- This topic has 13 replies, 10 voices, and was last updated 20 years, 3 months ago by Anonymous.
August 12, 2003 at 3:01 pm #2823AnonymousInactive
I don’t know if this is the right place to post this, but here goes anyway.
My name is Stephen Kenny, I’m 19. I did my leaving cert in 2002 and failed my maths due to the fact I couldn’t concentrate as my uncle died the same morning as maths paper 1. And without the maths I was not offered any places, I have been working in a LAN gaming centre since then, and due to my anger, at the fact that due to my lack of concentration on one day everything I worked for meant nothing, I haven’t got into resitting my maths paper even tho the only thing it will take up is my time as I am still well capable of doing it, it was never a question of not being able as I have won the Intel Excellence award in the young scientist expo of that year and always score over 80% on tests in school.
The area I want to get into is either design or 3d modeling, obviousily in P.C. game development. I have limited experience in professional 3d modeling as the price of a professional package is out of my budget as to is the computer power needed to run one of those packages. I do have experience in freeware by-products of professional packages such as gmax and blender. I do know that with a little help I could easily learn one of the packages, as I could use Auto CAD with ease after a few hours of being exposed to it.
Now here comes the begging part, I need advice and help, should I bite the bullet and go back, do maths and then a course and take more time to get thru the system? Or is there someone willing to take on a fast learning, hard working apprentice type person and show him the ropes and give him a start in this industry?
August 13, 2003 at 12:34 am #9511Jamie McKeymaster
Hi there Stephen,
You might as well chance your luck with one of the colleges and explain your situation with them as the CAO isn’t going through until the start of September anyway. All they can say is no, but you never know you might be lucky and get into one of them that way.
August 13, 2003 at 8:50 am #9512AnonymousInactive
Do you have anything you can really sell youself on? Are you one of those kids who started programming c++ at the age of 12 for fun and havent looked back? If not, (and even if so), you really should do whatever it takes to get into college.
I’ve just finished, and I and know loads of folks who dropped out over the years. Nearly every single one of them is now considering or already doing some sort of degree by night.
Other options include some sort of plc course (not sure on the requirements on these), or waiting until your 23 and pursuing a mature student degree – basically they no longer look at your leaving results and you have to do a few interviews etc get in.
At the end of the day though, not getting maths is going to keep you down no matter who looks at it, and you really should look at doing it again, especially since you know you are capable of getting a good result.
August 13, 2003 at 10:56 am #9513AnonymousInactive
It seems like doing the exam isn’t going to be too taxing, and having it is going to make things a whole lot easier.
From a gamedev point of view, I’d say decide on your area (either design or modelling) and stick to it. Whether or not you decide to do the exam use your free time to learn about your chosen area. For modelling, get experience with professional packages. Budget should not be an issue, I’ve gotten hold of various packages such as XSI Softimage, Maya and MAX through academic and trial schemes. Just check out there websites. If you’ve a college with a good library nearby, they sometimes allow you to take out yearly membership, and many have pretty good sections on graphics and sometimes even a few gamedev books too.
August 13, 2003 at 12:11 pm #9514AnonymousInactive
The exam isn’t the problem, time is! I work from 10 – 8 seven days a week, I started programming with BASIC when I was 6 actually. The other problem is the fact I get bored of everything so easily, so I want to do everything now. But I think what everyone is sayin is that I should go to college, wat if I worked on a MOD and could demonstrate my skill that way?
August 13, 2003 at 6:51 pm #9515AnonymousInactive
My advice is that you should apply to Ballyfermot College for the one year games design course. Ive just completed it and I entirely recommend it. Its exactly the type of thing that you want to do. From that you can study the higher national diploma in games design also in ballyfermot. This would without a doubt give you a stepping stone into the games industry.
Ohh and also, they accept people with out a leaving cert. There was a guy in my class without one.
Just a bit of advice!
August 14, 2003 at 9:13 am #9516AnonymousInactive
Thanx Paul, I’ll look into now actually.
August 15, 2003 at 7:34 am #9517AnonymousInactive
If you submit your details through our Skills Directory we’ll include your profile for employers to see. Hamish, gamedeveloper.ie
August 15, 2003 at 9:07 am #9518AnonymousInactive
If you’re not willing to re-sit the maths exam then I would go with Paul Conways advice. It’s no use having the ability to make it if you keep moving from one subject to another (like I do). Taking up a course will give you the discipline you need to stick at it and you will learn much more in a year at college than you will as a hobbyist.
Besides, college is a great experience that everyone should take advantage of.
Having said that I would re-sit maths anyway just for the sake of knowing you got it. If you’re in the 80’s now you won’t need to put in that much work to pass the repeat.
As far as professional modeling software is concerned, I got a 30 Day trial version of 3DS Max from an Irish distributor that I found on the Discreet web site, and it runs fine on my clapped out PIII 700.
Hope this helps,
August 15, 2003 at 9:19 am #9519AnonymousInactive
I’m a graduate of the HND in Computer Animation and 3D Modelling from Ballyfermot, and currently I work full time in the games industry as an artist. I didn’t need maths for the course but you do have to submit a drawing test and be pretty good at art to get on and also pass an interview. If this is not an obstacle for you, get your skates on!! Good luck.
August 29, 2003 at 11:02 pm #9568AnonymousInactive
If you’re interested in design or 3D modelling then it’s perfectly feasible to get into the games industry without qualifications of any sort. Assuming you’re talented, determined, of sound mind and reasonably lucky that is. The luck helps regardless.
Ballyfermot do some good work but to be honest their best students come from the classical animation side of things. Here at Lionhead we have 2 (excellent) animators from BCHE. I travel over most years with my senior animator to scout for new talent and am nearly always impressed. In my opinion the one year games course (ludo?) is somewhat misdirected, at least the results aren’t always better than a determined 3D hobbyist can achieve in their own time. For one thing most hobbyists will have more powerful PCs. Of course you need your own hard/software but that’s not impossible, there’s some pretty good shareware out there.
The important thing is to build up an impressive portfolio and to be able to demonstrate your creative abilities to someone who’ll spare 30 seconds to look at them (that’s about all most submissions really get I’m afraid). It also helps if you have a website to direct people to once they get past that 30 second threshold. Never show anything you’re not 100% happy with, one bad image or design can easily overshadow months of good painstaking work. To see what the best people out there can do have a look at http://www.cgtalk.com it scares the shit out of me :-)
If you’re keen to go the academic route then by all means check out BCHE, there are some good lecturers there, but give some thought to general arts courses as well and do consider colleges in the U.K. if that’s not too daunting. Bournemouth do an excellent series of courses but I’m not sure what their entry criteria are.
Best of Luck.
August 29, 2003 at 11:17 pm #9569AnonymousInactive
Just wondering how important is it to be a good drawer if you would like to give 3d modelling a go?
August 29, 2003 at 11:40 pm #9570AnonymousInactive
similarly, how different is it to be able to draw a good picture to being able to program a good visual effect?
August 30, 2003 at 10:49 am #9571AnonymousInactive
Just about anyone can use 3D modelling software if they put their mind to it, in all honesty it’s not that difficult. What is difficult is knowing what’s right or wrong visually, knowing what makes the difference between being OK and being stunning. This only comes from observing the world, understanding how it’s put together and being able isolate and replicate the important bits. Just like traditional artists have always done. In the end we’re all producing images on a 2d screen, it’s all visualisation.
One way to develop this understanding of the world (and it’s pretty inevitable really) is drawing. You’re drawings don’t have to be brilliant in themselves but the more you observe and breakdown the world the better they become and the better your modelling will be also. To be honest my drawing is a bit crap now but because I’ve been using 3D software for so long I can model up stuff very quickly, almost as quickly as putting an idea on paper. The looking at the world and filtering of the crap is the skilful bit however you do it.
In short giving 3d modelling a go is easy being good at it is difficult. Drawing well isn’t essential but the process will help you understand what’s important in a scene or an object. Drawing well greatly adds to the strength of a portfolio if you’re fishing for work but isn’t essential. That said It does seem that all the best modellers are good general artists and skilled illustrators.
Similarly when it comes to programming visual effects. It’s not the programming that’s tricky (although I’m not a programmer I work with plenty) it’s knowing what makes a good visual effect in the first place, knowing what will have the desired result. A lot of our programmers have very good visual awareness and some are artists in their own right. However the job of designing a visual effect is always given to someone on the art team, it’s then concepted either on paper (drawing) or in 3D, whichever is more suitable, before a programmer has a stab at making it work real-time. In fact it’s more likely that the programmers will create a general ‘visual effects tool’ so that the artists can build effects alone when required.
All the best,
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