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rutulmthakkar 1 / -  
Jan 18, 2018   #1
I am targeting to do an MS in Game Development this fall 2018 in USA. I have targeted the following universities
1. University of Southern California
2. Rochester Institute of Technology
3. Northeastern University
4. Southern Methodist University
5. DigiPen Institute of Technology
6. University of California Santa Cruz
7. DePaul University

According to you which university is the best for academics, faculties and facilities. (provide an ordered list ranking them 1 to 7 (1 being best and 7 being least favored)

MS in Game Development


Technology never fails to astound me. Every day we see new innovations being made, making the impossible possible. One such device that stands out in my memory is the smartphone. It all began when Steve Jobs, founder and former CEO of Apple, announced a yet another of his revolutionizing products: the iPhone. It was not only a phone, but a computer in disguise, that fits the palm of our hands and can do much more than just phone calls or text messages. It was the beginning of a new era, with myriad amount of possibilities and new horizons to be explored. The video game industry is one of the fields where smartphones seems to have brought the most opportunities. What was once only accessible to those who owned gaming consoles, is now available to any individual who owns a smartphone. Earlier people needed to be near their consoles in order to enjoy games, but now with the smartphone, one can enjoy the same anytime anywhere they are. This gives us ample amount of audience to target and thus monetizing video games becomes much easier. I believe that smartphones and the VR technology are the future of this industry. This excites me to want to be part of this portable gaming industry and I believe that I have all it takes to be the one of the sought-after video game creator.

My interest in games goes long back to my childhood. I recall that my first experience with gaming was probably on the old Nokia phones playing the ever iconic snake's game and the bounce ball game on Motorola phones. My passion for games exists till date and I thoroughly enjoy playing games like FIFA, Need for Speed and Counter Strike. Apart from this, I also have the curiosity to explore new tech products. I recollect that during my childhood I used to take a new phone and could easily figure out how to do basic things like bluetooth file transfer and changing ringtones in a matter of few moments. People used to come to me to get such small things done because they could not figure it out. As I grew older, this thirst for learning about technology was still intact.

As a person, I have always embraced challenges be it in my education choices or in my professional life. One such instance occurred during my high school, where I had the choice of pursuing either A-levels or IB diploma. Without any hesitation, I made my decision to take on IB diploma even after knowing that it was probably tougher of the two as it required me to excel in diverse subjects in order to obtain my diploma. Although I struggled in a few subjects, eventually my perseverance led me to earning the diploma.

During my high school, I had only learnt basic web designing, but it was my determination to learn how to make software that led me to choose computer science as my undergraduate field of study, paving my way to masters in the same field. It was in my undergraduate studies that I wrote my first program in C language, and I remember the happiness it gave me. My first exposure to animation came during my undergraduate Multimedia and Animation course, in which I have also done a project. My project involved educating about the modern wonders of the world through a Google Earth like animation, which was created frame by frame using Synfig Studio. Along with this, I have also done various other projects for most of my other courses of my undergraduate study. I had also created a C++ game called "Hangman" along with my friend. The game uses words from a fix set of categories such as celebrity, place, food, movies and animals. It also uses the graphics.h library for creating some simple yet attractive UI.

By the time, I had completed my undergraduate studies, I was well versed with programming languages such as C, C++ C# and Java. Having done numerous projects in my undergraduate degree, I had gathered sufficient programming expertise, but I lacked the knowledge of making my code efficient. Hence my next aim in life was to gain knowledge about how to write more effective code and my masters at one of the best universities of the nation - Dhirubhai Ambani Institute of Information and Communication Technology (DAIICT), provided me with exactly that. I learnt the importance of algorithms, effective design and complexity of code through various courses such as data structures and algorithms, database management, design of software systems, software project management, enterprise computing and many more. It has undoubtedly provided me a more holistic view to the field of computer science through the various projects that I have done throughout my education (a brief list can be found in my resume). Furthermore, I believe my control over international languages such as English and French has enabled me to excel in my undergraduate and graduate programs with flying colours, standing at top 5% of my class. Along with this, I can also now clearly understand how a block of code can easily make or break the user experience of a software.

I was able to experience this very lesson throughout my internship and work life. Working on real time projects, I was always expected to deliver attractive UI designs and a fluid user experience to my android application users. During my time at Hubilo Softech Private Limited, I worked on all of their three android solutions, managing their existing features as well as developing new ones such as analytics, push notification, news feed, side bar navigation and making their applications offline using Realm and SQLite database. Moreover, I have also implemented Google's Model View ViewHolder (MVVM) architecture for android application in my own way for better performance, code readability and testing of their applications. I have published various applications for the organization's impressive clientele. The organization has most famously provided mobile application for Vibrant Gujarat 2017, held at Gandhinagar, Gujarat, India.

Throughout my education, I have also taken part in various state and national level tech fests winning numerous trophies and certificates in events like IT Quiz and programming, some of which can be found listed in my resume. Along with this, I have also undertaken the responsibility of coordinating national level tech fests at my undergraduate and graduate school. Besides this, I was also a member of Google Developer Group of my graduate school and helped coordinate various lectures and seminars. Moreover, during my undergraduate studies, I was an active member of Computer Society of India (CSI) student branch at Ahmedabad University.

In addition to this, I have also undertaken some courses externally such as Google Applied CS with Android Course, in which I have developed four android games. Each game involved learning some core android fundamental concepts as well as applying data structure and algorithms concept to it. Moreover, I have also recently started learning Unity 3D online and have developed two games namely FlappyBird and Roll a ball.

I intent to further broaden my horizon by undertaking your graduate program of Game Science and Design. Studying under the limelight of experienced faculties such as Professor Magy Seif El-Nasr, will allow me to enhance my existing skillset and develop immersive games in future. Furthermore, I believe her knowledge and experience at handing projects at famous organizations such as Electronic Arts will help me better understand the process of becoming a successful entrepreneur in the game industry.

My ultimate goal in life is to have my own game studio and build big gaming titles like FIFA. I believe in order to attain this goal of mine, studying at an esteem university as yours will not only provide me with the required knowledge and countless invaluable opportunities, but also make me a sought-after industry ready engineer to embrace and strive at the challenges that lie ahead. I look forward to joining your next batch and I assure you that with my skills and determination, I will prove to be an invaluable asset to your university.

Holt [Contributor] - / 9,717 3062  
Jan 18, 2018   #2
HI Rutul, in relation to the university ranking, our forum is not in the habit of ranking universities, nor do we rank these academic institutions for the student applicants because the qualities of the university, and whether or not it appeals to a student, along with its personal ranking, are all based upon personal decisions that we are not privy to. What I can tell you though, is that you chose very good universities as your options. What you have to do now is think of what you want to learn and then chart the universities that seem to fall within your personal academic requirements. You are the best person to rank these universities from 1-7 because you, of all people, will know what you are looking for and which your first choice university is, regardless of its ranking in the field.

I hope that you are not planning on writing just one statement of purpose for all of the universities that you will be applying to. Based upon the specific SOP prompt of each university, you will need to write a specific essay meant only for that university or adjust your content each time to suit the required SOP information. Can you tell me which university you plan to submit this SOP to and what the prompt requirements are?

The information regarding the prompt requirements will allow me to assess if any portion of this essay is usable in a statement of purpose. You see, what you have written is not a statement of purpose, nor a personal statement. It reads more like an academic autobiography, which is not what either essay requires. The statement of purpose needs to respond to only a specific set of information. On a general level, it should only present information regarding the following:

1. The length of time you have had work experience in the field of Game Development. Indicate any relevant internships or part time jobs as well since you are often times required to have at least 2 years work experience in the field. This information does not apply if you are applying for an MS that allows for direct from college enrolment.

2. Any significant college achievements that you may have accomplished. This includes and awards, competition prizes, or published work in gaming journals or something similar. You may take this opportunity to indicate a summarized explanation of your college studies and any pertinent information that might influence the decision of the reviewer regarding your admission.

3. The purpose you have for pursuing an MS course in Game Development. Do not mistake this for your motivation. Those are 2 different things.

4. Discuss the reasons why you chose this specific university. Align it with your career objectives over 5 years. Explain how the university masters degree relates to and will allow you to pursue your 5 year career plan after you graduate.

You have an over informative essay that does not really explain the purpose of your application in a manner that the reviewer can appreciate. If you wait to choose your universities first, then write your SOP based upon the proper, required information, you will find that your SOP will be shorter and also, more informative to a greater degree. What you can do for now is write a generic SOP from where you can pick out information for expanded discussion based upon the specific university prompt requirements for its masters course.