CAREERS IN GAME DEVELOPMENT
Electronic games is one of the fastest growing industries in the world. If you are interested in game development, read on to find out more about careers in this field.
Game development can be defined as the process of creating an electronic or video game. These games are played on platforms such as computers, hand-held consoles and mobile phones.
Studying Game Development
A degree in Game Development typically takes three years to complete. In the course, students will pick up essential skills to have a successful career in the game development industry. The three specialties of game development are Game Art, Game Design and Game Technology. Students can choose which specialty to study based on their interests. The first year of the degree will introduce students to the fundamentals of game development. Other core subjects are Game Business and Marketing, and Human Computer Interaction. Specialised subjects in game development include 3D Modelling, Game World Creation and Multiplayer Game Design. Like many other courses, the final year requires students to complete a final year project and internship.
Creating a video game from scratch is a long process and involves the hard work and dedication of many people in the game development industry. Some of the job titles for individuals who are interested in art are 2D/3D Game Artist or Technical Artist. Those who are skilled in design can apply for positions such as Game Set Designer, Storyline Creator and Game Content Designer. The roles of Game Programmer and Graphics Programmer are perfect for those who are interested in the technical programming aspects of game development. Other jobs in game development include audio engineers and game marketers. Employers of game developers include game development firms, mobile phone companies and design companies.
Daily Tasks of a Game Developer
A typical day of a game developer varies according to their specialised roles. A Game Set Designer is tasked with brainstorming designs and concepts for a game and presenting them through storyboards and scripts. A 3D Designer uses animation software to bring design ideas to life such as the characters and settings involved. Game programmers use advanced programming software to create a game and have to fix any technical problems and bugs throughout the programming process. Other than these specialised roles, game developers have to present their work to clients, publishers and consumers. Most of the work of a game developer is office or production-based, which means a lot of time is spent in front of a computer.
Game developers need to have strong technical and IT skills, particularly in programming and coding. They also need to be creative and think outside of the box especially when it comes to designing characters and coming up with game storylines. Logical and analytical thinking is also essential in game development. Other general workplace skills include being able to work independently and in a team. Game developers have to be responsible, disciplined and honour deadlines. A strong passion and interest in the game industry will help game developers find value in their work. In addition, game developers need to communicate well with others when working on a project or presenting their work.
Due to the popularity of electronic games, a career in game development has now become a viable option for school leavers to consider. Game development is unique as it combines the best elements of IT, design and programming.