What Is A Video Game Designer?

"I am new to playing video games but I must say I am having a blast with them. More than the game itself, I am more interested in the people who make them because it seems like such a cool career to pursue. Please tell me more about video game designers."

asked by Luke M. from Fort Worth, Texas

As their name suggests, video game designers are the professionals who craft popular video games played by avid gamers. In many cases, they themselves are passionate gamers who are able to fuse their love for gaming with their technological brilliance and know-how in one cool career.

In this highly-specialized occupation, video game designers come up with game ideas for video game consoles and computers. From conceptualizing the storyline to coming up with the characters to creating the background for each scene, video game designers are responsible for the entire process of developing a video game idea. They also take care of animating and giving sounds to the characters.

Video Game Designers must also see to it that the system they create will anticipate every action that the player will have with the virtual game situations they have created. Thus, their hours are spent testing and perfecting the game environment. The process of designing and making a game can take at least two years, with video game designers working in teams to complete the entire game.

Video game designers need to be artistic because they take care of the overall concept of the game. They should still have some knowledge of computer programming in order to be effective in their jobs. Sufficient knowledge of programming is integral, particularly during the testing and debugging process after the initial version of the game is released.

It should be understood that video game designers are responsible for the artistic and creative aspects of the game so they need to have excellent graphic design skills. The technical task of actually building the game from the ground up belongs to video game developers. They are the ones who turn the sketches and ideas of video game designers into graphics and the adventures that gamers need to overcome into various levels and stages of the actual game. Video game developers need to have advanced knowledge of computer programming.

In addition to artistic skills, video game designers need to have an understanding of psychology and human drama. These are very important in order to create compelling games that will get gamers hooked from one level to another. They also need to know the kind of ideas that avid gamers will patronize and try to create a game along these lines.

A video game designer can work in small or large gaming studios. Those who are still starting in the industry may find it easier to get a job in smaller gaming companies and build their skills and reputation from there.

With experience and a string of hit games under their belt, the dedicated video game designer may look for greener pastures in larger firms. Due to the fierce competition in the gaming industry, a career as a video game designer can be stressful. Still, for something that one loves to do, it’s a dream job.

Career Spotlight: Video Game Designer

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