The epitomic reference to the development of software seems to be the most suitable way to return to the world of Game Development. I have not been as active socially or networking-wise in about 5-8 years both due to personal choices and situations in life. I originally started my love of gaming all the way back when I was 3 years old, my first memory in fact is of watching my older brother and father playing Super Mario Brothers on Nintendo. This along with other points in my life, such as getting my hands on the game Doom at 8 years old, seemed to send me off on a clear path to love gaming. Unlike others on the recent quest to make a fun or rich living out of gaming, I actually looked towards the search of knowledge. Physics that is. I have always planned to eventually get my PhD in theoretical physics, ever since I was in middle-school, and knew that science was my one true love. So how did I find a way to satisfy my two loves?
Well, as a geeky kid growing up, I yearned to learn how everything worked in the world, I excelled in school and personally looked for more science books to read. At the same time, during my downtime I had a deep love of playing video games, my brother and I used to even plan out designing our own video games way back when we were eight to ten years old. Eventually when I went off to college for engineering school, a conveniently placed show on the NASA channel made me realize what I wanted to do. An engineer came on the television, this was when the mars rover was first being developed, and he mentioned they were in great need of people that were both creative and scientific. Knowing how to program, engineer, and design a robot for missions to other worlds would behoove everyone. At that instant I realized that the best approach to this would be gamification (which did not exist at the time). You see, video game development is the only industry where you have the public throwing money at an industry saying “give me something faster, stronger, better, more efficient” without end. This has pushed the ability of technology to the brink of keeping processor developers on their toes every single year! As I was currently attending an Aerospace Engineering school I saw that they were starting to use Microsoft Flight Simulator, along with other simulators for pilots and realized Simulators were the answer for space exploration. In order to create simulations of other worlds and test scenarios I would need a background in all of the following: programming, video game development, engineering, and physics; along with the creative aspect. This being set in stone within my mind, I set off to get my development degree, leaving behind my first love physics, which I understood deeply at this point already so it seemed I could return easily to it later.
Life happens. It was not easy to return to physics, no matter how successful I was in my undergraduate degree, entering the gaming industry, or understanding of systems in total. My background in physics and start in engineering, along with my degree in development let me understand software and rising technologies so easily that I had no problem finding work right after college. This actually seemed to be inherent in me to the point that every job I entered within the IT or Gaming industry would instantly be mastered within 8 months. Being that I was in Arizona for most of the time after my first degree, this left me with no real leads into the industry and after viewing a very political, crony-istic, and nepotistic environment in the industry, I lost faith. Of course, I had made lots of friends in the industry which I have kept in touch with up until today, but the true love of the industry was unbeknownst to me, not what I was originally trying to break into.
About two years ago, being broken spirited, standing on the sidelines of the industry for a couple of years, and making a career out of IT, I came in contact with a book. Relativity: The Special and the General Theory, by Albert Einstein. I felt a rush of life into my heart and remembered why I had begun to do everything I did in the first place. BUT, in this current world of recession and previous generations having collapsed or caused economic bubbles, debt was a real issue. I felt dread and fear knowing that I could not possibly afford to go back to school and coming from a lower income area in the United States made any financial backing impossible from anyone else. At this point I was suddenly able to audit a class of Quantum Mechanics and found that I had that same deep inherent understanding to it, along with the Relativistic side of Physics. I had to do this, I left my position as an analyst of almost three years to move to Austin, and plan to finish my graduate work in Physics. At the same time, I felt at this point my understanding of systems (everything is a system) become so deeply ingrained in my existence. I ended up easily finding work as soon as I got to Austin, and realized the true innovation in game development was currently in the “Indy Circuit” as mainstream development had almost lost touch or become too concrete in what was being developed, which is why I have decided to continue development within this scene.
Austin became a whirlwind of knowledge, development, stress, opportunity, difficulty, and just overwhelming. I am currently networking with other developers, attending conferences, attending expos, and starting development of my personal projects long overdue. I see my future in the industry being one of an active member, yet more in an analytical sense, in order to help the industry continue to stay innovative, successful, and informative of what is occurring. My love of physics and the world pushes me towards furthering my education and becoming a top-level physicist in my life eventually but the love for gaming will always be in my heart.