Ryann is a student of ours who started years ago with the Ultimate Guide to Game Development. An avid game jam entrant, her work continued to improve and amaze us with each and every entry. We wanted to get a better understanding of who she was and how she manages to stay so dedicated to game development.
Hi Ryann, tell us how you become a game developer?
How many years have you spent in game development?
I’ve been involved in some aspect of game development (primarily 3D game assets and animation), at a hobbyist level for the last 15 years. Game development with Unity has been my primary focus of learning over the last 2 years.
What was the first game you built and how did that game turn out?
The first game I built with Unity was called Beelieve. I built it for the inaugural GDHQ discord group game jam using the skills I learned while making the space shooter game from the Ultimate Guide to Unity course.
It had a lot of bugs (heh), and I really had to scramble to get it ready for the deadline. But I got a lot of great feedback from Jon and the community that gave me the confidence to keep at it. I’ve participated in about 7 game jams since then.
What lessons have you learned that shaped the way you build games today?
- Time management, knowing how much time you have to execute your idea and keeping your scope tight – or failing that, the ability to reset your expectations and edit on the fly.
- Put your work out there, and get feedback. It helps build your confidence and grows relationships with people in the industry.
What are you working on now?
Has game development helped you progress career-wise?
A lot of the skills you use in game development are transferable to other types of development, and vice versa. Animation/Video skills have also been invaluable as a marketable asset for me career-wise. Troubleshooting skills are universal.
If you could impart any tips or tricks to future game developers, what would it be?
I think if game development is your career of choice (assuming you’d like to work for a big player in the industry) then try to find a specialization and be excellent at it.
I am a generalist, I like to know (and do) ‘all the things’. While being a generalist makes me adaptable, it also makes me hard to place, as I never truly spend enough time on any specific aspect to be considered adept in any area.