Sorry to burst your bubble but game designer/game programmer is one of these professions that you can't just say "hey, I know what I wanna do in life, I want to be a X. Now I'll just go to college to become that!". You can't right out of the blue suddenly decide to go to college to become a successful game designer/programmer/pianist/geologist/astronomer/graphical artist, because to have a successful career in those things you need a passion, and if you had the passion for it then whatever you want to make into a career would be your hobby to begin with.
In general, drive and passion for what you do will lead to success no matter what field you work in.
But what if I had been a terrorist, fully aware of the knife?
You could have taken apart a computer during the flight?
Old programmers never die, they just become managers.