A question to all mappers

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by cornontheCoD, Aug 23, 2009.

  1. cornontheCoD

    cornontheCoD L7: Fancy Member

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    I have noticed that a lot of people on this site do mapping only as a hobby. I am curious why more of the mappers here don't want to go into the game industry (or so it seems).

    It's just, I don't consider myself to be that great of a mapper (level designer, whatever you want to call it), and I just got into Digipen. I realize good level design isn't the only thing a person needs to work in the industry, but it seems like a lot of you guys would work well in the industry. It is just a shame to me that the talented people here don't want to turn this into a career, and not-so-talented (for now) people like me are making it (hopefully) into the industry.

    I see a lot of great maps on this site, and I just get this weird feeling when I see potential, but the mapper is only doing it as a hobby.

    So, my question is, why don't you talented mappers want to go into the game business? If you do want to, what steps are you taking to get there?

    I realize I will get a lot of "it's just a hobby for me" responses, but that's what I'm getting at. If you enjoy it, why not go into a career where you can do it more and get paid for it?

    I hope you guys can prove me wrong, and surprise me by saying that you do want to go into a related career.
     
  2. Void

    aa Void Local Man Unable To Map, Sources Say

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    Most of us still have school to go through, whether it be high school, college, or some other thing.

    Mapping is a side thing for most. Some just pull it off big enough to make it into that special hl2.exe.
     
  3. TMP

    aa TMP Abuser of Site Rules

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    I don't plan on getting into the field because its a clusterfuck of pain to get jobs.

    I'm sticking it safe with my passion: Mathematics!
     
  4. JoshuaC

    JoshuaC L7: Fancy Member

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    I'd love to get into the industry if I could continue to use hammer. I've mapped using the other editors but hammer just really clicks with me.
     
  5. J4CK8

    J4CK8 L11: Posh Member

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    That is weird. My brother not long ago just asked me if I wanted to work in the gaming industry.

    I don't consider myself to be an awesome pro mapper, but I would like to go into the gaming industry when I'm old enough.
     
  6. Micnax

    aa Micnax I maek map

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    Like Void said, most of us are still at school.

    Be pretty awesome to work for Valve though, knowing all those secrets... *drools*
     
  7. luxatile

    aa luxatile deer

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    I'm hoping to get into the industry in the future. Right now I'm just going through "general" school (explaining this using English/American school terms would be next to impossible). A level design job would be my absolute dream job (or so I'd imagine), so of course I'm going to chase it. Even if it's most likely going to be hard.

    Unfortunaly, Norway doesn't have a lot of jobs to offer (we have only one remarkable game developer AFAIK, Funcom, and most likely not a lot on the whole either), and I'm not sure how far I can get with the education I can take without studying abroad. Which is discouraging, but I hope however I choose to do it will be worth it in the end.
     
  8. Trotim

    aa Trotim

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    I'm not sure, but I personally believe that mapping as a job would immediately suck all fun out of it.
     
  9. Terr

    aa Terr Cranky Coder

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    I do some non-game programming in a small game company. It's always interesting to walk by the studio area and peek at what some of the photoshop/maya folks are doing.

    I think for me mapping may end of being just another "random geekery" phase where I learn a bunch about something by doing a project in it and then move on when something more interesting ("oooh, device drivers!") catches my eye.
     
  10. zpqrei

    aa zpqrei Theme Changer Extraordinaire

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    I beg to differ.

     
  11. cornontheCoD

    cornontheCoD L7: Fancy Member

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    What industry isn't, especially if you live in america right now?
     
  12. owly-oop

    aa owly-oop im birb

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    My dream job would be a level designer. Especially for a multiplayer game. But if i ever bother to learn how to model (or finish a map), my other dream job would be to work at pixar
     
  13. Engineer

    aa Engineer

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    I would love to be a mapper at VALVe, but its on the other side of the world for me , and i have to finish school first.
     
  14. Terr

    aa Terr Cranky Coder

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    Fake: Obviously you're being tricked by Stavros Xanthis. Almost everybody else is fired.
     
  15. Artesia

    Artesia L6: Sharp Member

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    I'm currently in college at the Art Institute, they do offer game design but I'm studying animation. That being said I am trying to get into the gaming industry, not necessarily as a level designer. I see level design as an extra bonus I could have on my portfolio, but don't always have time to work on it, I have many more important, more time consuming animations projects, either for school or personal projects.
     
  16. Spike

    Spike L10: Glamorous Member

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    Most of the people here do this as a hobby, and they don't have any studies to get into gamming industry.

    If you want to be a level designer you should study something like graphic design, or painting. The industry looks for people with advanced modelling (most of them 3ds max) and painting skills. The only one I can remember on tf2maps with those skills is Arthur and I don't know if he's already working for some company.

    Personally, I do it as a hobby, I suck at painting and I have a medium level of modeling (XSI & Zbrush, not 3dsmax) and I live in a country with 0 interest on this industry. Also I don't like the kind of studies you need to have for working on it, I'm studiing something more interesting and with a lot more future than level designing.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2009
  17. Shaar

    Shaar L3: Junior Member<BR>toboruin

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    I need breaks from mapping, hence why I only do it for fun, when it feels like it's becoming tedious, I break from it. I doubt one would be allowed to do it in a job. besides, what would I be able to do as a hobby when I get home from a job? it would get boring quickly if you hobby was the same as your job.
     
  18. Trotim

    aa Trotim

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    Okay, but that's Valve, and it's pretty unlikely to get a job there (if not impossible from the get-go). You'd have to have made a lot of other levels for other, worse games first. I'm not sure I'd be comfortable making generic forest levels for "Sandra's Horse Adventures". Keep in mind that not all SDKs, editors and engines are as sophisticated as Source.

    What I'm trying to say: I would never study level design and then just be level designer for random games and companies. That's a nightmare.
     
  19. Grimes

    Grimes L1: Registered

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    Being an unemployed Bachelor of Science in Computer Graphics Technology, I'd say it's safe to say that I would want to work in the games industry, but at this rate I'll take any job in my field that I can get right now. I view level design for TF2 as something to broaden my horizons, in terms of my capabilities. Plus it is something to do that I missed out on or ignored when I was younger.

    In my opinion making levels for TF2 isn't the full extent of what "level design" is. Yes you are making a level, program some of the game rules so it all works, and build a player experience but most if not all the art assets have been created already. What the game is, and how it plays has already been decided by Valve long before you had a chance to touch the Source SDK for tf2. If you really want to flex your muscles of level design, work on a full conversion mod or a single player game. That being said, making levels for Tf2 is a great starting point. Its a much shorter project than a single player level or a mod. You can get nearly instant results from playtests.

    If you want to market yourself for the games industry, try your hand at everything. Hammer is a great place to learn the ins-and outs of working in a 3d environment. The next logical step is to learn how to model, then texture, rig characters, light a scene, animation, and visual effects. And if you can't get that job at Pixar or Valve or some other big name company, just keep at it. If you keep sending stuff in, and it keeps improving, chances are they will be impressed.
     
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  20. Shadow Tyrant

    Shadow Tyrant L69: Deviant Member

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    This. I really want to get into the industry, whether it be level design or not. And since I'm not in school or anything right now, I'm just learning by my own experience. I also have limited experience in 3Ds max, but little is better than nothing. Although I have to say, I prefer Hammer a lot over 3Ds max. Maybe if 3Ds Max had Hammer's wasd 3D movement...

    But yeah. I figure I should get experience in at least a couple programs, so I can see which I like more, and increase my credibility, etc.