You’re in luck! With RIT in town and a handful of talented game companies in the region, anyone interested in getting started in the game industry (or just curious about it) has a place to start. Whether you are looking towards a future career in design or development, or you just want to make make a hobby of it, there are several groups you can check out.
ROC Game Dev is a collective of video game developers, artists, and enthusiasts in the region. Membership is free to anyone who wants to join, and meetings are open to anyone into development or just up for discussion about games. The group organizes multiple workshops and social meetups and participates in several game showcases throughout the year.
For women specifically, Girl Develop It has a great presence in Rochester. This nonprofit organization aims to bring affordable web and software development courses to women across the country. Their goal is to provide powerful hands-on programs for those seeking professional help in the industry. There are now chapters in 57 cities in 33 states with 3 in Upstate New York alone. The Rochester chapter host meetups monthly.
Rochester Software Development Meetup (Roc Dev) houses a group of people involved in a variety of software development fields. Roc Dev welcomes all who are interested in sharing their thoughts and ideas for projects, ideas, and software. Topics on the industry change every meetup and it’s their goal to be a steady force and general hub for anyone wanting to be involved in building quality software.
Another hot spot for Rochester Game Development is the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) which is ranked #8 for the best gaming schools in the world by Successfulstudent.org. RIT’s Interactive Games and Media department runs programs geared towards majors that want to learn more about game design. The program has been rated one of the top 10 video game design programs for 4 years in a row by the Princeton Review. With that in mind, RIT also includes other majors that pair very well with game design such as their 3D modeling, software design, and graphic arts.
Not only that, The MAGIC center at RIT is the best way for students to meet fellow game devs, as well as discussing and creating games with them. The magic center is open to the entire campus community and all resources are available to use by partners, affiliates as well as students and faculty who pursue digital media development. MAGIC also features a guest speaker once a year, including experts from all across the game development industry.