A career in game development can be a good choice for someone who enjoys working with computers and has a creative streak. Game developers take a concept and make it a reality through coding, programming and testing. You can find a lot of reward and satisfaction when a game you helped develop hits the market and users enjoy playing it.
Do you want to learn more about becoming a game developer? Here’s some information about this career.
What Does a Game Developer Do?
Your role can vary depending on the size of the company you work for and your area of specialty. A small, independent business may need you to play several roles, and you may learn a little about everything. A larger business may employ you for a specialized role working on a specific element.
Some of your responsibilities may include:
- Turning visual elements into code
- Monitoring stability on various platforms
- Reviewing code and recommending revisions
- Collaborating with artists, producers and designers
If you’d like to learn more about game development, types, elements and possible roles, do some research. You can join forums, take online courses and watch interviews with gaming professionals such as the Unity CEO for in-depth information.
How Do You Become a Game Developer?
One qualification of game developing is a love of gaming. You probably already have that trait or you wouldn’t be interested in a career developing online games. However, you’ll need some technical skills to get started.
Many companies seek job candidates with a bachelor’s degree in computer science or a related area. You may find an educational institution that offers a specialized degree in interactive entertainment or game design. These programs may have more niche skills and focus on particular topics such as animation or virtual reality.
Not all companies require employees to have a bachelor’s degree. In creative fields, your skills often carry more weight than a degree. However, completing a degree means that you have a strong foundation for your career. It lets employers know you have spent years developing your skills.
Many employers are looking for candidates with experience coding and using game development engines. You can get ahead by having skills with C# and C++ programming languages and Unity and Unreal Engine platforms.
How Can You Get Hired?
One of the best career moves you can make in the beginning is to develop your portfolio. Start with small, basic games to build your skills. As you master them, move on to more complex projects. Your portfolio shows employers what you are capable of, so you want to include your best work. The more projects you complete, the more choices you have for your portfolio.
You can gain entry-level experience by getting a job as a quality assurance tester. This job tests games for bugs and errors. It’s an excellent way to gain experience in the gaming industry.
Another way to find potential employers is attending networking events. Look for conventions, job fairs and seminars that focus on the gaming industry. Introduce yourself to as many people as you can and hand out your business card. You never know where a connection may lead.
What Other Careers Exist in Game Development?
Aside from being a game developer, you can use your creative skills and interest in gaming in other ways. Some other careers to consider include:
- Writing: Games often require scripts and dialogue for the in-game experience. Companies need writers to produce marketing materials, press releases and technical manuals.
- Animation: These professionals use software to create the characters, backgrounds, objects and elements of a game.
- Audio engineering: These employees create the music, voices and sound effects that enrich the gamer’s experience.
- Production: These professionals oversee projects from a managerial perspective and are involved from concept to completion.
A career in game development can be fun, rewarding and a great creative outlet. If you enjoy technology, learning new and ever-changing skills, and entertaining others, you may find an excellent career in this exciting field.