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Man sitting on couch, facing the television, holding two video game controllers in his hands.

How to Become a Video Game Developer

by | Jun 28, 2021 | Productivity

The game development industry is complicated. These steps can help build you along the way to understand the process of becoming a game developer.

To be in the gaming industry takes work experience, persistence, long hours, and a true passion for games. 

Play Video Games

Man sitting on a couch with a video game controller in his hand

If you are reading this, you probably have been playing video games for years by now. But, this is a reminder to focus on why video games were made a certain way. Therefore, consider how the storyline was developed, why specific features are used, how the graphics were put together, then, think about the aspects that you like and aspects that you do not like. This will motivate you to think about the full development process that goes into a video game design.

Join the Video Game Community

Two men facing computer screens with gaming headsets on their heads.

Whether this is for social purposes, or networking purposes, being an active member within the video game community is highly beneficial. Playing video games is a collaborative experience. But, the creation of video games is collaborative work. 

Therefore, join the community by being on social media, being a game tester, and just experiencing gameplay with other gamers. 

Plan Out Game Design Path

A man staring at his computer games, with a headset on.

Usually, the career path will usually go from junior video game programmer, then software developer. Typically, there is a point to pick a specialty, whether that be in graphics, network, or artificial intelligence. 

Continue to Develop Technical Skill Sets

  • Mathematics
  • Creative art
  • Logic
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Problem-solving
  • Work with game engines to plan the framework where the game is built. This is more time-efficient than coding it. Game engines do inputs, scripting of events, physics, and artificial intelligence. 
    • Examples are: Unity, The Unreal Engine, and CryEngine
  • Programming skills with multiple programming languages such as Python, C++, C#, JavaScript, Java, Lua, and Assembly. 

Get a Technology-based Bachelor’s Degree 

An electronic screen with the text "GAME OVER" in red block lettering

In the past, computer science, computer programming, and software engineering were the only options for future game developers. While they continue to be great degrees to pursue to go into the video game industry and career path. 

Although, now there are game developer-specific majors and degree programs offered at certain universities

Some universities that offer video game development are Michigan State University, Rochester Insititute of Technology, University of Southern California, and Drexel University. 

Within these programs, students will work on several projects and prototypes. This is important for creating a portfolio. For game developers, portfolios are more important than any CV or resume

Complete a Video Game Internship

Woman playing a computer game at a desk.

Riot Games is a game studio that holds an internship. This internship program is specifically designed to help students get behind-the-sciences knowledge and experience of working in video game development. They work on developing necessary problem-solving skills and networking in the industry. 

To hear more about the Riot Games internship, listen to The Internship Show podcast episode about it.

Set Goals and Stay Dedicated

Blue Xbox controller on a blue background.

If you want to work as a game designer or in game software development, begin now. Many people have a desire to but never take those first steps. Undoubtedly, It takes a lot of time and dedication, but many attest to the rewarding nature of working on something that you are passionate about.

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Join The Community

Want early access to insights, content, and news about your dream employer? Join our community! We send one email per week so we won't clutter your inbox.

Congrats! You've taken the step to gain early access to information about your dream employers.

The Report Card: January 2021

Download this month's employer branding report to keep your company up to date.

Enjoy the news!

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