After Some Research...
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I don't think I'm cut out to sit through another 5+ years of school to earn a degree that only vaguely relates to what I want to end up doing.
Project Management is the field I want to enter, as it gives me the opportunity to have a little bit of input on each facet of the development process, as well as the ability to set the general direction of the game.
It sounds like the kind of thing that I'd be good at, and I've really enjoyed working out details on a game I'm working on via a design document I'm working on. Fortunately, the time I spent at Fanshawe included several courses on project management, so I'm not entirely lost; I just have little to no idea as to how to apply that knowledge in a game design environment. I'll figure it out, though.
I've been going over every game design resource I can find, both on this site and others - The Escapist's Extra Credits feature has been particularily enlightening - and more and more I find myself drawn into the world of game design.
I suppose that within the next couple of weeks I'll have to get active on some indie development forums, as interacting with the community is the only way I'll ever be able to make friends, make myself known and ultimately gain experience.
A lot of the information out there indicates that those who want to work in the game industry need to have had a varied life and, along with that, a myriad or experiences to draw upon. This, as far as I can figure it, is true, but saying that one who crafts experiences needs to have had a variety of experiences themselves is like saying those who call themselves mountaineers need to have climbed a mountain or three.
The main question I have is whether it's important to have a piece of paper saying that you know what you're doing for your piece of paper to be an official one from an accredited school or simply to be one that lists your curriculum vitae. How many have gotten their start with doing indie games, how many have gotten their start doing games linked to a preexisting IP (Yo! Noid, Pirates of the Caribbean or the Burger King series) and how many have gotten their start simply by being hired by one of the AAA studios?
Anyway. The main thing I've been working on is a 2d shmup / platformer. I've noticed that the 2d shmup genre has been keeping itself nestled snugly in the niche of bullet hell games (see Do Don Pachi for a great example of the Bullet Hell / Manic Shooter genre), and that that very same trend is alienating the entire genre from receiving an infusion of new players.
I grew up in the era of Gradius, R-Type, Contra and Strider, and I think that an accessible visit back to those days combined with some of the innovations that you see in more modern games would make an interesting title to work on - especially on a mobile platform, but also via a small download based distribution platform, such as WiiWare, XBLA, PSN or even Steam.
Still in the development stages, though, and I'm revamping the development group's website to reflect this. I think my seeking out a new social group to assist me with this will happen sooner, rather than later.