I have recently finished a Masters of Creative Industries (Interactive and Visual Design) and am lacking a direction in which to move forward. Overall, i'd love to be a game designer, but I have been told frequently that no one just applies to be a game designer, so I have been targeting QA. I have applied at a few of the Brisbane based studios for QA work, but have recieved little response due to me having no previous industry experience.
So far my relevant industry experience stems only from my masters' major project, in which i created a flash (AS3) game, where i pretty much independently developed everything.
Since finishing my masters I have started various projects in order to create a portfolio, but have been unable to decide which project to focus upon, as I am not too sure what would be held with a higher regard. I am willing to learn any software, be it 3D modeling related, level design etc. I just don't know what to focus on.
I guess what i'm trying to ask is:
1) How do you get a foot in the door in the games industry when they say you need previous experience?
2) What are some recomended platforms for a rather new designer to work on?
3) Do i need to have a coder/modeler background in order to get a job within the industry?