Being a Game Designer: What's the experience on the job?
As a high school student addicted to technology, i've come across the saying that if what you are doing is something you love, it hardly feels like work at all. I don't know about you guys, but I LOVE video games, a designing them myself has always been a dream of mine. As I type I have a plethora of ideas all jumbled up in my head just waiting to be heard. So what kind of things are we talking about when someone asks you what a Game Designer does? Riveting and frustrating aspects alike, I would like to know as much as I can about my aspiration. Thank you for your time in advance.
Aspiring Game Designer, Dave Laplante #computer-science #computer-programming #computer-animation #hardware #user-experience
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Once you start developing your own games, you'll find out how much you actually like doing it.
Video game designers often work as part of a team to create video games. They come up with the games' concepts, characters, setting, story, and game play. Designers must work with artists and programmers to create the scripting language and artistic vision for a game.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported in May 2015 that the average annual salary for multimedia artists and animators was $70,300.
While some employers require a bachelor's degree in video game design or computer science, a high school diploma is the minimum requirement. You may need to have experience working in computer science, programming, or art. In addition, you need to be creative, have the ability to tell a story, and be able to work as part of a team. You also need to understand programming languages, software programs, and 3D modeling programs. You also need the ability to spend many work hours seated and looking at a computer monitor.
How to Become a Video Game Designer
The following are steps you can take to become a video game designer.
Step 1: Obtain a Bachelor's Degree
Designers may need a bachelor's degree, especially if they're planning to work for a large game studio. Although some schools offer a degree in game design, aspiring game designers can get the necessary training from computer science, software engineering, or related degree programs. The coursework for a game design program covers subjects like 2D and 3D modeling and animation, level and interface design, storyboard rendering, drawing, and scripting.
It's important that you also play video games. As simple as it may sound, having experience and familiarity with playing video games is important. Even at a young age, being aware of popular trends in the industry and understanding advanced technology can be beneficial. Playing video games can also show you how a game is structured and can give you a chance to start thinking of ways to make improvements for when you design your own game.
Join a game design club. Some schools have a club designed for students who wish to develop and discuss games outside of the classroom. This type of club generally covers all facets of game production, which could be rather useful for future game designers.
Step 2: Determine a Career Path
Even within this specialty, there are different types of designers, including lead designer, level designer and content designer. Additionally, game designers have a diverse array of responsibilities that may not immediately be obvious, so aspiring professionals in this field should consider what type of game design career they want to pursue.
Step 3: Gain Experience
Even after completing the required education, getting a job with a game studio can be difficult. Since employers require game design experience for most mid-level positions, aspiring game designers need to find ways to get relevant experience. Some companies offer internships and co-op positions for prospective designers. Small businesses may be willing to hire inexperienced game programmers or artists, which could lead to game design positions later on.
Step 4: Develop a Game
Game design candidates can get an edge over the competition by designing their own game. Students can use free or inexpensive programs to create simple games at first and begin working on more complex projects after grasping the basics. Each game can be added to an individual's portfolio and count as design experience.
Game design is a lot of things. Art, storytelling, programming, hardware, etc. If you want to design games, what part do you like the most? Programming, writing the story, or drawing the characters? Once you find that out, start looking for some books and try making your own game. Good luck!
John ’s Answer
Game design is the art of applying design and aesthetics to create a game to facilitate interaction between players for entertainment or for medical, educational, or experimental purposes. Game design can be applied both to games and, increasingly, to other interactions, particularly virtual ones (see gamification).
Game design creates goals, rules, and challenges to define a sport, tabletop game, casino game, video game, role-playing game, or simulation that produces desirable interactions among its participants and, possibly, spectators.
Academically, game design is part of game studies, while game theory studies strategic decision making (primarily in non-game situations). Games have historically inspired seminal research in the fields of probability, artificial intelligence, economics, and optimization theory. Applying game design to itself is a current research topic in metadesign.
Sounds like you are on the right track. Having a love of games and story-telling is a huge aspect of being a game designer. As an exercise, I would take games you love and break down the game design. What are the major story beats? What are the major game elements? What is the core loop? Once you've done this for a few games, you should be able to start seeing some of the pieces that go into designing a game. This should help educate you on all the aspects of what you need to come up with for your ideas. Then write those up.
Lastly, find someone in the industry that will mentor you and give you honest feedback. This will be invaluable!