Vendredi 25 Mai 2012.
That day has finally arrived. I have always been looking forward to that moment but knew when that time came, a gap in my heart was created. “Remise des diplômes” A moment in time that all surviving university students must go through. My four years at Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) have been, for a lack of a better work, awesome. When I first arrived at RIT, I just did not know what to expect. It was a school that I was not to familiar with and only knew that it was one of the few schools in the country that offered Game Development. I grew up in a very competitive school system back at home. All I knew about were the Ivy League colleges or the top 10 in the country. Any other schools beyond that were not even mentioned. It was tough, I wanted to be part of the “top” yet the obstacles before me were too great. By the time it was to apply for college, I had to look beyond the “top 10.” I visited RIT and RPI (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute), which my good friend from high school currently attends, during the fall of my junior year (high school) to see where I would fit. I was intimidated by the brick structures and vastness of the campus but the people I saw were interested. It was also the time when the Game Development Program at RIT was really small. The Game Laboratory was in a small classroom with like 30ish Alienware computers and an arcade machine in the corner, but by the time I have arrived, the lab space was moved nearly tripling the size. I was part of a program that will be changing so much.
Over these four years I have found so many opportunities that I never really found in high school. One of the first was being accepted as a Resident Adviser (RA) during my sophomore year. I have handled kids before in the past, but 27 freshmen for the entire school year? That was another challenge. It was a rewarding experience and made great friends along the way. I continued to be an RA for the next two years growing and helping the newest students of RIT. In addition to the RA opportunity, I have been a note taker for deaf students, a teacher’s assistant and a research assistant. This research opportunity has been one of the most rewarding experience that I have partake in. It involved designing a dynamic experience for the Getty Villa which you can read more here. However that was just the start.
I participated in Global Game Jam with three others crafting a game around the idea of extinction. Out of that event came The Ultimate Celerbration. Somehow it was elected as Gamesauce Top 10 Global Game Jam Games. Brian Soulliard and I were flown out to Hamburg, Germany to give a presentation on our game at Casual Connect. Part of my experience can be read here and our presentation at the 33:33 mark. The game can be downloaded for free at Brian Soulliard’s site. Then basically right after my time in Germany, I was off to San Francisco to attend my very first Game Developers Conference and it was its 25th anniversary! My time at GDC 2011 is tagged on this site. What a winter quarter. A a museum game, 48 game jam, Germany then GDC. Over that summer I had a great internship at Mindspark in NYC. It was interesting in commuting to work from home but I got to see all the cool things happenings in the city. I was happy that my friend Jeffrey Rapp was also able to intern at the same company. Made the days at work even more entertaining besides me shooting my co-workers with the iPhone cameras. 🙂
After all the fun and games, senior year started. As it can be seen from my previous posts, I was counting down the days to this moment but not before a few things I worked on to end my career at RIT with a bang. My good friends Dan Sternfeld and Ben Saxe also created a game at Global Game Jam 2011 known as Fade. I jumped in to help with the art (menu and environment) as they they needed polish and refinement before the game was released on the app store. It was a great undertaking and the game was finally released on the Apple App Store on March 27 2012. Next on the list was creating a game from scratch with a few friends known as Project Pandora. It is currently under development for iOS devices and our progress can be read on our website. I really hope that it will be released by the end of the year but as Shigeru Miyamoto says
A delayed game is eventually good, a bad game is bad forever.
We know to not to release the game if it is not up to snuff however when that time comes, it will be great. A game created and released for sale is a great accomplishment. Being a project manager for this team was a great experience but there much more for me to do.
Late March I learned that I got into University of Southern California (USC) Interactive Media Program in the School of Cinematic Arts. I was happy and surprise and speechless. It is one of the most difficult game programs to get into and I was accepted. So many great game developers and designers came from that school and I hope after my time there, I will join their ranks. RIT was just the start and now USC is continuing my climb up towards my dream. Along the way before I begin my time at USC, I will be participating in RIT study abroad program in Kanazawa, Japan. You can keep up with my time in Japan here but be warned, all of my post will be in Japanese. Have Google translate to assist you with it. 😛 I will be there for 7 weeks on a quest to master my skill in the Japanese language and to fully understand their culture. All those wacky ideas must come from somewhere! I have been so fortunate to be given such great opportunities.
Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. – James 1:12 ESV
I like to thank my friends, colleague and especially my family who have helped to make this all possible. It has been a great four years and time has come for us to go out into the world and make a living. Even though this is the end of our college era, it is just the beginning.
A dream you dream alone is only a dream. A dream you dream together is reality. – John Lennon
A vaincre sans péril, on triomphe sans gloire.- Corneille
Memory Log 06-01-2012CE Recorded Complete.