Think video games are just for kids? Read On

A Gamer’s Paradise – Game Design Schools

shawnee.edu/game-scholarship

Share The Image Above For Your Friends In Ohio!

A Gamer’s Paradise – Game Design Schools
By Robyn Tellefsen

“I started playing games when I was five,” says Steven Tanzola, now a 19-year-old sophomore at Champlain College (Burlington, VT). “By the time the Nintendo GameCube was released in late 2001, I had read almost everything I could about the gaming industry.”That’s why.

when Champlain announced its new electronic game and interactive development major this fall, Steven jumped at the opportunity to learn more about the game design industry.

“Champlain offers one of the few bachelor’s degrees in the nation modeled after the team-based game development industry,” says Ann DeMarle, director of the Emergent Media Center degree program at Champlain.

Students at game design schools choose to specialize in either computer game design or art and animation; working in teams of artists, animators, game designers, marketers, producers, and computer programmers, in order to create a game from start to finish.

More than Games at Video Game Schools

The coursework at video game design schools is more than just fun and games — beyond technical courses like computer animation, students also study traditional subjects like history, and spend time sharpening their research, writing, and storytelling skills.

“I’m taking courses like psychology, computer theory, and English, which will help me understand everything that goes into a game, not just how to do the graphics or write the story,” explains Caitlin Goss, 18, a Champlain freshman specializing in video game design.

The well-rounded video game design degree was a draw for Steven as well. “The program is diverse, which will help me get a job because I won’t just know about games; I’ll have all sorts of other important classes under my belt that game developers in the gaming industry are looking for.”

Game Design Schools Could Lead to High Job Scores

Job prospects for grads with game design degrees look good are more plentiful as students are groomed for work not just in computer game design or computer animation fields, but in film, video, Web, and interactive design as well. Thye may also foray into the fields of communication, educational training development, interactive development, and interactive writing.

With all the opportunities at game design schools available to those interested in the video game design industry, Steven is optimistic: “Video games are the future of entertainment, in and outside of the home.”

>> Fun Fact: The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a nearly 69 percent increase in the gaming industry through 2012. It might be a high scoring move to consider video game design schools.

To find college and career schools near you, surf http://www.CollegeSurfing.com.

� Copyright 2007
The CollegeBound Network
All Rights Reserved

Robyn Tellefsen is a frequent contributor to The CollegeBound Network. Learn more about finding a school or career that’s right for you!

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Robyn_Tellefsen/74294

http://EzineArticles.com/?A-Gamers-Paradise—Game-Design-Schools&id=604781

Learn The Facts Before You Download SimCity: Important Points

Simcity – Will You Build The Ideal City?

By Shaun Rogers

Start with a underdeveloped town (you name it yourself) and build it into a metropolis. Or, take on the challenge of rescuing a city overwhelmed with problems. Either way, taxes, zoning, crime, transportation, education, fire control, and other critical issues are in your hands.

Time is passing, and every decision you make has a future consequence. Your assistant, Dr. Wright, can help you make the right decisions. Just ask! Surprise catastrophes also threaten your growing city like fire, earthquakes, airplane crashes, even a giant Koopa who has a nose for industrial pollution!

Will you build the ideal city? Or will disgruntled citizens leave you with a ghost town?

SimCity was released for the Super Nintendo in 1991, being one of the first games released, right after the initial three (Mario World, F-Zero and Pilotwings). There really is not a whole lot to say about the story; You have been elected mayor of a barren land form (Plus some water) and your goal is to turn it into a Megalopolis of 500,000 citizens. Sound easy? It’s not.

Game Graphics:

The Graphics do fit within the game well and by themselves they are genuinely above average. The music is just simply great as the game play fits perfectly within the game structure. Making it all blend together very nicely, making this very enjoyable to play.

This game was not a showcase for the SNES’s graphic capabilities, nor was it meant to be. Nonetheless, there were some pretty cool effects here like when the seasons change every three months, thus changing the color of the forests from green to brown to white. The ”zones” do not look as they would in real life, especially when they are first built.

Airports and Seaports look pretty nice. It is also fairly easy to tell what is going on, which is always a plus for example when a zone needs Power, you will see a lightning bolt flash on and off it. Some structures are also animated, the Industrial Zones in particular.

Sound & Effects:

To be honest, until you get to Metropolis (100,000 citizens), the music is really kind of annoying but before that, the Disaster theme will be one of the best you will hear. The music does seem to fit whatever stage of development your city is in. Of course, when the music does get annoying, it really does not help.

Sound effects wise, there’s a really slim selection, besides the clicking of icons and the placement of zones. Sometimes you get a rail car starting up, or a Plane taking off (Or crashing down, right before that cool disaster music). Other than that, there is not really a whole lot to the sound effects through out the game.

While it is true that the game would really benefit from a mouse device, this game predated the SNES mouse by a year or so, so that was not an option. In spite of this, the game controls really well, and there’s quite a bit to do, even in the light of this game’s sequels, Simcity 2000 and 3000. You can set game speed, wreak disasters on your city at will (Though you can not invoke the almighty Nuclear Meltdown… ), or go to Dr. Wright for some advice.

Of course, in order to accomplish your goal, you will have to listen to your citizens, and give them what they want. The Icon interface allows you to access this info whenever you need it. As far as building your city goes, it’s really simple: Just click on the structure you want to build, find a place for it, push a button, and “BAM” there is your structure.

Story line:

While it’s not really a story, the basic premise was very original for its time. You are the mayor of a city that you have to guide to Megalopolisdom. Keep in mind that Story was not a very important part of video games in 1991, not that the premise would have been any different. But let’s face it, it is not the story that will keep you playing this game.

Overall Challenge:

Quite honestly, I’m of the belief that pulling off a Megalopolis the right way is the single toughest feat in all of video gaming. And the Big Money Code you probably already know about does not really make it any easier. As with any game of its kind, you have to go slow and build up a solid financial base before you can build at any sort of decent pace (As such, you spend a lot of time with the Game Speed set to Fast, just waiting around). The Big Money code can make this faster, but not any easier trust me.

Replay Value:

Admittedly, there is not a lot to do after you beat this game. Of course you probably never will beat the game, in the Megalopolis sense. If you get bored, you can challenge one of 6 scenarios, in which you are given a city with a problem ranging from the mundane (Traffic, Crime) to the near catastrophic (Nuclear Meltdown). You have a set period of time 5 or 10 years to make the situation right.

It is quite a challenge to stay within your budget for this amount of time, given that you will probably lose several hundred dollars a year, besides having to improve the city. Before you beat them, it’s fun to play the game a lot, but afterward you really get kind of sick of it.

Final Thoughts:

This was really the first Sim game that spawn all the others, and it is still one of the best. The functional graphics, ”Unique” soundtrack, great control, and of course, the disasters, make this a game you will want in your collection if you are a fan of the Simulation genre.

You won’t be disappointed. Overall this is just simply another classic game that exceeds on various levels. While it is not a terribly rare game like ”Final Fantasy III” or ”Mega Man X3” it is not a highly common one as well. (Though fortunately at least its price range is generally reasonable.) Its sequels may be bigger but the original title is still going strong…

For more reviews check us out at http://www.nextlevelgamerz.com!

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Shaun_Rogers/2323813

http://EzineArticles.com/?Simcity—Will-You-Build-The-Ideal-City?&id=9517138

Video Game Tester Programs – Are They Great Programs for You?

Video Game Tester Programs

Video Game Tester Programs – Why They Are Great Programs for Some But Not for Others
By Autumn Zajczerova

Why video game tester job programs which make some people thousands of dollars leave others with a bad experience. And what determines when these programs are, and are not, right for you.

First, let’s look at hunting for a traditional job.

Take a step back and look at ways to seek traditional employment. There are different ways to look for work when searching for any job whether it be a secretary, sales representative, or plumber.

One way is do it yourself. Search on your own for job openings, write your own resumes, and visit each location (at the expense of gasoline or public transportation) to apply and attend interviews. At the end of the process you keep your full paycheck, pay no one else anything to get a job, and owe nothing to anyone once you have a job.

This is the traditional way to obtain employment, and in many situations it’s still the best method today. One consideration if you collect unemployment benefits from a previous job, doing at least some of your job searching this way may be a requirement of the law where you live in order to not lose your unemployment benefits before finding a new job.

Another is work with a staffing agency or temporary employment agency. In this approach, they attempt to find employment for you from among hundreds of potential jobs. They may conduct your only interview or a small number of interviews, from which they gather the information needed to find the best matches for you among all the jobs in their database. They may also offer assistance in writing a master resume for their use, or a set of resumes from which they can select the best for each kind of job to submit to multiple companies.

Some agencies pay you, while charging the company needing workers both what you are owed and additional money to cover their fees. In this scenario, the agency is charging the business needing staff for providing workers as well as human resource management and other administrative services.

Alternatively, placement agencies and organizations which service freelancers may charge the job seeker: either a one-time fee per successful placement, or regular membership fees. One-time fees are more common among agencies providing permanent job placement, while membership fees are more common among providers of freelance work.

For example, freelance truckers can subscribe to services which give them access to hundreds of available shipping contracts they can select from. In this example, the agency aggregates and presents as many available contracts as possible to truckers for a fee; and leaves it up to the truckers to accept offers which best meet their personal, scheduling, and financial goals.

Taxi drivers may have a similar arrangement with a dispatch agency which charges a regular fee for use of a branded name, the service of forwarding call-in customers to drivers, and possibly use of a vehicle specially equipped to serve as a taxi. Drivers in turn keep the money they collect from their passengers.

How are jobs as a video game tester different?

The answer is, they are not any different.

With game tester jobs your options are the same.

You can do it yourself. Using your own experience, education, and training you can seek employment entirely on your own for free. You can search for opportunities using your own effort just as with any other kind of job. Directly contacting companies like Blizzard, EA Software, Konami, Riot Games, and others on your own will only cost you in your own time and resources.

All you need to do is compete directly with other possibly more experienced game testers; some of whom may already understand what hiring managers will be looking for, be familiar with these companies, and have a broader set of experiences to build their resumes and portfolios from. You won’t have to pay anyone to compete directly against other applicants who may be able to respond faster, with more powerful qualifications, and a better idea of what matters and what doesn’t to perspective employers.

Or, you could work with a video game tester job program. This arrangement works similar to the arrangement with staffing companies and freelance agencies for more traditional jobs.

In some arrangements, membership for the person seeking work is free. When this is the case, the game development company needing games tested is paying the company running the program to provide testers from a pool of applicants. You may, or may not, receive the same payment as when you work directly for the game development company. In either case, if your membership is free it’s because the game development company pays money to the program in addition to the money you receive.

In exchange, the company operating the program handles human resources or other tasks – such as screening potential applicants and only selecting those they feel are best suited to the interests of the game development company. These companies do not charge you, because they charge the game development company and that’s who they work for – not you.

Other arrangements more closely resemble freelance agencies for taxi drivers, truckers, message specialists, beauticians, and so on. You pay a membership fee and in exchange you receive services, the most basic of which include making available to you as many jobs as you can qualify for. Others may include: helping you develop and present your resume, matching you with the best contracts, and managing your portfolio for you. You pay them, either a monthly fee or a percentage of what you make, and they are working for you – not the gaming company.

So, why are video game tester job programs great programs for some but not for others?

And, how do I know when such a program is right for me?

The main reason is mismatching between the game tester’s goals and objectives vs. a program’s services and benefits.

Experienced game testers often won’t benefit from a program, but could still benefit from books or other resources which some programs come with. They should check first if they could obtain the same books and resources on their own faster, at less cost, or both. A program would only benefit the experienced game tester if paying a fee just to get these kinds of resources would cost less in time and money than going out to find the same resources on their own.

If you’re a professional game tester and feel jobs offered through these programs are a step backwards for you, but you still don’t want to search on your own (maybe you average $11/hr. but could average $35/hr. if you had help being more competitive), you could always work with traditional staffing agencies.

This is best if you are trying to move from an existing full-time game tester position to a better one, or are also open to other kinds of employment. The down side is they may poorly handle video game tester jobs unless they specialize in gaming. If your qualifications are strong enough, and your portfolio stands well on its own, using a traditional staffing agency is probably still your best choice if you’re serious about moving to a better game development position from one you already have.

If you’re new to game related jobs or the job market in general, then you probably would benefit from a program. College education programs are best if you seek degree training in the field. However, college programs seldom offer job placement at the end of the program.

If you’re concerned about actually obtaining a job once you get your degree, you may want to augment your college education by participating in a freelance video game tester job program during your off-time from school. Augmenting your college education with time spent participating in a freelance program is probably the best bet for someone new to game development.

Another issue is the way these programs are marketed. Matching workers with jobs for a fee is older than the United States; however the video game industry only developed since the advent of the information age. As a result, agencies which match workers with traditional work generally promote themselves by describing their benefits in a strait forward way. There is no need to convince anyone on the concept of a traditional job; they simply need to inform people on reasons they may want to use a staffing service as opposed to seeking employment on their own.

By comparison, video game tester job programs need to promote both the concept of being a video game tester and the concept of using a freelance program to do so. This is sometimes done using persuasive language combined with the best examples of potential income which (while accurate) may not reflect the average tester’s typical results.

Also some websites promoting these programs are not built by the company operating the program, but instead by 3rd party internet marketers who simply build a website using the most favorable and persuasive information before moving on to another site promoting a different product. It’s not that anyone is running a “scam” per se. The video game tester job program is in the business of matching potential testers with available work, while the affiliate webmaster is in the business of building as many websites for as many products as they can earn income promoting.

To make sure the website you’re reading gives you accurate, quality, information look for: citations from well-known game industry writers or trusted sources like Wikipedia, in-depth many paged articles, recently updated articles (indicating a site that’s maintained with the latest information), at least one page being older (an older terms of service or privacy policy shows the site has been around for a while), and so on.

Affiliate sites with these characteristics are likely to be providing you information you can trust and make sound decisions on; and to advertise and market proven programs, even if other sites promoting the same programs use more generic sales tactics.

What if you are not interested in college or a permanent career, you just want some easy money.

If this is the case, you need to look at the kinds of assignments you choose once you sign up for a video game tester job program. Most programs offer consumer experience (CE, UX, or UXA) assignments as well as quality assurance (QA) assignments, even if their website talks mostly about QA. However, when selecting, applying for, and accepting assignments be sure to read carefully what the assignment entails and the requirements you must meet in order to get paid. QA offers generally pay a lot more, but QA assignments are not as easy and nowhere near as fun.

QA testing is very tedious, can be frustrating at times, and requires a more committed mindset. Of course, if you see a QA offer which it looks like you’d enjoy doing (and it pays enough) don’t overlook it. Just understand QA assignments are not as easy as CE, UX, and UXA assignments – especially if your mindset is easy money. The upside to QA of course is that it pays more when you do fulfill all its requirements.

Autumn Zajczerova is Head of IT/IS Research for Atlantic Magnolia Solutions. At age 8 she began “experimenting” by altering computer code in simple programs, and today Autumn has over 26 years’ experience in computers and technology. Before she began playing video games herself in 1996 at the age of 16, Autumn was creating “small, generic, 2D Graphics games” as novelties for peers who had access to computers.

Autumn has been researching and writing online for over 9 years. She is adept at spotting opportunity, fully assessing the pros and cons of choices in the job market, and she knows a good find when she sees it.

Autumn discusses video game tester jobs on this site [http://www.autumnsvideogametesterjobscenter.com/]

which she expands and updates regularly. In her most recent update, she added information specific to college students aspiring to enter the gaming field. Her latest article [http://www.autumnsvideogametesterjobscenter.com/qa-tester-during-college-1.html] discusses the synergy of using personal time invested into freelance video game tester jobs to augment a college education in game development.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Autumn_Zajczerova/1914401

http://EzineArticles.com/?Video-Game-Tester-Programs—Why-They-Are-Great-Programs-for-Some-But-Not-for-Others&id=8617647

 

4 Tips To Help You Operate A Private Game Server

4 Tips To Help You Operate a Private Game Server

4 Tips To Help You Operate a Private Game Server
By Shalini Madhav

Setting up a private game server is easy, but running it is not as easy. If you want to get help with your server, the tips given in this article will help you. Running a server means you have great interest in this business and you want to see it succeed. Follow the tips given below if you want to see your server running at all times. Read on to know more.

Player slots

You can find a lot of servers there, but not all of them are set up properly. Actually, the owners fail to realize that their server is not meant for a large number of users. Their computer doesn’t support that many users at the same time.

For instance, Minecraft makes use of your computer RAM in order to serve each user connected to your server. So, if you want to serve, say, 200 players, your server should have enough free RAM to help the players play the games properly. You don’t have to spend millions of dollars on a fast server. By spending a few hundred dollars more, you can get a server with enough RAM to serve a lot of users.

Internet connection

Some games require a blazing fast connection. So, if you want those games to be played smoothly, we suggest that you have a faster internet connection. If you have a slow connection, the server will experience lags and won’t be able to serve too many users. Ideally, we suggest that you go for a 10Mbps connection. Make sure it’s the upload speed of your connection. Unlike this game, Minecraft can be run properly with only 0.5Mbps upload speed.

Uptime

The uptime of your server is based on the fact whether it is going to be a public server. If you are going to set up the server for your family members or friends, for instance, you don’t need to keep it online all the time.

In case of a public server, know that your server must be up all the time. You have no idea when someone will connect to your server to play their favorite game. You will lose users if your server remains offline for most of day. Once a user fails to connect to your server, they will go to some other server never to come back again.

Staff

How many moderators do you need to operate your server 24 hours a day? Actually, the answer depends upon the number of users that connect to your server simultaneously. If your server has a huge number of users, we suggest that you hire additional staff to take care of things. On the other hand, if the server is not a public one, you don’t need to hire a big staff.

So, if you have been trying to set up a private game server, we suggest that you follow the tips given below. Just keep in mind that the server should be operated properly and should be online all the time, especially if it is going to be a public server.

Have you been looking for an MU online private server? If so, we suggest that you check out MMOSERVER.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Shalini_Madhav/2396631

http://EzineArticles.com/?4-Tips-To-Help-You-Operate-a-Private-Game-Server&id=9770964

 

Things to Consider When Setting Up a Minecraft Server

Things to Consider When Setting Up a Minecraft Server

 

Things to Consider When Setting Up a Minecraft Server
By Shalini Madhav

A few years back, a game named Minecraft was launched. Soon, it became one of the most popular games and tons of people from across the world became fan of it. The game is placed on different servers around the world. If you intend to make your own Minecraft server, we suggest that you consider the tips given below so you can make your server prominent.

Make sure the theme is appealing

For a good server, you may want to keep in mind that the theme is of paramount importance. What you need to do is carry out a Google search to know the themes that are being liked by the majority of fans. It’s even better if you add multiple themes to cater to most players.

Consider the Cost

It’s costly to install a powerful server but you have to bear the cost. If you want to set up a server for you and a couple of friends, the cost will not be high. However, if you want to open your server to the whole world, you have to be ready to spend a bit more. In this case, your server has to be up all the time. As soon as you become popular, make sure you opt for your own domain.

Spawn area is important

When landing at your server, what will the players see? This is very important. They will see the spawn area at first. So, make sure that the area is appealing. This way the players will be more likely to stay on your server for more exploration. Make sure the server rules are also given in the right area.

Read up on the best plug-ins

As soon as you have decided on the type of Minecraft server you need, your next move is to opt for the right plug-ins. For the safety and convenience of each server, you need some essential plug-ins first. You need three servers namely WorldEdit, Essentials and PermissionsEx. Make sure you get all of them installed on your servers as they are the must-have plug-ins. Without them, your server will be kind of incomplete and the players won’t be able to get the most out your servers.

Get the word out about your server

As soon as you done all the things mentioned above, you are good to go. No! You still have to do one of the most important things: advertising. If you don’t get the word out about your Minecraft server, how will the world get to know about you? You need to do mention your server on relevant forums, especially the official forum of Minecraft.

What you can do is design customized banners and designers for the forum users. You can also consider a listener as it will reward the users who gave their vote for your server. They will get in-game items and money for this.

Long story short, if you are going to launch your own Minecraft server, make sure you follow the guidelines given in this article. This way you will be able to make a lot of moolah through your Minecraft server.

Are you thinking of setting up your own Minecraft servers? If so, you can find a good deal of information on Minecraft Server.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Shalini_Madhav/2396631

http://EzineArticles.com/?Things-to-Consider-When-Setting-Up-a-Minecraft-Server&id=9820773