A career as a video game designer is a highly competitive field. It may be a good choice if you are a creative person with a deep passion for games, but know that jobs in this industry have become popular due to the advanced technology of new console systems and a high demand for new titles. Here are some tips on how you can get your new career off the ground.
Determine if video game designing is for you. Qualities you need include a knowledge of the most popular and current games, strong verbal and written communication skills, a team player mentality and good organizational skills.
Improve your skills. Play lots of video games. Learn how to identify what makes them good or bad. Understand what makes a game fun. Read books on game theory.
Go to college. Most video game designers have an undergraduate degree. Game design is a relatively new field that only recently has developed specialized courses in trade schools and colleges. However, you can succeed even if your degree is not game-related. (For game-related schools and programs see Resources.) Depending on the types of games you would like to design, degrees such as History, English or Fine Arts/Film can work to your benefit.
Build a portfolio. Include things like student projects and user-created content (such as levels or missions that add to an existing game). Sign up with an agency that recruits for game development companies.
Work your way up. Gain experience by taking any type of job you can get in the video game industry, such as an internship, QA tester or clerical position. Be persistent. Any experience in the entertainment or pop culture industry can help your resume. Jobs involving comic books, illustration or board game design can also be beneficial.
Network with as many game developers and producers as you can. Go to video game industry events. Join professional organizations (such as the International Game Developers Association). The more exposure you have, the better your chances that you may run into someone with a job great opportunity.
Stay professional and be patient. Be prepared to work long hours (most positions average over 50 hours a week). Learn to adapt to creative differences and varying personalities.
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