I've wasted a couple of years on nothing

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22 Replies - 6723 Views - Last Post: 29 October 2013 - 07:36 PM

#16 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is online

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Re: I've wasted a couple of years on nothing

Posted 07 December 2012 - 08:32 AM

View Postxclite, on 07 December 2012 - 10:08 AM, said:

View Postjon.kiparsky, on 07 December 2012 - 09:16 AM, said:

It sounds to me like you've acquired a lot of knowledge about programming, but you haven't done a lot of actual programming.

I do this. Basically, at some point, you need to start building things. Reading about and exploring programming will keep you at the adept level forever - you have to get your hands dirty to build any real confidence.


Yep. When I started programming, I really felt like I had no idea what I was doing, all of the time. Now I generally feel like I have no idea what I'm doing, but wait, this problem is like that one, and I know how to do that, and I can probably figure out this bit over here, because I've solved it in this other language for this other project... and by the time I'm done recycling stuff I've already done before, there's not a whole lot of new stuff to implement.
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#17 AnalyticLunatic  Icon User is offline

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Re: I've wasted a couple of years on nothing

Posted 07 December 2012 - 09:02 AM

View PostDarenR, on 07 December 2012 - 07:57 AM, said:

Nothing is more satisfying then when you finish a project and you can say-- hey I made that---


This.

The reason for all the late nights.
All the headaches.
All the feels of helplessness.

That single moment when you remember WHY you do this.
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#18 farrell2k  Icon User is offline

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Re: I've wasted a couple of years on nothing

Posted 07 December 2012 - 10:26 AM

It's just a motivation issue. It's hard to stay motivated alone. I think at one time or another we all bought into the romanticism of game creation. It's not all you've imagined, I'm sure. Game programming is hard, and it is very easy to become discouraged. What you really need is motivation from others to keep you going. Maybe find a Meetup.com group in your area or something.
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#19 Martyr2  Icon User is offline

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Re: I've wasted a couple of years on nothing

Posted 07 December 2012 - 11:14 AM

If you go and find a project that is currently being done by others and join it, perhaps that might be helpful. You can contribute bits and pieces (bug fixes or small features) and yet not take on the whole task of a game yourself. You can often participate at your leisure when you have time and learn a thing or two from what the others in the project are doing.

Have you considered participating in a game development project on codeplex.com or github? Have you considered asking someone in our very own "Share your Projects" forum if they could use an extra coder? Sure you might not know much, but that is why you tell them up front and chip in where you can. If you are honest about your skills, but show you are eager to help, people may assign you small features that you can do yourself that perhaps they don't want to bother with. You learn and grow with a team.

:)

P.S. The looking up of terms and Googling is done by all levels of programmers. You can't expect to learn all the functions and the parameters they take. Especially at the rate some of these languages change it would be futile.

This post has been edited by Martyr2: 07 December 2012 - 11:17 AM

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#20 Arceopteryx  Icon User is offline

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Re: I've wasted a couple of years on nothing

Posted 07 December 2012 - 03:57 PM

*
POPULAR

I really don't know what to say, other than thank you for your responses, and press that silly little green + button.

You have been so unbelievably helpful. I seriously cannot thank all of you enough, for your time, and thoughts on this matter. I'll follow all of the advice i've been given. I've already checked out mono, and it does look pretty good!

I'll go see if I can find something on codeplex, I can help out with.

Again, thank you very much!
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#21 swgeek  Icon User is offline

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Re: I've wasted a couple of years on nothing

Posted 27 January 2013 - 11:10 AM

Ha! A couple of years is nothing. Sometimes I feel like my whole life has been spent that way :dontgetit:

One piece of advice and one note, as I have been down the same path and have learned some tricks to help control my tendencies:

First the advice:

If you feel the urge to change technologies/languages/OS/whatever do it. No problems getting a varied experience.
BUT - set aside some time, maybe one hour but up to you, only you know what you can stick with.
In that hour, keep doing things in whatever is the language you know the best. That gives you experience writing code and learning how to think about problems without spending time learning the language or tools. That is critical.
Does not matter if you never use that language professionally, the problem solving part is the most important part to get practice with.

Then the note:
The two years may seem wasted, but they are not (well, except maybe the WoW part). Even when jumping around you are learning skills and activating brain cells, much better then just sitting watching Jerry Springer or drinking with your buddies the whole time. I have screwed around a lot so don't know any one thing super well (but am getting better now thanks to the tip above), but have still gained a lot of little knowledge and experience so can work on pretty much any project.

I have a feeling we are very similar. My biggest problem is focus, so I set aside time each day for certain things (e.g. 60 mins working on a particular app, 30 mins learning directX) in just 5 min focused chunks or 10 min chunks at a time. Simple enough I can stick to the plan, but difficult enough that I can get things done. The right balance will vary from person to person.

Good luck!
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#22 Gantz  Icon User is offline

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Re: I've wasted a couple of years on nothing

Posted 11 February 2013 - 07:58 PM

You can't write a new beginning, but you can always start a new ending.
-quote from some writer posted by a hot boy on facebook that is most likely butchered.
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#23 aidenkael  Icon User is offline

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Re: I've wasted a couple of years on nothing

Posted 29 October 2013 - 07:36 PM

View Postlordofduct, on 07 December 2012 - 07:45 AM, said:

I'd also like to point out. MAKING GAMES and PLAYING GAMES are two different things all together. Like just because you like playing them does NOT mean you'll like making them. I [try] to make games, I have several friends who also do, a few even work for big companies like Activision/VV, Bethesda, 2KGames... we like playing games, but more importantly we LOVE building things. We're the kids who played with legos, erector sets, chemsitry sets, etc when we were 6 and 7 years old. We got our hands on boot-legs of 3d studio max and maya when we were 13 and 14 years old and started playing with them. When I played Sonic the Hedgehog as a kid I used to sit 3 inches from the screen banging on the start button trying to watch the animations in slow-mo to see how it is they accomplished it, and I devised it to be what turned out to be correct (sprite-sheets).

We like to investigate systems, make systems, and break systems. We spend our days trying to figure out what we and others enjoy about games, and how to exploit that. More than we think about playing games. I play a new game every week at minimum... but never beat them. I sit down and play probably 4 or 5 hours and then never look at it again unless I feel there's maybe a gameplay element I missed and need to revisit to understand. I play only to see what others are doing in the game industry. If you get lost in WoW but don't care to know WHY people get lost in WoW... well you might not like making games.




Good luck.


*bows* you sir, are exactly, 100%, unarguably correct. You win.
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