn. If you want a challenge/test of your knowledge, try writing some simple games, then step it up to something harder. That's not to say there isn't anything more difficult than it, though.

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    Many interviews will most likely ask if you program in your free time. Game programming is usually what people do in their free time and even if it will never sell it might land you a job. The fact that someone programs at home on their own time shows that

    A) the candidate is interested in more than just a paycheck
    B) the candidate has inititiative since no one is forcing them to code on their own at home
    C) the candidate is interested in continually learning new things and honing their skills
    D) the candidate is not going to rely solely on what they learned in college to further their career. Technology changes and with it the programmer must as well.
    E) the candidate demostrates good problem solving skills - demos are a great way to show how you approached a particular problem
    F) if the candidate actually finishes a game or project it shows that they have the endurance to see a project through to the end. This is extremely important. Plus the people interviewing the candidate probably have several unfinished projects of their own on their drives and when they see a candidate with one or two finished projects it speaks volumes about their skills and also is worthy of respect.

    You don't have to just do game programming in your free time, however. You can pretty much program anything whether it be some web-based project or an application that helps you be more productive at home, etc., etc.

    When a candidate programs in their free time the interviewer takes notice. School says you are able and have the inititiative to learn and coding in your free time says you are willing to put it into practice and have the initiative and the drive to program. At school you have to program to make the grade. At home you don't have to. Doing something when you don't have to or aren't forced to usually points to the fact that you enjoy doing it. People who enjoy their craft are more likely to stick around for the long term and be productive throughout.
    Last edited by VirtualAce; 07-04-2009 at 11:22 AM.

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    I can see why those people who have the desire and patience would choose game programming, it would seem to be more fun than writing some run of the mill database program.

    Do employers really take notce of peoples home projects? As it appears to me they only seem to take notice of qualifications and more commercial experience. Its seems you cant get a junior or trainee job with out experience.

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    Super Moderator VirtualAce's Avatar
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    They don't take them as professional experience but they do notice them.

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