I am 30 years old, and just now realizing that becoming a video game creator is my destiny, and I have decided to dedicate the rest of my life towards this craft.
Anyway you slice it, learning C++ has got to be a high priority.
Here are some questions:
I'm completely broke, and I already have a bachelors in a foreign language.
Would it be worth it to take out loans, enroll in an online school, and get some kind of degree?
Or would it be smarter to just teach myself coding with books and DVD's?
My ultimate goal is to create my own video game.
I do not aspire to be some kind of master coder for some big name team, because then I will be making other people's games. I would be happy to do this for money and the educational experience, but my ultimate goal is to create my own games that hold my own creative vision.
I took one coding class before in high school, but other than that I am a TOTAL n00b to all this, so any and all advice would be greatly appreciated.
How do I go about becoming a video game creator when I am broke?
Start out reading free tutorials and watch videos online. Invest in a C++ programming book and read it 3 times. Master it and code on your own.
Then take live taught online classes with an actual teacher and learn more of it. Then you will be ready.
Now you cannot create a game by yourself only knowing C++. Unless you want a stick figure game without any sound.
Here is a few things you need to make a video game.
and more depending on the game.
These are what you need to either know, be good at, or hire for to make a good game or something worth buying or playing. But if you just want to do a so so game that isn't much fun just to get experience, that's fine.
You might want to go into text based game coding. It's something you can do alone.
Thank you so much for your informative and helpful response.
So are you saying that I can program most all of the game myself, I just need other people to do the 3d modeling, animation, and art?
This is quite a long list:
If I were to make a bare-bones game on a tight budget, we wouldn't need cut scene cinematics, the voices could be done by friends of mine, and the sound and music could be done by me (I'm a musician and sound guy). I am also a writer and I wouldn't need to pay for a story concept or any storyboarding.
Which of those job roles could you absolutely not live without? If we were to shrink that list. I think it would look more like this:
So you need bare minimum about a 4 person team to make a game?
I can do voice acting if you like. Anything to help you realize your dream. I myself, want to be in the Web Developing business. Hey wouldn't it be crazy if I were to make a website for a video game you created. The only problem with my dream is that I am not old enough to go to college to learn web developing.
Anyways, as said before I can voice act. I am decent with accents and stuff but I do not have a deep voice yet. So you would have to bare with me.
You could consider getting the source code of open source games like 0ad and Xonotic to learn from them as well as to modify them. I would recommend modifying a game you enjoy before making your own because you could get faster results and therefore faster recognition for when you want to work in the "real world." I'm not a games programmer or someone with experience in the path you want to take but I am a strong open source supporter just listing a few advantages in case you want to take advantage of them. As you may already know, the only "disadvantage" is that the open source games tend to use OpenGL whereas Direct3D is used in most gaming industries. Exceptions are with Mac/Linux games but they currently hold a minority of the market though Valve's (a very good video game company) supporting of Mac/Linux might start to change that. Also, if it interests you, Android/iOS use OpenGL ES and you could make games for those.