By Shyamala Elango
Game design is the art of elaborating rules and mechanics to facilitate interaction between players for playful, educational or simulation purposes. As a game designer, you work with a team developing and designing video games.
Why should someone aim for a career in the Games industry?
You get to enjoy a developing industry
New types of games and new technology are always on the horizon. Working in the gaming industry will have you on your toes, as you’ll have to keep stride with current trends.
The average salary for game designers, audio workers and artists is at least $68,000 according to the “Work for Play: Careers in video game development” report.
Multiple paths to follow
The barrier to enter into the video game development field is lower than ever. Entry-level video game designers no longer have to struggle to get into a large game studio, because there are inexpensive design tools they can use to start building a portfolio independently.
As the video game industry grows, more universities are creating curricula to support careers in video game design. These courses are usually offered within the computer science or media departments. Video game designers typically have a bachelor’s degree in game design, computer engineering, or computer science which takes four to five years to complete. Courses in a Game Design degree programme may include project management, integrated video design and technology, game prototyping and level design.
When most people imagine careers in the video game industry, they immediately think of developers or programmers. As the medium grows more popular, more jobs are opening up in the field. Tons of careers are available, and there’s something for just about everyone.
A video game designer will come up with a concept that will eventually become a video game, and will see that idea through to fruition. He or she will work with other members of the development team, including artists, programmers and audio engineers. Video game design jobs are not entry-level positions — one will have to work himself or herself up to this position by working in other jobs in the field. Video game design jobs include game designer, lead designer and level designer.
This is a growing position in the gaming community. As average team sizes grow, studio managers realise the need for quality communication skills. Documentation is a necessary part of any software creation, and games are certainly no exception. Aside from documentation itself, there is the manual to write, and the story behind the game to design and narrate in an interesting way. Every speaking character must have a script. As more writers join the gaming industry, game plots become more detailed and entertaining, causing the industry to be taken more seriously as an art and entertainment form.
Many games are a lot like movies nowadays. So background music plays an important role as it catches a user’s attention easily. A great way to get started in this field is to start with composing background music for a video game.
Video game programmers design and develop the code that make video games work. They work with the design team to implement its vision for the final product. Video game programmers specialise in one area of programming and are usually computer software engineers and computer programmers.A programmer can work on the game engine, the Artificial Intelligence features, the tools, hardware and network. Salaries can range, for those with 1-2 years of experience, from $55,000 to $70,000.
A lot of people see this as a dream job: “I can play video games for a living!” However, in order to be a video game tester, you must be very good at playing all kinds of games, demonstrate an outstanding attention to detail, and have lots and lots of patience.Many forget that testers don’t just play the good games; they also have to play the really, really bad ones. They must be able to find the flaws in order for developers to fix them before a title releases. This job isn’t easy going, but it can be a great fit for some.
A degree in game development doesn’t necessarily mean a career with video games. With training in multimedia, art and programming, a game developer can easily succeed in other fields.
As Internet advertising expands, companies are looking for better ways to attract people to their websites. Interactive ads are becoming a popular way of doing that. Similarly, companies include fun, interactive content on their sites to draw traffic and enforce brand loyalty.
Or…bring out the creative innovator in you
Why do you need to follow another’s path, when you can make your own way! The same as in any other industry, you can be your own boss in the field of game designing as well. You can create interactive educational videos which will help students to get practical exposure to real world scenarios, like simulators to train new drivers.