Ben Randall cooking up a career in games

After a change in his family’s circumstances, professional chef Ben Randall quit working in a Michelin Star kitchen to study Games Development with Train2Game and to have more time with his family

When life changed for Train2Game student Ben Randall, 27, from Peterborough, he left his job in the kitchen to spend more time with his family and study Games Development. He now balances his time studying QA, working with student studio Devils Inc. and looking after his children and temporarily disabled wife.

Getting into studying Games

“I took to work as a chef straight out of school and worked my way up on the kitchen ladder to being sous chef in a number of restaurants with high standards (even a Michelin star).”

“I then started a family and the working hours got longer and it was hard to be with my family. Then unfortunately my wife fell ill and is now temporarily disabled. My wife and kids need my care at home so I had to leave work, but I’m not the type to sit around doing nothing.”

“That’s when a friend of mine said he was on a fantastic art and animation course for video game development and I jumped on that bandwagon faster than Mario on Koopa’s, but my six year old daughter has better art work than I do, so I spoke to the Train2Game rep that came out and he recommended QA.”

Studying with Train2Game

“I have been studying with Train2Game for around eight-nine months now. It’s been great so far. The course has a good learning curve to it so I find that it’s getting harder but you have already learnt all you need to cope with that change.”

“I am pleased with the course, mainly that for a QA tester to train at college they would need to study IT and software based courses and then move over to the gaming industry, whereas T2G specialize the course to the right area.”

“The positives of the Train2Game courses are they are specialized and that you can do them in your own speed, but at the same time you are not alone. I would recommend the course to others. I feel that T2G push students towards making a strong portfolio of work to present to employers later down the line.”

Working with Train2Game student studio Devils Inc.

“I have seen first-hand just how important teamwork is in the development of games and adding more work to a portfolio is great, but a QA tester is nowhere without something to test so I am happy to branch out and work with anyone at any level of their course experience.”

“It’s great working with Devils Inc. Casual, but great. Because of the nature of each member of the team working from home and using Skype to keep in touch the team trusts that each member is hard at work at their own pace.”

“I’m proud to say I am Head of QA in Devils Inc…. ok, Lead tester…… Ok, I’m all of QA (only one) for now as the project is in pre alpha stages at the moment. I have put a test plan in place and set a host server for a bug database and test anything the programmer throws my way. At the Beta stages if the testing process seems too large for one I will recruit testers to follow the test plan and delegate testing to them.”

“It’s a great opportunity to see exactly how each role in the team comes together in a project. I don’t think any amount of text book reading can demonstrate this better than real world experience in a development team.”

What’s next?

“We are now working on a new take on classic arcade game style space shooter in 2D.

The game will feature waves of enemies in a space setting that the player has to defeat with a small team of 3 AI planes to help. The game will switch when a boss is encountered to a 3D FPS fight (Lylat wars style) The game will then work on multiplayer features so that 4 players join forces or fight each other because.. who doesn’t love Co-op play?”

“In the long term future my dream is to work up within QA of a development studio (big or small) and be part of making triple A games you would be proud of.”