TIPS FOR GETTING INTO THE INDUSTRY SO YOU WANT TO BE A GAME DEVELOPER? Paul Wedgwood CEO and Game Director @PaulWedgwood KINGSTON UNIVERSITY – 2 NOVEMBER 2011
About Me 1986: Expelled from school 1987: Disqualified from driving 1989: Achieved no qualifications, whatsoever 1991: Declared personally bankrupt !!! 1998: My first business was Dissolved omfg 1999: My second Business was Struck Off ffs 2003: Achieved Worldwide Critical Acclaim & Commercial Success!
About Splash Damage Founded 2001 Expertise: Multiplayer Actions Games with Depth Over 330 Awards and Nominations Average rating of for all titles..and most recently, a worldwide #1 hit!
No experience required All major developers hire inexperienced staff Pursue your obsession Only apply to your dream company Take whatever role you can get Better to be a play-tester at Splash Damage …than Lead Artist at Naff Startup UK Ltd Or start Naff Startup UK Ltd!
Be Aware of Trends! The rise of smartphones and tablets …and the return of the desktop A new digital distribution model – a revolution! New models – F2P, C2P, Subscription, PWYW, & IAPs Greater opportunities than EVER for Indies & Modmakers
Case Study: Paul Greveson BA (Hons) Computer Arts at University of Abertay Dundee BA (Hons) Computer Arts at University of Abertay Dundee Portfolio included a selection of high poly and low poly 3D models Portfolio included a selection of high poly and low poly 3D models Took the SD art test and was rejected Took the SD art test and was rejected Applied again after incorporating advice from SDs Art Director Applied again after incorporating advice from SDs Art Director Helped create Brinks character customisation system Helped create Brinks character customisation system
What Youll Need (For Artists) Create a portfolio website to showcase your work Be selective about what you show Your site will be viewed by Busy People With Little Time Pick your best and most recent work Consider specialising in the field that fits you best 3D art, concept art, animation, etc Join an art forum or website Peer reviews are a great way to get your work in shape Art competitions hone your skills and provide portfolio material
Case Study: Jamie Manson Studied Architectural Design & Computer Science Studied Architectural Design & Computer Science Created maps for Team Fortress 2, including cp_steel and cp_freight Created maps for Team Fortress 2, including cp_steel and cp_freight SD contacted Jamie after seeing his TF2 work SD contacted Jamie after seeing his TF2 work Created Security Tower and Founders Tower levels for Brink Created Security Tower and Founders Tower levels for Brink
Case Study: Dave Johnston 1 st MEng Software Engineering 1 st MEng Software Engineering Created de_dust for Counter-Strike Created de_dust for Counter-Strike Portfolio included screens and descriptions of known work Portfolio included screens and descriptions of known work Hired after reading about us on Shacknews.com Hired after reading about us on Shacknews.com Created Container City and Refuel maps for Brink Created Container City and Refuel maps for Brink
What Youll Need (For Designers) Make use of the many free SDKs out there StarCraft II, Half-Life, Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory Build a single player or multiplayer map Focus on a single, original twist and design around it Focus test your work Iterate, iterate, iterate Showcase your work on the web The recruiter probably wont have time to load up your map Screenshots are good, videos are better
Case Study: Arne-Olav Hallingstad BA Computer Science at University of Oslo BA Computer Science at University of Oslo Created Last Man Standing mod for DOOM 3 and Weapons Factory Revolution mod for Quake 4 Created Last Man Standing mod for DOOM 3 and Weapons Factory Revolution mod for Quake 4 Portfolio included code samples from mod work Portfolio included code samples from mod work Applied at SD twice before getting hired Applied at SD twice before getting hired Helped write Brinks S.M.A.R.T. freedom of movement system Helped write Brinks S.M.A.R.T. freedom of movement system
What Youll Need (For Programmers) Create a website to showcase your work Focus on showing off finished projects Tech demos, game mods, iOS games, Flash games, etc Use code samples to show off your style and skill Need more material? Find and join a mod team! Many mods are in need of programmers Closest thing to actual, factual game development
Our Indie Start - Q3F High Quality Total Conversion for Quake III Arena Most popular platform Hugely active team Highly professional Worldwide success Real-Life Interaction
Tips for Successful Indie Games & Mods Dont just make a mod Shoot for an AAA total conversion or a stunning mini-game Start, as you would a professional company Talented people are your greatest asset Run a mod or indie team as a professional studio Study every waking minute (Gamasutra.com was good) Practice community management & PR Make a name for yourself Finish it!
Where Can I Start? Uses venerable idTech 3 Uses venerable idTech 3 Lots of active players Lots of active players Completely free Completely free Uses more recent idTech 4 Uses more recent idTech 4 Supports huge outdoor maps Supports huge outdoor maps Its cheap! Its cheap! Mod Toolkits available on splashdamage.comsplashdamage.com Lots of editing documentation at wiki.splashdamage.comwiki.splashdamage.com Active editing community in our forums
Conclusion – Go for AAA Constant self improvement Focus on your real passion Create a killer portfolio Only pursue your dream companies & titles If unsuccessful, get feedback, iterate, reapply Dont compromise on where you work Never stop studying.
Think Youre Ready? Were always looking for exceptional talent Current list of positions, benefits, and more advice available at www.splashdamage.com/careers