Home Forums Education, Training and Jobs Stuck in the middle of nowhere…

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    • #7406

      Dear all,
      I’ve been following GD for a while and, before making a few questions, I’d like to introduce a little myself. I’m an Italian guy, 23 yrs old and I’m living in Dublin since march. I studied IT at the High school and I’ve a degree in IT and music. I can say I’m good at programming, but I don’t actually have any engineering knowledge. Of course I love math and I’m good at it. I worked as a AS400 programmer in Italy (not a good point to start form, if you’d like to jump in the game biz) and now I’m a QA video-game tester here in Dublin. I’d like to become a game developer but I actually have all the paths blocked: I can’t get into a MsC because I don’t have enough computer science background and I can’t get a work because I don’t have enough experience. I’m learning XNA/C# by myself, following tutorials found on the web, but I can’t put this on the CV for sure. Due to my interests in development, I’ve knowledge in HTML, Php, CSS and MySQL, as well in Java, Python and, now, C#; again no working experience in this. I know I’m still young, and I considered go back to study and start a Computer Science Bachelor Degree, but it would take 4 yrs, and as I am late for this year, I’d lost another year.
      So, would you say, what do you want from us?
      I’m looking for a suggestion: what should I do to gain the experience to be considered for a job/Msc? Is there anyone I should work for as a Junior, even for free, where I could gain experience in game developing? I mean like helping local Indie developers in the spare time…

      I hope I didn’t annoy you too much :)

      Thanks in advance everybody!


    • #44536


      If you have previous programming experience (AS400), and are currently working in the industry in some capacity, then I think you’d have some chance of getting a "buy" into a second or third year of a 4-year comp sci degree. I wouldn’t guarantee it, but its worth looking into.

      What I would recommend is getting in touch with the careers advisors or admissions offices at DIT, UCD, Trinity, and all the rest in your part of the world, and tell them pretty much what you have told us.

      The fact that your being pro-active about it, and learning online is a good start, and there’s plenty that you can also learn from textbooks. To get up to speed on traditional software engineering fundamentals, I recommend you read through these books:

      "Software Engineering for Game Developers", John Flynt, http://www.amazon.com/Software-Engineering-Game-Developers/dp/1592001556/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1251847949&sr=8-1

      "Software Engineering and Computer Games", Rudy Rucker,

      They should give you a good grounding. Then check out

      "Code Complete", Steve McConnel,

      With that material covered, I recommend as much C and C++ (rather than C#) as you can sink your teeth into, with a focus on OOA, OOD, OOP.

      I’d imagine if your looking to get a "buy" into a second or third year at Uni, they will want to see a completed project, from start to finish, with documentation, showing a systematic, logical approach, so bear that in mind.

      Anyway, that’s just my two cents…


    • #44549

      Thank you very much jediboy!
      I hadn’t think of such an opportunity. I’ll do my best to increase my knowledge during this year to try to get into a second/third course year in computer science.
      I’ll buy the books you suggested as soon as I can.

      Thanks again!


    • #44551


      Glad to help. But before you go buying any of those books, or getting your hopes up, I’d still recommend you go and meet and greet the admissions officers / dept. heads at the uni’s that you are planning on applying to and run that scenario past them.

      But yeah, those books are great.


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