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Development Day 1(Well, Not Really)

Not too long ago I came across this site, and just a few days before came across this helpful post. After reading it, and fully understanding and accepting what was being said, I realized I didn't have a blog. I was going to use Wordpress, but I decided to use this one.

My love of gaming began when my parents first bought me a copy of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. I didn't know then, but that game would become a huge influence on me later on. A few years later, I got a demo of Metal Gear Solid for PC and decided to try it. When I finally got the full version of the game and played through, it was absolutely awesome, the perfect blend of game play and storytelling was something I was only beginning to experience. This too, would become another game that would have a lasting impact on me. Even though I didn't know how, I began writing video game dialog and mapped out an entire world. I would have notepads full of little lines, ideas, and game play mechanics. I decided that I wanted to make video games, and to do that I needed to purse a Computer Science degree. When I started high school, if you asked me what I wanted to do for a living, "game programming" would be my answer. I took introduction to programming in HS, and picked it up quickly. When it came time to choose a college, I just the one I thought was best, and my journey into game programming began.

Along the way I met some good people, and I started to think seriously about what I wanted to do. You see, I think at some point I was living in a fantasy world if you will, and refused to acknowledge the reality I was in. I wanted to start my own video game company right after college, however, I wish someone would have hit me over the head, because really, it wasn't possible at that time. I had no money, and it would be hard to tell my parents, "hey, instead of finding a job, I'm going to start a company with no business plan, and see how long that lasts". I was arrogant, and thought that as long as I did well in my programming classes I would be okay. Well, school come and went, and I ended up jobless. Going to university wasn't an option because you see, from college you could transfer to university in the 3rd year. Based on what my friends told me, it was hard because the college left so many topics out. I didn't want to go and end up failing, I wanted to start from year one, but to do that, you needed certain HS classes. Which meant, I had to job search, and then go to classes at night. After a year or two, I began seriously questioning what I wanted to do. I didn't have a CS degree, so no company would even offer me an interview. Life became harder, because I put so much effort into pursuing what I wanted only to have to come crumbling down.

I started volunteering my time to a small organization, and created a small application to manage phone messages for them. I had two jobs, but both were short term. It gets depressing sometimes, because becoming a game designer isn't easy. Even having a personal project is no certainty that you will get an interview. Video games was what I wanted to do, no matter how hard it was, I was going to put in the effort. One post I agree with is this one, if these people could put together playable games within a month, or some cases a weekend, why couldn't I? There was nothing stopping me, and these guys now have something to put on there portfolio. The time to stop moping around and saying "What's the point?" was over.

While job hunting, I decided to start my goal of game designer over, and this time think small. I liked Java, and Eclipse was a solid IDE. So, I decided to get serious and create my own text adventure game.

Late in March I wrote my own Java package for managing my game. It including classes and interfaces that would manage Characters, Inventory, GameObjects, and Weapons. I decided to pull the universe I created and update it a little. You see over time, I was influenced not only by games, but a whole new set of topics, such politics, and national security and even movies. With all those in mind I created the early stages of what would be my game universe. My main character is highly influenced by Solid Snake, and many male action heroes from movies. I even began creating daily logs to track my progress. Right now, I'm currently writing the game document(more on that later). On a happier note, I even recruited a good friend to help me along the way. So now my game form one developer, is now a game from two developers. So far it's been a great learning experience, because you learn a lot about yourself. I understand it's not a real world environment, but, doing a project this big brings out certain traits that otherwise would have been hidden. I've learned not to get angry too quickly when I run into a problem, and patience. Often times when I work and run into a problem, I'll take a break, maybe exercise, eat, and when I come back fresh, say "hey, what if I do it this way?".

I really hope this is the start of something special, and I hope it at least gets me noticed enough to get an interview. On another optimistic note, I can add this, and another personal project I worked on to my resume. To be quite honest, I don't know if personal projects count for something, but it's better than moping and having nothing. To me every project was a learning experience, and doing these personal projects helped me a lot.

That's it for me today. I'll check in later next week, and I hope to update this blog at least once a week.

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