List of Contents:
–When do you guys meet? What do you do?
–I am totally new!!! I have no idea what Game Dev is or what to do!
–How do I start?
–I still don’t know what the difference of Unity and Unreal Engine 4 is.
–Ok, just throw me a random job and tutorial for it.
–How do we get help from the club?
–What does the club offer to us and what do you guys usually do?
–I want to be more involved in the club; how do I do so?
–I have an idea for a game, how do I find more members?
–I now have a team; how do I be a project leader?
When do you guys meet? What do you do?
We meet every Friday at Art Annex 107, 5 – 7PM.
During regular meetings, we update our game or learning progress to others at the beginning. Then, we usually play & talk about games. Some people work on their project. Some try to get help for brainstorming, some need technical help. The president sometimes brings in his GearVR, Oculus or HTC Vive to have people experience VR. Our rooms can fill up to 100 people, so with only 20-50 active members each meeting, you have a lot of space to do whatever you want. Afterwards, we usually invite everyone to dinner to get to know each other. Most events happen outside of regular meeting times, and you can find them by clicking on Events page.
I am totally new!!! I have no idea what Game Dev is or what to do!
Game Development is a combination of programming, art, music, writing, design, etc. Contrary to what people believe, you don’t need to learn to coding in order to make games! You can always focus on one discipline and contribute greatly to a game, and our club loves more diversity!
As long as you like it, game development is easy to do. All it requires is creativity. Most of us learned our skills from a few days to a month. It doesn’t take long to learn!
How do I start?
Start with this powerpoint. It shows a list of the roles in Game Dev – most people tend to stick with one or two. Try the tutorials listed in there. Don’t be afraid to try out stuff and switch around!
Even if you’re a non-coding job, although it’s not necessary to do it, don’t be afraid to learn the coding aspects of Game Development. It will take you only an hour to get introduced, and a few days to master it. At this level of coding, anyone is able to do it!
I still don’t know what the difference of Unity and Unreal Engine 4 is.
Unity is a lightweight engine that can run on most computers – it starts out simple. You can definitely make pretty stuff, but requires some work. It also uses C# to code, which is really easy to learn, but is prone to human mistakes (99% of your errors can be solved with 10 seconds of googling!)
Unreal Engine 4 is a heavyweight engine that is very pretty out of the box; perfect for people who want to play with level and environmental design. The only downside is it requires a decent computer (system requirements here) to run. It uses visual coding called Blueprints, which is also really easy to learn, and is pretty much immune to human mistakes, thus making your workflow smoother.
Both is perfect to learn as your first engine if you can run both on your computer. Most people here learn Unity as it has been here longer, but Unreal Engine 4 is also on the rise as more developers like its workflow.
Game Maker is also a notable mention – an engine that can only make 2D games, but is the easiest to learn out of most engines. It’s lightweight, free, (only Windows though), and you can make a game without learning coding in it.
Ok, just throw me a random job and tutorial for it.
The powerpoint includes tutorial links for any job, so feel free to try it there. It doesn’t take long to finish it! Some people still don’t know what to do after a year of attending our meetings; that’s ok! Take that time to do “games research” (basically just play & talk) and you’ll get a feel later on. We highly recommend you to start a tumblr blog, even to update us on your tutorials. It really keeps up the work!
How do we get help from the club?
Please feel free to ask us anytime on Facebook! We love to chat anything about gaming, including questions on anything you’re stuck with. Our weekly club meetings are also a great way to get help in person – just ask Michael the president to see who you can talk to!
What does the club offer to us and what do you guys usually do?
We provide plenty of workshops on game engines and 3D modeling. It usually happens concurrent with our Friday meetings in the other room, and they are announced on this site and on Facebook.
We also have quarterly Game Jams, which is a 12 hour event where you make a game from scratch and compete with others! It’s open to all levels of skills, even if you no idea on anything. It’s a fun event that boosts comradery and a great way to jump start a project (did you know a lot of famous games were started from Game Jams?)
Besides that, we also do funded trips to GDC and IDGA, which is a great way to see the outside world of game development. Job/Internship opportunities also are offered to us through other on-campus organizations and research labs.
We are also planning to invite local game developers and game company reps to come and do talks.
I want to be more involved in the club; how do I do so?
We are always looking for more officers! Our club’s officers are self-titled, meaning you can be attributed to a specific role (i.e. Head of Drawing Doodles), or be a general supporting officer (Marketing Officer, Supporting Officer, etc). Just let us know!
We have a group that plays Dungeons and Dragons weekly, and a group that plays LAN games often, and most of us go drinking every Friday after club meeting. We are fully open to have more members join us! Note: A lot of jobs are given because of socializing (not that we are giving jobs haha) so try to join us some time!
I have an idea for a game, how do I find more members?
First, you’ll have to think through your game’s idea clearly – people will have to know exactly what they’re getting into from the start. Some concepts drawn or a powerpoint is a good way to advertise your game. Next, you can ask for members either through our facebook page, during club meetings, and on this website under WIP Games section. The best way to get people is in-person during workshops or Game Jams since there are others who are learning, so they’re willing to contribute more often.
I now have a team; how do I be a project leader?
The easiest way to keep your team motivated is to show them you’re motivated – keep them updated through your blog or just chat with them. A lot of people are afraid of giving work, but when they have nothing to contribute for even a few days, they start losing focus and interest. So, immediately give them a simple job to start with (with a deadline!), and keep up with it. Communicate with them often, and ask about their opinions!
Some great communication sites are Slack and Asana, where you can keep track of every individual’s tasks. Github is great for multiple programmers in a team.
If you have any trouble in teamwork, Game Jams are a great way to improve it. Let us know too; we might have teamwork workshops in the future!