How it all began

I’ve wanted to be a game developer as long as I can remember, but I needed to pay the bills, something that I’m sure a lot of you reading this can relate to. Well, I’m decent with computers, so I decided to apply in IT-related fields. After a while of job searching, I got a job at a well-known company that offers computer and TV repair services. Yea, that one. That is where I met Luis, a future member of the Tech Tycoon team, and where I learned how dramatic and surprisingly entertaining the IT and customer service industry can be. After a year of suppressed memories and a poorly-fit uniform, I decided to take another job as a computer technician for a well-known aviation company, but I knew I couldn’t do this forever.

My love for game development followed me into the office everyday. Because of this, a coworker of mine and I would always spitball game ideas during our down time. Eventually, we looked around and thought “Why not this?”. Thus, we came up with the concept that turned into Tech Tycoon. After we spent the rest of the day brainstorming what we thought this hypothetical game might look like, I decided to give the idea a shot, and development began. It didn’t look pretty, but I loved it.

A screen shot of the original Tech Tycoon project in 2017

After about a month of development, I ultimately decided that I didn’t have what it takes, programming-wise, to take on this project. I put the project on the shelf, and looked into how I can improve as a programmer. After a lot of research, I decided to take HarvardX’s excellent online course: Intro to Programming on edx.com. After I finished that course, I started a tradition of solving coding challenges on LeetCode.com everyday, something I still do today. After a year or so of self-improvement, I decided to join a game jam near me. Little did I know how vital to Tech Tycoon that game jam would be.

If you have an interest in game development, and have never been to a game jam, I cannot recommend it enough. Not only will you get a taste of what working in the field is like, you’ll also meet a ton of people who have the same passions as you. And that’s exactly what happened. I found my self on a team of artists, one of whom, Bill, would join the Tech Tycoon team.

A few months after the game jam, I felt like I was ready to continue the development of Tech Tycoon. And, coincidentally, that was also when I got a message from my team from the game jam asking if I wanted to go to a party celebrating the opening of their game development club. It was at this event where I asked Bill if he wanted to join the team as an artist.

I ended up completely scrapping the original Tech Tycoon, and created a new Unity project from scratch, rewriting a lot of the code. This is also when I asked Luis if he would like join the team. Within just a couple of weeks, the progress we made was shocking, and really exciting. There was a beautiful moment around the 10th day after Bill joined where all three of us realized that we could be onto something special.

Tech Tycoon in Q1 2019

Now, we are a little over a month of development, and many, many things are going to change and look different. But we are so proud of what we’ve accomplished so far. We’ve added a fourth and probably final member of the family, Jailene, to create some of the environmental art.

Yesterday I worked my last day in the field of IT, so that I can dedicate wholly to Tech Tycoon. I can’t wait to see what happens next.

-Turner

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