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Thread: Halp! (Career advice needed)

  1. #1

    Halp! (Career advice needed)

    I wasn't sure what to label this thread because I have a lot of issues at hand. I have a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Engineering Technology. It is a very broad degree that encompasses programming, web, electrical engineering, networking, and hardware. Besides all the technical topics, I constantly throw myself into the artistic side of things with my mods and knowledge of most of the Adobe CS3 suite. Also, I am teaching myself the new Unreal Engine editor as well as learning Japanese.

    Beside all of this craziness, I have a full time as Digital Media Coordinator (web, video, graphic, writing, and advertising) for two major radio stations in Seattle AND I write tech reviews occasionally for (generally post them here as well).

    Now that you basically know how insane I must be at the moment, since I have graduated from college in May of '07 all I wanted to do was be a part of the gaming industry, a writer/reviewer, or a designer at a tech company. I wanted to test games, but unfortunately a starting test job pays around $10 an hour and I make quite a bit more than that currently. Making games would be amazing, but I need to get my UT3 maps up before I can remotely apply for any of those jobs. Microsoft doesn't even want to touch me as they didn't recruit me out of college and the ol' Catch-22 of need experience to get experience is one of my biggest obstacles.

    I was hoping that some of you might be a bit older and wiser than myself and could give me some pointers. I have a portfolio website started and still have a lot of content to add to it. I was hoping that a few of you with experience wouldn't mind giving out some advice and even looking over my resume and website to let me know what looks good and what looks... terrible. Its touch to find a good middle ground for both my artsy side and my techie side.

    Here it is... I threw this together quickly on Saturday, so I know it needs to be cleaned up but at least it gives you an idea of what I'm shooting at.

    Also, it should be noted that I am not really looking for a job right this second since I am currently able to pay the bills (barely), but I do want to be ready for when I see some great job openings pop up. But if you know of some great job openings in the Seattle area feel free to pass them on. :wink:


    ~ DoomZ

  2. #2
    Wet Sanded
    Join Date
    Aug 2006

    Halp! (Career advice needed)

    Interesting post, and I'd love to help where I can... 3rd paragraph second to last line first word I think should be "tough". nd your link doesn't work. I'll keep an eye on this thread for ya. I'm very techy myself, but I love to design. That's why I'm going to school for Architecture.

  3. #3

    Halp! (Career advice needed)

    Maybe I'm blinded by the slight cold I have at the moment *cough cough*, but what page were you referring to (3rd paragraph...)? Also, good choice on the architecture degree. Many of my good friends took architecture and even though its a lot of math and late nights working on projects, you will have the chance to make butt-loads of money.

    Anyone else? Feel free to give constructive criticism. I'd rather have someone nitpick every detail than to just smile and nod. I'm concentrating on learning three different things at once, reading a book, as well as taking care of projects at work, so I'm sure there is something I missed on the site.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator tech-daddy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Plano, Texas

    Halp! (Career advice needed)

    first things first - you want to work in a visual medium, but your gallery is not done. Get it done.

    Working in the gaming industry, wow. I've heard of the insane crunch times, as well as the hours required. Not sure I would want that. Nope... I *know* for a fact I would not want that!

    Your resume needs to be more creative. Right now it reads like a script... you want to make an impression on someone to let you get your foot in the door, you gotta do something more than create a text web page.

    Here is an idea, when you get good with UnrealED, have your resume/credentials read aloud via an Unreal rendered character. Make the scene a chaotic mess of gunfire and battle. Futuristic and rough... make the character you model show off not only your current skill set, but what you are willing to do with your skills. Guy is riding a hoverbike, looking into the camera talking about how much you want the position... muttering about how many of these scenes you have put him in, how tired he is getting of being recast in more and more precarious positions... all in a hopeful shot of getting you gainfully employed at a company that shares your passion".... stuff like that.

    I read somewhere that an insanely high percentage of resume's die on the vine. You do *everything* in your power to make sure your's does not become a statistic ... and you do that by being different than the other guys that submitted. You have to make the HR/DevTeam want to look at your proposal (hire me) so, if you do go down that route, you damn well make sure it is quality work and not a hack job. Send it to them on a good quality CD. You'd be surprised at how broadband has made applicants lazy... "Here is my URL, go download it from there!" You want the job?!??! Make it as easy on them to view your work.

    I have a ton of people in the creative industry that I know, and a few at some gaming companies. I'll run a question or two past them and see what comes back. Holidays are not a good time to reach these folks... then tend to disconnect and decompress during the holidays.

    Best of luck!


  5. #5

    Halp! (Career advice needed)

    My gallery needs a lot of work, but its good to get advice before its done so I can make changes along the way. As far as UnrealED, I know how to make maps, its just making some that are really high quality for my portfolio and that people would actually use in their server rotations. As for rendering a cutscene with them talking thats a great idea... not sure if I can get that to work yet or not. My guess is that isn't built into UnrealEd, but who knows. Even if he isn't fully animated, I'm sure I could whip something sweet up in After Effects.

    I wish I had the holidays off... I spent some of my days off actually working from home. And while most of my coworkers are taking the rest of the week off I get to sit at my desk and do site maintenance. Woohoo!

    Besides the games industry, I'd love to design gadgets or user experience, but you pretty much need a Masters degree before they'll even look at you.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator tech-daddy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Plano, Texas

    Halp! (Career advice needed)

    If you have Crysis, I believe you have an editor there as well....

    you can do it!

  7. #7

    Halp! (Career advice needed)

    Unfortunately, I do not have Crysis. I have UT3 and Gears of War, both of which have the same exact editor, just different packages bundled with them. If I learn any other modern editors I think the one for Half-Life 2 (the name escapes me at the moment) would be good to know.

  8. #8

    Halp! (Career advice needed)

    Doomzilla, if you get Crysis and start making some mods or something for it I voulenteer to be one of the Beta (or even Alpha) testers

    and umm.. dunno how to say... Your website's index page looks AWESOME

  9. #9

    Halp! (Career advice needed)

    Haha, I don't think I'll be messing with Crysis anytime soon. I am suppose to get a Best Buy $50 gift card, so who knows.

    Everyone I talked to has two complaints about A.) There isn't enough stuff in the portfolio (I know, I'm working on it) and B.) Everyone tries to click on "ED" on the index page, but it doesn't do anything. To remedy "B" I put a little flash video on that page. I didn't put it in the portfolio because its just meant to be silly and its definitely not good enough for a portfolio example. Let me know what you think (you'll need flash enabled).

    Anyways, working on my first real map some more and hopefully will have it up in the next couple of days. I figure I'll offer it as a download, have some screenshots, and then maybe a YouTube video of me playing against some bots on it since bot scripting is pretty important.

    I've been working on a secret video to help get me up to speed in After Effects. Not sure when that will be done, but it should be pretty cool. Nothing fancy, but might be interesting to anyone that loves video games.

  10. #10

    Halp! (Career advice needed)

    I just got the Witcher and Crysis, so who knows. Maybe you'll see some maps pop up made by yours truly. I made my first Unreal Tournament 3 map. It is available for download in my Gallery on Its very simple, but its a good deathmatch map for those of you that grew up playing the old school FPS games.

    Or, I guess you could just CLICK HERE and it should allow you to download it directly.

    Let me know what you think. Maybe I'll post my next map in one of the main sections with its own thread, but I don't think this one is good enough. Who knows...

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