In today's technologically advanced career world, there are more and more opportunities available for individuals who have that knack for everything computer related. Recent strides in this focus area have allowed for a Bachelor's degree in video game programming to become available to students. Market trends related to video gaming ensure that once you have your bachelor's degree you will have many job opportunities available to you. Continue reading below to determine what you need to do to complete your educational degree program, what opportunities you will likely have after obtaining your degree, and other information that is pertinent to this career path.
Before deciding on a higher institution of learning, you will want to do your homework and ensure that the school you would like to attend offers a Bachelor's degree that fits in with your career plans. While it is possible to complete your degree program through an online school, you may not receive adequate hands on training with this format of instruction. A traditional, brick and mortar school will make it possible for you to work alongside other individuals in your field of study and to collaborate with professors who are trained in the area.
In addition, a four year Bachelor's degree in computer programming will allow you the option of completing a practicum component before completing your degree requirements. This will give you the chance to actually show what you can do in a realistic job setting. When it comes time for you to search for employment as a game designer, this practicum component will give you an edge over fellow job seekers. Keep in mind, during this practicum component of your education, you will actually create a game of your own, which will demonstrate your abilities to your potential employers. While you must make a decision of which institution to attend based on your specific needs, you will certainly want to consider which school will allow you to receive the most beneficial training.
To be successful in this field you will surely need to have knowledge of, and a thorough training of, computer skills that are above the average individual's skill base. In addition, your bachelor's degree in game design will likely make it possible for you to transition smoothly into the career world. Your coursework will teach you to correctly use technological terms alongside three dimensional animation effects, photography, graphic design, and special effects as you create your interactive games. Although an individual's prospective talents, ideas, and visions are ultimately what will make or break his career that person's educational training in gaming techniques will also largely factor in.
If you have a desire to work for a well-known gaming company, then you should consider attending a career night geared for this industry. This will allow individuals with a degree in this field to converse with industry professionals and to present their resume and a sample that shows their capabilities. It will be important that you can demonstrate your ability to create video games that appeal to a wide range of demographics and age ranges.
Pro#1: Creativity – One of the best things about being a computer game programmer is you get to work with extremely creative people. You can work with other programmers that can help you improve upon your skillset as a programmer.
Pro#2: Work Environment – Most gaming companies have a pretty relaxed work environment. The company typically hires individual’s right out of college and the setting isn’t as professional as you would find at most companies.
Pro #3: Salary – The average national salary for a video game programmer is $63,573. Top game developers and software engineers can exceed well over $100,000 per year. Because of this most companies do everything they can to keep and retain their employees so they don’t go to a competitor.
Pro#4 – Work at Home – Sometimes you have the ability to work at home. This is great for some that don’t like work environments and would rather be at home programming.
Con #1 – Work Hours – As a computer game programmer you won’t exactly work a typical 9 to 5 job. Lots of programmers work long hours exceeding 70+ hours per week. When deadlines come up often they are the ones that are working late into the night as well as on weekends.
Con #2 – Positions – The US has a limited number of top gaming companies. The competition to get employed is high so it is recommended that you take any position you can at the company you want to work for and work your way up to the position you want.
Con #3 – Rejection – Like with most careers you’ll need to get comfortable with rejection. By rejection I mean that not everything you do or work on will be successful. Sometimes you can work months on a project only to realize it isn’t going to work or that part of the videogame perhaps was canceled.
Con #4 – Education – I know this really shouldn’t be a con but one of the things you’ll find out really fast in the video game industry is there are a ton of really smart people. These individuals all have advanced degrees so your Bachelor’s degree in computer game programming probably isn’t enough. We recommend that you continue with your education well after you gain employment. There are too many software programs to learn and there will always be someone new the company hired that has a skillset that is better than yours.