On this page you will find several milestones on my way to what I am today. Those might not be always in the exact right order, but I will try to be as exact as possible. If you expect this to be a dry list of programming achievement this is probably the wrong place. There is much more which brought me where I am today, than pure technical achievements.
1995 - Birth
I was born. Not really an achievement of myself, but I guess it is quite necessary for the other achievements to come. So yeah. Now I am here and finally ready to become a programmer. Well not quite yet...
1999 - First Console
I discovered the GameBoy of my grandma in the restroom closet. Equipped with Tetris I started my first steps into the world of games, spending hours and hours on the restroom. Later I started Pokémon Yellow, but since I couldn't read yet, my success was... not existent? Further consoles followed like my first GameBoy Advance, which I got from some rando on a second hand market.
2002 - School starts
School started and I got in my first contact with Anime. Namely, YuGiOh, Pretty Cure and Digimon of course! We didn't have a TV, so I visited my friends to watch them together. Funny times. Good times.
2005 - Nintendo DS Era
School heavily interfered with my desire to play Animal Crossing and Pokémon on my new Nintendo DS. Not to mention my passion for Mario Kart with friends, which I have till today. Still no desire to make those things myself. On my Nintendo DS followed the Lite and 3DS Version.
2010 - My first pc
With reaching Level 14 a fortune even called Confirmation (A church Ritual at 14) praised me with a bunch of money. It was finally time and I were able to purchase my first own pc. For school purposes of course! So we went to the store and bought one of the shelf. The first game on it? Minecraft of course! It was not much, but it was a pc, and it was even able to play Skyrim two years later!
2012 - Skyrim
With Skyrim my love for big worlds and good stories was born. But not only that. Minecraft made good progress and as everyone I dreamed of owning a big server back then. So what I did was of course renting a cheap gameserver at Nitrado. Spending my hard-earned money on PaySafe cards to pay the bills. Of course this failed, and the server got destroyed several times. But it were funny times and I probably learned a lot. First touches on configuration of a server, although not very technical. And a new dream was born: One day I will develop my own plugins.
2014 - Time to learn Java?
Yeah, we all have dreams. And since especially young people like to talk about them, I told a friend that I want to learn how to program stuff for minecraft aka java. She lent me a book, which I probably kept till today. Sorry for that. It was the all famous "java island" book ("Java is auch eine Insel" in german). Full of motivation I started... and stopped after 20 pages... Guess every success starts with a failure. My dreams put aside I focused on something new
2014 - The MMORPG Years
School of course, my parents thought. But no it was my MMORPG phase. I started playing tera. 1 year before my high school graduation. Of course, it was a good idea. I learned a lot during that time. Get to know new people of which some are important to me till today. So while others spend hours on learning I spend hours on learning... boss fights. It was a fun time, but also probably one of my biggest failures in school.
2015 - Graduation and move to Berlin
Eventually I still managed to graduate. Not as good as one would want, but I got my sheet of paper, which no one cares about anyway after studying. "So what now." That's probably what a lot of us thought. My thoughts were just: "Lets go to Berlin" "Why Berlin?" one would probably ask. It was the only city where I already knew some people. I went there before and had a quite established group of people around me. What to do there? Not sure, so I volunteered for a year.
2015 - Volunteer Year
During my volunteer year I taught old people what the internet is and why "I did nothing" is not a valid excuse for adware on a pc. This filled one year quite fast and while I worked there at the day I still followed another dream. My dream from 2010. Yes, the minecraft server. In the past years I never gave up on this and playing Minecraft was a constant joy in my days. So I started to plan our my server once more. I designed a world, plot, market system and much, much more, filling more than 30 pages.
2016 - The decision
The decision to study game design was made in th mid of 2016. I was quite short and already missed the application times for the state universities. However, a private university is always happy to welcome you, if you throw some money at them. Sadly I was even too late for a scholarship which would have been possible with my references.
What my reference was? My Minecraft server of course! I put those pages to good use.
2016 - My pc dies
Finally, after serving me many years, my pc died. It even did a last flash before my PSU died, taking the mainboard and cpu with it as well. Fond of my new learned skills and since I wanted to become a programmer, building my own pc couldn't be so hard, right? And well it worked quite well! Beside ordering the wrong graphics card and buying a cpu cooler which didn't fit on my memory everything worked fine. And so my first own pc was born!
2016 - Start of my studies
And so my game design studies started. At first not even a single line to program. All we did was calculating some stuff like bits to decimal and hexadecimal and some very basic stuff. But finally the day came, and we started using: Java Kara. It is basically a bug solving mazes. Not really something special, but probably challenging enough already.
2016 - The game designer apartment
I started to share an apartment with 3 other people from my course. This was the beginning of a lot of night where we finished assignments and also ranted about games and other stuff.
2017 - More programming!
From there on we moved over to c# and AntMe. Programming an ant swarm in c# was already more interesting. Soon we switched over to unity, programmed our first game of life, like every good student probably did at some point.
2017 - Start at the golden M
Soon I noticed that my live expenses cant keep up with my income. I chose the way of least effort and applied at the big burger company with the golden M. I got accepted. I didn't know I would spend the next 2,5 years there and completely ruin my private life and sleep schedule.
2017 - The first game aka Mixed up tales
Every semester had project weeks at the end of the semester. Groups were formed which then developed games. You then work on the game for 3 or 6 weeks on that project. Preferable 5 full days per week. For me that meant 9-17 at the university and two 4-hour shifts (18-22) during the week and one during the weekend normally. My first game was a hot seat card game in unity. It turned out to be quite some fun and even the game itself was quite bug free. The general idea was to use fairy tale characters to make a card game. Every character has their own ability and effect on the field.
2018 - Time of AI
It ain't much, but the AI module was probably the most interesting. I implemented a basic shortest path AI, which I happen to also have a video off in the depth of my YouTube channel.
2018 Trying to quit the golden M
I wanted to quit my job since it greatly interfered with my social, private and university life. However, a week before I wanted to quit, I got the offer to become a shift lead instead. Resulting in not less work, but better payment and a more predictable work schedule. So yeah I continued working there...
2018 - February Keep Talking and escape
Probably one of the most funny and also interesting projects. Since net code was not present in our minds yet, and we also didn't want to think about it, we decided to make a multiplayer game, but on two screens! It was an escape room, where two person, one ghost and one human have to escape an apartment in a specific timeframe. To do this they have to solve various puzzles and will probably also find out what actually happened here. We had a lot of fun building the sound and also a complete code based animation system. Yes, all moving objects are animated via code... A good idea we thought back then.
2018 Sep - Teddy vs Nightmares
Another university project. While the title contained nightmare, the project itself was a nightmare too. We decided to work with unreal and perforce. We greatly underestimated the whole scope of our project for three weeks. Additionally, we decided to work with unreal engine 4 for the first time, which we didn't use much to none in the past. In the end it was something, but it wasn't that great. In the meantime I also went to the shiftleader course.
2019 Jan - Start of Java and birth of Shepard
I finally started my first java project namely Shepard. Shepard like Commander Shepard from Mass Effect. Didn't I say that game heavily influence me?
2019 Apr - Last Project aka Under Construction
Probably the most polished project we ever did. Under construction was a mobile game with childs as their target group. Of course adults could enjoy it as well. Goal was to build a scyscraper, but from top to bottom. You had to get on the next field witht he same color to earn a bonus and receive bulldozers. Those were able to destroy houses around you and prevent the city from blocking the view of your beautiful tower. We spend two weeks of our six weeks on pure polishing and even did public game testing. The game also had complete self-made sounds.
2019 Summer - The Internship
It was finally time for the internship semester. We will spend half a year in a game or general technology related company. I was late again and I also didn't felt like I want to go into a game company. A professor of mine had a contact in a data science company and thought that this might be interesting for me. So I applied there and got accepted.
2019 - Python
Even before I started my internship I was asked to do something with python. But I didn't know python, nor have I ever seen it. So I did what everyone did (probably not) and took one of the numerious python books I brough on those ebook bundles. I read it through during the weekend before my internship started, and luckily I had solid knowledge when I started. During my first weeks I worked on a data representation in unity, which I sadly can't show here. It was probably a more nice gimmick, since of course I could make games, and they wanted to get an advantage from it.
2019 - Sql
Once I finished my data representation, there was no longer game design and development related work left. So what do all data science companies work with? Data! And where do they store it? In some Database and in my case in an SQL database. All those years I managed to avoid it, but now finally it catched up and there was no way to running away. So I learned SQL as fast as I could. Looking it the complicated queries we used to aggregate and rank our data.
2019 Sep - End of Internship and my work at the golden M
It seemed to be a success, I got more involved into backend development. Eventually at the end of the internship I got offered a position as a working student in backend development. Of course, I accepted and was finally free from my chains of the golden M. Normal working hours, no longer night shifts.
2019 Nov - Bachelor thesis
Now it was finally time for my thesis. I decided to write about procedural strucutre/landscape generation and procedural generation in general. It was quite interesting. However, I got sick for two weeks and couldn't work on it which added two weeks on my due date. This made me exceed the regular 7 semester time and I officially got my bachelor degree one week into the 8. semester.
2020 Feb - Graduation and Covid
The day when I turned in my bachelor thesis was the friday before the lockdown was announced in Germany. So I had my thesis presentation online and also got my bachelor degree via post. No fancy graduation party and stuff. But since I was still a student for a full semester, although I only was 1 week into the semester I could still continue as a working student for half a year.
2020 May - Minecraft
Now with the studies out of my way I finally got time to work on a dream again. Writing minecraft plugins! And the first one I wrote was schematic brush reborn. (Technically it wasn't my first, but the first which had some level of complexity. My first one was WorldGuardBatch ) Basically a rewrite of an older version of it. I did a lot of mistakes there and also adapted mistakes of the previous developer of the plugin.
2020 Oct - My first real job
In september my time as a working student was officially over. Luckily I got offered a permanent emploment as a backend developer, since they liked my work as a working student. So I stayed at the company where I once started as an intern, now as a real backend developer. That was also the point where I completely gave up on ever develop games for a living. During the presentations after my internship and in personal talks with my kollegues at the university, I head so many horror stories of overtime, abuse management and psychological pressure that I didn't want to work in that industry at all. So in fact I was happy that I could just continue there and build a portfolio which is not completely game focuse and could proove that I can work in a regular development environment as well.
2021 Jun - Linux times
In June 2021 I finally decided to switch to linux for development. And since I like pain and suffering I went for an arch distro. Since that day I never stopped using linux, but I tried different arch distros. That was also a preparation to finally manage my server myself, since a friend did this for me so far.
2021 Dec - First premium plugin release
Out of schematic brush reborn my first premium plugin on spigot was born. After nearly 1.5 years I finally felt comfortable to request money for my work.
2023 Jan - Docker is love
So far I used very hacky deployment ways for my private apps and hosted everything on the same machine. No VM or containers involved. Problems grew and grew, and I was in need of a fix. In January 2023 I finally decided to switch to docker for ease of building and deployment. I switched to a new host and also from arch to debian. Docker brought me a lot of joy and I don't want to miss it anymore in my tech stack.