I wanted to take a moment to celebrate some of the dev-related things I've accomplished in 2020 and touch on the things I'm looking forward to accomplishing in 2021 (that's the first time I wrote it... so weird). I think the convention is to write one of these posts before the new year begins but... oops. :)
2020 was obviously not a great year, but I was very fortunate that I didn't have to leave the house much aside from walking my dogs and getting groceries. I started the year attending Flatiron School's software engineering program online, which leads me to my first major accomplishment of 2020:
I graduated from Flatiron officially on May 1st and attending was one of the best decisions I've ever made. I've touched on this before in a past post, but as someone with a lot of anxiety I was struggling to advance my career and make new friendships. I chose to attend Flatiron because I was tired of feeling stuck and letting my anxiety keep me from, well, living. Flatiron forced me to overcome a lot. I had no choice but to get on video and phone calls constantly, pair program, network, etc and each time it got a tiny bit easier. The anxiety is still there, the same as it always was and probably always will be, but I'm better able to quiet it. I've met a lot of great people, made some cool projects, and now when my anxiety acts up I can think about all I've accomplished in spite of it.
In September I entered my first game jam. It ran from mid-August to mid-September and the objective was to make a JS/HTML5 game in under 13kb with the theme 404. I've always wanted to enter a game jam and a month was a long time so I decided it would be a good way to get into it. You can read about that experience here. My game could use some work but overall it was well received and I'm very proud of it.
In November I read about another month-long game jam. This one was for the DragonRuby game engine, using the Ruby language of course, and the objective was to make a game that was playable in 20 seconds. Using the knowledge gained from my previous experience I decided to enter this one as well. My experience is here.
At this point I'm starting to feel like a real game developer. 😄
I've tried to learn C++ a couple of times since I was a kid and never got too far, but I started self-studying in November and blogging some of the things I'm learning. I'm determined to stick with it and I'm in the beginning stages of planning my next game, which I intend to code with C++.