Rona, or Romi on Discord, is a student who started with little to no experience in game development several years ago. She took the Ultimate Guide to Game Development in Unity and is now a seasoned pro. One of the inspirational qualities of Romi is she participated in every GDHQ game jam and with each sequential jam, her skills and knowledge grew. She also developed strong friendships with fellow game jam partners inside the GDHQ community and has recently finished first in an external game jam. With the release of her new game demo, “Apartment 5” we decided to interview her and ask her about her game development journey.
**Special Update on August 15, 2019 **
Romi’s game got featured on jacksepticeye’s youtube channel and to date, has received over 1.2 million views. I quote “Aww man, I was kinda making fun of it at the start, but that was really fun! I liked it a lot! It started to turn into a little murder mystery. I want a whole game like this.” That honest reaction is simply amazing and you can watch the whole video and review right here:
Hi Romi, tell us how you become a game developer?
I saw my son working with Unity and I sat with him and watched him work, I got really interested and making that first little “man” sprite move around, bowled me over and game development became my new hobby.
How many years have you spent in game development?
This is my fourth year. So about 3 and half years.
What was the first game you built and how did that game turn out?
A snowman dodger game, and it didn’t turn out so well, the snowman could fly, only later I learned to restrict the snowman’s movements, but it did make my friends laugh.
What lessons have you learned that shaped the way you build games today?
I need to plan my game, through a Game Design Document or mind map or a script but planning is crucial. Then the last few short games I made, music played a very important role for me. Music inspires me to see the game play out in my mind’s eye visually. It helps a lot in my vision of the game.
What are you working on now?
I am doing bugfixes and changes to my Adventure Jam 2019 game entry, My Inner Demon. But the next project is waiting behind the curtains.
Has game development helped you progress career-wise?
I am a creative arts teacher, I see the games I create as art works. Of course when my students found out I was making games, they put me on a new level of cool. So in a way it has help me career wise.
If you could impart any tips or tricks to future game developers, what would it be?
- Start small, make many small games
- Take part in as many game jams as you can
- Introduce yourself at these game jam events and keep the people updated on your progress. You will make friends and get known.
Where can we learn more about you and your game?