As the world has become more reliant on remote settings, new technologies, and virtual worlds, video games have become more popular than ever. Video games enchant us with curiosity and exploration. They can transport us to different worlds without the typical limits of physical movement. With the video game industries growing popularity, the demand for quality Video Game Designers has also increased.
As advocates of future skills, we want to shed light on this career path and what it could mean for young people interested in the video game industry.
What is a Video Game Designer?
Video games have many moving parts – levels, characters, animations, game play, environment, story and much more. A Video Game Designer is in charge of coming up with the overall concepts for a game. They then work with their team, direct them and orchestrate all the moving parts to bring it to life. It is a multidisciplinary job that often requires you to understand a little of everything to be able to collaborate, communicate and create. Depending on the company or project, Video Game Designers need to practice a variety of skills like problem-solving, iteration, documentation and industry awareness.
What’s the difference between a Video Game Designer and Video Game Developer?
A Video Game Designer focuses on generating ideas and design concepts, whereas a Video Game Developer works on building those ideas with code to meet the vision of the designer. Both roles work on similar projects but have different responsibilities. If you are a creative thinker, Video Game Design may be better suited. If you are more of an analytical builder, you could consider becoming a Video Game Developer.
What are some of the companies that employ Video Game Designers?
There are plenty of companies looking to hire Video Game Designers. Here are some of the top game companies responsible for memorable games:
- Nintendo, Kyoto, Japan: Publishers of Mario Kart and Animal Crossing, HQ based in
- Rare, Leicestershire, UK: Publishers of Battle Toad and Kinect Sports Rivals
- Ubisoft, Montreuil, France: Publishers of Rayman Legends and Watch Dogs
- Mojang Studios, Stockholm, Sweden: Publishers of Minecraft and Cobalt
- Rockstar Games, New York, US: Publishers of Grand Theft Auto and Earth Worm Jim 3D
To get noticed by big name employers, it is important you have the skills and experiences needed for the role. It is also essential you have proof of said skills and experiences to present during job interviews. Do not be afraid to go the extra mile and create your own opportunities, network with people in the industry, introduce yourself and share your design ideas.
How much does a Video Game Designer earn?
A Video Game Designer could earn anywhere between £21k – £35k annually (Glassdoor, Prospects). Like any career path, your earnings depend on the company size and your experience. Recruiters are always willing to pay more for value-added. We advise those planning to work in the design field to take time and invest in creating a quality portfolio to prove your value in the workplace.
Which Fire Tech courses can improve my knowledge in game design and development?
To become a great Video Game Designer one has to practice a variety of skills to be able to collaborate, communicate, and create with a team. A great place to start when you lack experience is on a Fire Tech course. We run a project-based pedagogy that helps students create tangible projects for their portfolio. Investing in a portfolio of experiences and projects is a great starting point for young people exploring career paths. It is a helpful tool to track personal progress and persuasive communication tool for job interviews. Fire Tech courses are also delivered by expert instructors for real-time guidance to ensure students get the attention they need.
We recommend the following courses as a starting point practice the skills needed for designing or developing video games: