60 days to become a game developer. Day 60…..

This is it!!! Yesterday was DAY 60 of this 60 day challenge to become a Unity. Game. Developer.

Did I succeed? Well, lets take a look at what I’ve created the last 60 days and then make a judgement.

Before we do that, let me give you a quick recap of what happened yesterday.

Here’s a shot of our game @ https://gamedevhq.itch.io/nova-star!!

As mentioned in yesterday’s post our game is published! Does that make me a published developer?!😏😁🙌

Yesterday was spent getting ready for a presentation of our game and all of us highlighting one of the features we implemented. It was a great experience to be able to share our game with the entire team, which is now ~60 interns deep! It was also the perfect way to end this 60 day challenge. Was not expecting the timing to play out that way, but hey no coincidences right?

Here’s A Snapshot of the games I built!

Game #1- Space Shooter

Game #2: The Great Fleece

Game #3: NovaStar

When I look at these gifs man, I feel so proud of myself 🙌. Maybe to some people it’s not that impressive but for me, I was terrified of game development before I started. I still have SO much to learn but overall, I feel like I’ve grown so much through this experience. Ironically despite my fears learning game development may have been exactly what I needed to help solidify concepts that I was struggling to grasp with the other learning materials that I tried. Having a visual representation of objects and a powerful tool in the unity engine, which in my humble opinion is very user friendly, helped me to really soak in some of the more complex concepts. Like I’ve said so many times throughout this journey, I am so grateful to have been given this opportunity. It helped me in so many more ways than I was expecting.

What I feel I’ve done well:

  • Stayed consistent. I coded or worked on something related to this internship every single day. There are 2 days during this internship that aren’t accounted for but even on those days I spent time on code. Because of this I feel like I’ve grown SO much. In this post I won’t dive too deep into the technical stuff but if you take a look at my blog posts and see how I was writing code for my space shooter game vs for nova star there’s a noticeable difference and a lot of that was due to consistency. It’s so rewarding that I can open a brand new unity project now and know without a shadow of a doubt that I can crank out a game. period. And this is because us interns were taught consistency is key. There’s no way myself or my teammates would’ve gotten this far if that important lesson wasn’t drilled into us and if we weren’t putting in the work.
  • I think I finally got GIT! I’m still not amazing and have to double check my notes but definitely feel confident that I can use it in a team environment without totally screwing something up...YAY!
  • As previously mentioned one of the hardest parts of this internship has been this blog and the other random times I found myself in the “spotlight” for a lack of a better word. I am the kind of person who likes to be in the background… way in the back. Not seen, not heard, an observer. At one point I even deactivated all of my social media accounts because I felt it was affecting me too negatively. To go from 0 to 100 was hard. I’m proud of myself for continuing to blog often, being honest about where I was through this process, and most importantly, learning to not give a f***. I still put a lot of effort into the blogs that I write but its more for myself and in the hopes that it might be helpful to those who stumble upon them but I don’t feel that sense of doom and gloom that I used to feel if I post something and I don’t get the kind of response I was hoping for. Or rather I don’t hope for any response at all? If people read it and like it cool.. if not, cool. So I guess in that sense the blogs helped me to overcome that.

What I want to work on now:

  • Next I really want to get better at code optimization and writing cleaner code. I’ve been a lone wolf for the whole past year and I think in some ways I’ve picked up bad habits from that. I’m used to just being able to kind of throw stuff at the wall and see what sticks so to speak…this is a terrible idea in a team environment 😅. Luckily I don’t think anything went too far south in this past group project but there were definitely a couple of bugs that came up that could’ve been avoided. The other thing I’m mindful of is that us self-taughters can have a bad rep sometimes and I want to work hard at making sure that I don’t feed into that by making it a priority to write clean code that can easily mesh with my teammates, not just here during this internship but anywhere I go.
  • VR development!! Like I mentioned in a previous post I was gifted a new occulus quest 2 about a month ago now. Things have been pretty busy with everything else going on so I haven’t gotten a chance to get into it too much yet but I am so excited to get my feet wet with VR/AR development. There are so many possibilities in this realm to help enrich people’s lives with this technology. For me I really want to focus on health and wellness. As someone who struggles with anxiety, I know the power of technology as a tool to help manage symptoms. It is close to my heart to be a part of what drives this technology forward. This is actually what inspired me to learn code in the first place. Definitely feel like this internship opened up a whole new door of possibilities for me and I am thrilled to embark on that journey.

Final Thoughts:

I’d say in my very humble opinion that I’ve earned the right to call myself a Unity Developer. I have a million more things to learn, a billion more things to get better at, but I know that if I needed to make a game from scratch right now, I could. I know that I’ll use the skills I’ve gained from this to hopefully create things that will help people in a deep and meaningful way. Words cannot describe what a positive experience this internship has been so far, and again like a broken record I say, Thank you times infinity to GameDevHQ and ACI for this amazing opportunity. It has been life changing for me and I’m sure for many others. Mahalo.

The end is not the end …

1. Because like I mentioned before there are a lot of things I still need to work on.

2. Because I am still in the internship at minimum through the end of next week so I’ll still be posting blogs as its a requirement of the program lol.

The end date of this program has been wishy washy throughout. If I’m not mistaken what funds this internship is monies provided through the CARES Act.. we all know how funding and politics can be so I didn’t want to change the # of days of the challenge even once the extension was confirmed. Instead I’ll be changing the format of my blogs next week and will likely pivot to other things. I’m still not sure what direction I want to take them in but I’ll be around. I’ll also probably continue to post about things on medium here and there even after this internship ends just to keep a foot in the game.

Just want to say thanks for following my journey! It has been a blast.

Take care.