Do you have an amazing idea for a video game? Or do you just want to build a career around making fun games for the world to enjoy? Either way, you’re going to have to work hard to break into game development. The competition is fierce in this industry, after all, so you need to create a plan and follow it to have a chance at entering the fray. Ready to get started? Here’s how to get into game development and start building the career of your dreams.
Build Your Foundational Skills
You will need to build your foundational skills to have any chance of pursuing a career in game development. So, reflect on what types of games you want to make, and then get started in learning programming languages.
You can do tutorials and certificate programs on your own time. Or go all out by earning a bachelor’s degree in game design, programming, or computer science. Either way, you’ll want to dedicate several years to building a strong skillset and mastering at least one programming language.
Create Your Own Gaming Blog
While working on your skills, keep your ear to the ground to stay in tune with what’s happening in the game development industry. Don’t just read countless blogs on the subject though. Create your own gaming blog.
With that move, you can industry news, talk about your own coding journey, and even share info on any indie games you help create. Your gaming blog will grow with you, helping further your career while helping keep you well-informed about industry changes.
Work as a Game Tester on the Side
As you steadily build game development skills, seek out a job as a game tester. Although you’ll have to start at entry level, this position will put you in the right place to start climbing the ladder.
Since game design studios often hire internally, you can easily move from the QA team to development as your skills improve. Just make sure to share your career intentions with your coworkers, the company owner, and everyone in between.
Network at Major Conferences
Although working as a game tester will help you start to build your professional network, additional networking opportunities are a must if you want to move up fast. So, start saving up to attend major game development conferences, like E3, Blizzcon, and the Tokyo Game Show.
Don’t forget to attend smaller conferences in your own area as well. At every conference you attend, aim to build connections with three to five new people – and catch up with people you’ve met at past events.
Join Up to Create Indie Games
Creating your own indie game can help you quickly catch the attention of all the right people in the game development industry. You can also use the game as a key piece for your portfolio as you apply to jobs.
But working on an indie game on your own can prove daunting at best. So, to streamline the process, see if you can team up with several other people and create the game together.
Upon making it to the end of this list, you’ll have the knowledge, skills, and experience needed to enter the game development world. Your newfound professional network and completed indie game will help you make waves, too. Before you know it, you’ll be working on your first professional game, and then getting ready for its much-anticipated release.