Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Developer in the Making - Episode 2

It's been awhile since I did one of these.
I had intended on doing one a couple of weeks back, but I just couldn't be arsed.

This time I will go over my thought and work process during the month of March, which was my first real stride to becoming a developer.

Or at least I thought it was.

The Research

The very first thing I did was research.
My target, CCP and Iceland. I had to know more about them before I completely made up my mind.

So what did I find out?
Let's start with Iceland:

1) Their almost completely broke. During 2007, due to several years of having unregulated banks, the CEO's had overblown the currency and took a whole lot of money that wasn't theirs, and ran with it. Causing the entire economy to collapse overnight as a result.
They are, or at least were, effectively bankrupt.

2) They have a strong infrastructure, and have a healthy wealth of natural resources (fish), and a growing IT industry.

3) They only have a 300,000 populace. (yes, EVE Online has more players then Iceland has people)

4) They are a strong, independent people, which take care of one another.
They also have names which are hard to pronounce.

5) They are built on a volcano, and have lots of hot-springs.

So all in all, I found that I really like Icelandic people and their country. And while they are having financial difficulties, they have the attitude and the means to pick themselves up, dust their fat ass off, and try again.
As such, I have tremendous respect for them now.

As for CCP, I found them to be reflective of the country in which they are built.
Every video that I saw, I found them to be carefree, cheerful, hardworking and independent.
So their a lot like myself then.

Business wise, they are growing, and seemingly don't give a shit if you have qualifications or much experience, in order to have the job.
What they seem to care about above all else is personality and attitude. Which I am abundant in both.

And last, but certainly not least, they are always hiring.
Could it get any better?

So all things considered, this reaffirmed my desire to work for these people, and has since made me all the inspired to do the hard yards in order to get there.

My First Baby Steps

So, what have I done?
Or rather, what DID I do, back in March when I was so enthused?

Not as much as I'd like in retrospect.

As an artist, I knew if I had any shot at getting in, it would be via my art.
So to play to my strength, and to meet the requirement for the job I was gunning for, I had to make a portfolio.
What is one? Such a series of pictures of my creation, illustrating my skill.

And in this case, as I knew in advance who I wanted to work for, I could cater my portfolio to CCP.

So what I did was that I figured out that I needed to draw several spaceships, as well as characters, that I would otherwise be expected to draw should I be working for them.

As I had played EVE Online, what I decided to do was to draw two classes of ships, one for each race, for a total of 8 ships. In this case, it was Destroyers and Battlecruiser class ships, as I felt they were under represented in the game.

But drawing them wasn't enough. I had to also render them in color, with as much detail as I could with my skill level.
No holds bars.

So I started conceptualizing the ships, first the Destroyers then the Battlecruisers.
Sometimes I was able to sketch out a ship with little reference or failed previous designs. But a most of the time, I had to constantly reference EVE Online's ships and go through several designs before I was satisfied.

It took me about two weeks to sketch everything if I remember. Might have been one, IDK.

After that, I went about the rendering process of sketching them into my computer via my Wacom Intous 3 pen tablet, and Adobe Photoshop.
It went well at first. Got through three of them without too much difficulty.

But the more I did, the more I realized that I sucked ass. I could sketch and conceptualize really very well, but I just wasn't satisfied with the end results.
They weren't bad, but they just weren't good enough..... for me.

I knew I was getting better, and I knew where I wanted to get to. But the style that I was using at the time, just wasn't up to the task.

In Closing

And so, I put down my pencil at the end of March, and began to reevaluate just how the heck I was going to do this.

And over the months past, I came to rethink near about everything that I thought about MMO's, what I wanted, where I wanted to see the industry go, where I wanted to go, and how I was going to get there.

Truly, by the end of March, I realized my battle had only yet begun.

In the next episode, I'll cover some of the rollercoster that were my thought processes, as I changed they way I thought about damn near everything. (about mmo's ^^)

PS, Hopefully it won't be another month before I post on this topic again.


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