Game Design at the Crossroads of America
Indianapolis, Indiana, is found at the intersection of 3 Interstate highways. With a population of nearly 2 million in the metropolitan area, it is with good reason that it is often called the crossroads of America. Indianapolis, the largest city in the state, is the 12th in size in the US. And with its central location in the Midwest of the nation, it’s not a bad place at all to seek a degree in computer programming, with certification in game design. Which is why the Indianapolis design schools stand out for both potential students and employers.
The city is home to a state-sponsored school of nearly 30,000 students. The Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis offers a four-year degree in Computer and Information Science, with third-year electives on the scripting languages and 3D aspects of game programming. One of the greatest needs in game design right now is for programmers with expertise in 3-D digital animation, as this is the direction in which gaming is developing most rapidly.
Among the Indianapolis design schools one will also find private institutions, such as the Indiana Business College, TechSkills, and the Art Institute of Indianapolis, and there are several options and campuses to choose from in pursuing an education in game design. At the ITT Indiana College location one may earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Digital Entertainment and Game Design. At the University of Indiana you can either major or minor in Computer Science over four years of study in their degree program.
According to the International Game Developers Association, game programmers are earning from $60,000 to $80,000 a year. The US Bureau of Labor and Statistics notes that game designers with a four-year degree are the most likely to be hired. However, folks with a 2-year degree or classes more tightly focused on a specific aspect of game design are in demand as well. All these possibilities are to be found at the many Indianapolis design schools of the greater metro area.
In the midst of an economic downturn some might think that the first thing to be cut from personal budgets would be recreational pursuits. Like computer gaming. But current trends show that, while people are cutting back on other luxuries like vacations and new cars, they continue to turn to movies and electronic games for diversion. Or escapism. For example, Nintendo’s Wii systems are still difficult to locate in local outlets. Guitar Idol and Rock Star are among the top-selling software programs of all time. Online game services continue to thrive as well.
And digital gaming is not just a male interest any more. Game designs meant to attract women players are hot items. As gaming develops past the “first person shooter” model it widens its appeal. The “Wii Fit” system encourages physical activity rather than passive play – it also breaks the age barrier, which has kept computer gaming for so long in the realm of young males. The “Dance Dance Revolution” types of games appeal to both sexes and all ages, illustrating the creative game interfaces made possible by creative designers in the past few years.
Moving further into the 21st century, it seems game design is a career with a promising future. There are many Indianapolis design schools open and available to the savvy student, ready of equip anyone seeking to grow in their capacity to create the games that will soon be on the shelves of Best Buy or Game Stop.