Global Data claims that by 2025, the turnover in the global gaming industry will be at least $ 300 billion. The rapidly growing market of the industry is already in dire need of competent specialists, qualified craftsmen, and over time this need will only increase. It's time to think about getting a promising profession! In addition, one that is able to show your creative talents and will allow you to make good money.
Who is a game designer and what does he do?
If in general, then this is a person who is engaged in the development of games from the idea to the release. A game designer is usually called a specialist who works on the aesthetics, mechanics and logic of any game. This profession is at the intersection of design and programming, therefore it combines creativity, logical, accurate thinking, mathematical skills. The list of his professional qualities and skills can be truly huge:
- Business Processes
- Teamwork skills (brainstorming)
- Effective communications
- Writing skills
- Engineering sciences
- Interface design
- Public speaking
- Sound design
- Technical copywriting
- Visual arts, etc.
Each of these skills can come in handy while creating games!
How is the process of creating a game, what does the work of a game designer consist of?
If we distinguish the main stages, there are three of them:
- Release and support.
It all starts with creating a concept and, of course, getting funding (from the publisher, from crowdfunding, etc.). In the beginning, work is carried out on individual elements: drawing characters and locations, creating various levels, adjusting the game balance. Everything is conducted according to the main document of the team – the design document.
Gradually, artists, animators, level designers, screenwriters, linguists, programmers ... And it is the game designer who sets the tone for everyone.
As soon as the game is ready (at least by 80%), testers are connected - both professional and selected beta testers from among the "mere mortals" who are looking for bugs (bugs) even before the release, so that the end user can play a well-established, perfectly working version.
After the release (release), the studio does not stop working: it needs support, updates and patches are often released, add-ons to expand the gameplay, sequels and prequels, etc.
How to Build a Career in Game Design
Usually, graduates of specialized universities / faculties start with Junior positions, with junior designers and assistants. At first, most likely, you will have to do a little bit of everything - from prototypes and gameplay to narrative, plot, monetization schemes ... Plus good universities in this direction - that they "drive" their students through all stages of development, which gives several projects in the portfolio already for release.
If the game designer is talented and experienced enough, he will easily become a project (game) manager and will lead it from start to finish, managing the rest of the busy in the process. The main difficulty here is to cope with a group of talented and original specialists in order to unite them with a single goal and convey to them your vision of what the finished game should look like. Gradually, the game designer will be able to offer his ideas to management, knock out funding for an invented project - and create their own personal game worlds.
How much does a game designer earn?
In the US , the salary of a game designer is on average from $ 7500 per month ($ 90,270 per year), novice specialists receive about $ 47,000 per year - such data is given by Сareexplorer.
Where to study as a game designer?
24 out of 25 top universities in this area work in the United States (according to the Gamedesinging.org-2019, but in a global sense, the situation has not changed much by 2022). For example, consider The University of Utah, which the prestigious The Princeton Review placed on the 4th place in the country. Why the University of Utah? Because with amazing quality and great prospects, this university can also boast of a fairly affordable cost!
The program that deserves attention is Entertainment Arts & Engineering (EAE). In short:
- Degree: Bachelor of Science in Computer Science, Entertainment Arts & Engineering Emphasis
- Duration: 4 years
- Cost: from $ 21 600 per year.
EAE students produce specialists equally strong in computer science and in the visual arts, ready to work in the gaming industry, simulations and visualizations.
Computer laboratories, eSports centers, VR rooms, professional Motion Capture equipment have been prepared for training. Games are created already during the training - in total, there are already more than 100 projects in the EAE "piggy bank" on the site.
Very, very much practice throughout all four years! Students present projects to teachers and defend them, put forward and justify ideas, create teams and assign roles in them, learn to work with crisis situations and unplanned tasks. All this teaches creativity, accelerates thinking, helps to learn how to quickly and correctly solve problems, pumps communication and leadership skills.
The connections of the university also help: so students can work and intern, practice in partner leading companies, participate in real projects, go on visits to eminent studios, communicate with industry leaders and well-known practitioners, designers. All this forms a strong connection between graduates, students, specialists – networking is very important in future work. The University of Utah works with EA, Nintendo, Amazon Games, Disney Interactive, DreamWorks: often graduates receive an invitation to work even before receiving a diploma! And if we take into account that graduates of American universities can stay in the country for up to 3 years to find a job in their specialty, the opportunities for building a career are impressive. The career center at the University of Utah also helps graduates: there you can find a place for an internship or practice, learn how to make a resume, prepare for an interview, etc.
Interested? That makes sense! Our specialists will give you advice on all your questions and help you make your dream come true.