I hope this can serve as motivation and inspiration to others. I also hope this is in the appropriate thread, moderators or whomever appropriate, please feel free to forward/move to other areas of this community, so more people can see.
After 18 months (more or less) of really digging deep into UE4 and C++ I got my first job as a junior game programmer. It all started with Ben’s Unreal Engine with C++ course. He and Sam did a wonderful job. I admit I had some earlier comp sci background but had not touched coding seriously for decades and had no idea about modern game engines either. The course laid the foundations for a great understanding and learning of how UE4 works with C++ and Blueprints. I want to thank the instructors, the staff (Lucy and others), the amazing assistants who tirelessly answered questions.
So here are some tips:
- Complete the course, FINISH it!
- Keep learning AFTER the course; take another, or practice on your own. I kept practicing on my own for another 6-9 months after I finished the course. I am now taking the Blender course as well!
- Participate in game jams! My first ever was GameDev.tv’s obviously! And that contributed to me getting a job! I had an example of a finished game to show employers! I did another one with a team of total strangers. That makes two completed games I was involved in. Create games and ADVERTISE THEM
- On that topic, I started streaming on Twitch (cheeky self-promotion here, my handle is CodingRook), showcasing my work and my games. You can’t imagine how many people HELP you online, you learn and also it’s very satisfying when you help others. That also shows passion and commitment to anyone considering hiring you.
- IT’S NEVER TOO LATE TO START!! I am 40+, and I started nearly from zero. If you’re passionate and committed you can overcome anything.
Keep learning and keep creating! Good luck to all and above all, just have fun!