Is a game design bootcamp right for you? – Forbes Advisor
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The gaming industry has exploded with growth over the past decade. As a result, game development companies are constantly looking for ways to grow their talent pool with game designers and developers.
Many employers turn to game design bootcamps to fill essential roles within their teams, which include designers, programmers, and developers.
The following sections provide an overview of how these game design bootcamps work and the types of opportunities they provide for graduates.
What is a game design bootcamp?
Game design bootcamps teach students the tools and techniques they will need to succeed in the video game industry. Since the gaming industry involves various elements, every bootcamp is slightly different.
For example, some of these interactive short programs focus on the creative components of game design, such as illustration, animation, and storytelling. Other bootcamps focus on the technical aspects, focusing on the actual programming and coding of the game.
What jobs are available for Game Design Bootcamp graduates?
After graduating, most students land positions at gaming companies within six months. The tasks of video game design professionals vary by organization, location, and other factors.
Generally, there are three types of positions available for game design bootcamp graduates: video game designer, video game programmer, and video game quality assurance tester. Each focuses on different aspects of video game production, but all provide the experience needed to build a successful career in the video game industry.
Who Should Attend a Game Design Bootcamp
Game design bootcamps teach real-world skills and techniques, and most don’t require students to have previous experience or education. Completing one of these bootcamps might be a bit more difficult if you don’t know coding languages like C++ or Java, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible.
Many people use game design bootcamps to transition from their current industries into the gaming industry. If you are passionate about game design and see yourself working for a game development company, there is a bootcamp for you.
How much does a game design bootcamp cost?
Overall, game design bootcamps are more affordable than traditional bachelor’s degrees in computer science and similar fields. Most bootcamps cost between $500 and $15,000. That’s far less than the $37,400 average undergraduates spend on four years of college tuition and fees.
If you’re considering a game design bootcamp but are hesitant to spend a large amount of money, ask your potential program about scholarships and payment plans. Many bootcamps allow students to pay their tuition in installments to help make the total cost of the program more affordable.
How to enroll in a game design bootcamp
Enrolling in a game design bootcamp is easy because most don’t involve any prerequisite courses or experience. The hardest part of signing up is selecting a bootcamp and how you want to learn. To help you decide which program is right for you, we’ve created a list of questions you should consider before applying.
Important Questions to Consider Before Enrolling in a Game Design Bootcamp
- How long of a program do you want to attend?
- Do you want to participate in a part-time or full-time bootcamp?
- Do you have a preference regarding the area of game design you wish to study? (for example, design, programming or quality assurance)
- Who are the instructors who give the lessons?
- Does the bootcamp have a strong alumni network?
- Are the latest bootcamp graduates currently working in the field?
Once you’ve decided on the type and length of game design bootcamp you want to attend, it’s time to start applying.
Most bootcamps require applicants to complete an online application and provide some personal information. After submitting an application, a bootcamp representative should contact you to discuss your interest. The final step is to complete all final paperwork and prepare for the first day of class.
What a game design bootcamp teaches you
Unlike traditional college courses that focus on the theory behind game development, game design bootcamps emphasize real-world skills and applications. Bootcamp students learn everything from software development and programming languages to game design and architecture.
Below, we take a closer look at the elements of game design you can expect to learn from a bootcamp.
Throughout a game design bootcamp, you’ll learn about many elements of the game design process, including software development. Students explore the various systems used to create games and learn about popular industry tools. Here are some of the platforms you could use during your bootcamp:
- Adobe XD
- Unreal Engine
- 3D Studio Max
Coding is another important skill that game design bootcamps teach. Coding languages like Java and Python are important to understand, but most bootcamps focus on C# and C++ first, as these languages are the building blocks of most games.
For students who want to learn more about the design side of game development, a bootcamp can be a great way to learn. Some game design bootcamps teach animation skills such as keyframes, character interaction, and choreography sequences.
Depending on your level of involvement in character development, you can look for a bootcamp that teaches students how to draw and produce wireframes throughout the character building process.
Although many bootcamps don’t directly teach soft skills, bootcamp students still learn how to communicate well with others. In addition to improving your communication skills, you can become a better multitasking and critical thinker by attending a bootcamp.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Game Design Bootcamps
Will a game design bootcamp help me land a job?
Yes, although there are no guarantees, a game design bootcamp can help you land a job. Many companies hold game design bootcamps in high regard because bootcamp programs are typically intensive and focus on the fundamental skills that game designers need.
Is a game design bootcamp worth it?
Yes, especially if you want to transition into the game design industry. Bootcamps provide hands-on experience and teach real-world skills in just a few months, making them a great alternative to longer, more expensive traditional degrees.
Does game design require coding?
Coding can be useful throughout your game design career, but it’s not essential to landing a job. Many game design roles focus on art, creative writing, or user experience and don’t require knowledge of programming languages like C++ and Java.