Video Game Developer Job Description

Video Game Developer Job Description, Skills, and Salary

Get to know about the duties, responsibilities, qualifications, and skills requirements of a video game developer. Feel free to use our job description template to produce your own. We also provide you with information about the salary you can earn as a video game developer.

 

Who is a Video Game Developer?

A new niche has evolved to become one of the most essential and patronized sub-sectors in the gaming industry. Video game development is slowly gaining ground and gradually taking over the gaming sector. The reason is not far-fetched; video games have a way of capturing the minds and attention of kids, young adults, and adults alike. Apart from being a go-to tool for leisure and relaxation, some video games carry and pass important messages that are of benefit to all and sundry. No wonder a plethora of individuals are beginning to explore the video game industry.

Video game development is the process and art of creating video games. On the other hand, a video game developer is an individual who specializes in developing and creating video games. This can be an individual who undertakes all the tasks and responsibilities; or a group of people who split responsibilities, duties, and roles. Also, it can be a business or enterprise made up of employees who perform several functions such as design, art, programming, or testing. Self–funded video game developers (often referred to as independent video game developers) work alone and are renowned for making and designing indie games.

A video game developer creates cutting-edge gaming software using his/her creativity, knowledge of coding languages, and storytelling abilities. Simply put, a video game developer adopts or employs coding languages to bring their creative concepts and ideas to life. They use their codes to make pleasurable, entertaining, and playable video games for web browsers, computers, and mobile phones. The chain in video game development starts from conceiving an idea to finding the right codes and ends with developing or creating the game. No doubt, video game developers are among the most in-demand and sought-after professionals today.

Additionally, video game developers oversee and mastermind the developmental procedure of a video game. They can use already existing designs or write coding that will bring the video game characters, environments, and other elements to life. They specifically organize and plan how players will advance through the different game levels. A video game developer creates the game’s mechanics, develops software tools, builds the artificial intelligence of the characters, and troubleshoots problems as they emerge. They ensure that each written line of code works as planned or intended. Hence, a good video developer must be vast and fluent in several coding languages such as Python and JavaScript for example.

Other expertise and specializations are needed to become an excellent video game developer; the ability to comfortably work with and navigate game engines like Unreal and Unity which powers everything the video game developer needs is a good example. Crucially, video game development entails much more than merely sitting behind a computer; a video game developer must have the ability to delegate and guide coders and designers. You should cultivate leadership and communication skills to have a better understanding of the needs of the team so they can help bring the vision to fruition.

Developing or creating a video game from the initiation phase to completion can take years and involve a team of experts and professionals. It begins when a developer or team creates and designs the particular game’s look and figures out how it plays. Then, objects and characters are animated; audio, programming, and localization follow suit. Finally, the developed or created video game is tested, edited, and produced for use and sale respectively. Depending on the individual, a video game developer may choose or decide to concentrate on a specific area of programmings such as engine, artificial intelligence, network, tool-chain, or graphics.

Interestingly, some video game developers specialize in certain video consoles such as Microsoft’s Xbox One, Sony’s PlayStation 5 amongst others. In contrast, some game developers may prefer to develop or create video games for systems. Most video game developers have specialties in certain types of games (such as first-person shooters or role-playing video games), while some focus on porting games from one system to another; or translating games from one language to another. To a lesser degree, some video game developers do software development work in addition to games. Several video game developers tend to build and maintain development studios.

 

Types of Video Game Developers

First-party developers: A first-party video game developer is part of an organization or firm which manufactures video game consoles and develops them exclusively for it. They may use the name of the organization, have a specific division name, or have been an independent studio before being purchased by the console manufacturer.

Second-party developers: Second-party video game developers are studios that take development contracts from platform holders and develop games exclusive to that platform. In other words, a second-party developer is a non-owned video game developer that makes games for companies and organizations.

Third-party developers: A third-party video game developer may also publish work or games for a video game publisher to develop a title. Both publisher and developer have considerable input in the game’s content and design, however, the publisher’s wishes generally override those of the developer.

Indie video game developers: These are software developers who are not owned by a single publisher. Some of these video game developers rely on the internet and word of mouth for publicity when publishing their games; though some indie game developers often create game software for several video game publishers on several gaming platforms.

                                                        

Video Game Developer Job Description

Below are the video game developer job description examples you can use to develop your resume or write a job description for your employee. Employers also can use it to sieve out job seekers when choosing candidates for interviews.

As a video game developer, you will need to;

  • Meet with the design team to deliberate on game concepts.
  • Contribute to the general storyline and concept of the game.
  • Generate storyboards and video game scripts.
  • Translate the design ideas (s) into a befitting and functional game code.
  • Code the base engine of the video game.
  • Contribute immensely to the animation and audio design of the game.
  • Create levels and animate characters accordingly.
  • Fix bugs and troubleshoot codes.
  • Develop checkpoints and game milestones.
  • Design expansion packs to create video game specifications.
  • Liaise with game designers and developers to set up technical resources.
  • Create production and procedures brochures.
  • Develop and produce prototypes in the initial phases of production.
  • Research and develop the right software and platform that can be used to support the video game.
  • Stick to the budget and work to tight schedules.
  • Ensure the game design is fully realized and performs to maximum capacity.
  • Respond to feedback from customers and conduct quality assurance.
  • Collaborate with all units to address technical issues, solve problems, and formulate solutions during the creation pipeline process.
  • Respond to and handle all the technical concerns of units and departments.
  • Provide continuous technical support after the game has been launched.
  • Work on upgrades to the existing games.
  • Ensure code quality by performing regular code review.
  • Improve the design of existing codes by refactoring the code.
  • Solve complex problems that may arise within the game’s production by debugging programs.
  • Ensure that the needs of a project are met by collaborating with the video game development team.
  • Perform effectively under pressure.
  • Ensure that the video game is completed on schedule by meeting the set deadline (s)
  • Plan resources and manage both the development team and the development process.
  • Responsible for the execution of projects from conception to marketing.

 

Qualification

  1. Education: University graduates and school leavers have different routes to prominence in the video game development sector. A university degree, foundation degree, or HND in computer games development and design, computer science, games technology, computer games programming, physics. Software engineering and mathematics can suffice. If you want to venture into design, a bachelor’s degree in interactive media, graphic design, animation, or games art and design can be important.  Employers also consider candidates with excellent knowledge and proficiency in relevant programming languages and familiarity with the video game industry. School leavers will be required to undertake an apprenticeship in software development or any other related role to progress to the role of a video game developer.
  2. Experience: You can be qualified for an entry-level position in video game development with relevant experience. For instance, an individual can be employed as a quality assurance technician with professional experience in programming and extensive experience in game playing. Also, expertise and an understanding of different styles, database skills, and platforms are desirable. Importantly, potential video game developers need to create a working demo of video game programming they’ve created to show their creativity and technical skills to hiring managers. Experiences gained from industrial training during your course or an internship are relevant in this regard.  Work experience is a valuable asset for networking and building contacts.

                                                        

Essential Skills

Video game development skills are the talents and abilities a video game developer uses to complete their tasks efficiently in the workplace. These skills include;

Collaboration skills and teamwork: The creation and production of video games is not a solo or independent project; rather, it involves drafting, revising, brainstorming and collaboration among members of a team. A video game developer or designer needs to practice and cultivate the culture of working effectively as part of a team. They should be conscious of the effects of their work on the entire team.

Creativity and innovation: A video game developer must be creative; they should have the ability to work with designers to develop life-like storylines and game environments. Creativity and experience with artistic projects can help the video game developer to provide compelling and worthwhile experiences for gamers.

Storytelling ability: This is one of the most important skills to have in video game development. A good video game developer must produce compelling plotlines, develop characters, and incorporate humor, conflict, and suspense to capture the game player’s attention and curiosity. Also, they should write interesting jokes, compose matching music, and draw catchy animations.

Knowledge of programming: You cannot be a good video game developer without adequate knowledge of programming. Most video game developers choose their programming expertise based on the games they want to design. They use codes to build game mechanics and environments. Developers must also be conscious of the modality or platform with which the player (s) will be viewing the game.  For example, some languages are better suited to mobile phones while others are excellent on consoles or desktops.

Knowledge of multimedia development software: Software applications such as Adobe creative suite and toon, and boom harmony help video game developers improve the quality and output of their work. Video game players often judge the quality of the game based on the clarity of graphics and animations.

Animations: Since design and animations form part of the core of video games, it is important to learn and know the relevant software involved. This can help the video game developer to produce immersive and stunning video games. Being familiar with animation programs can enable developers to show their sector knowledge.

Time management: Video game developers must prioritize deadlines; this ensures that the project is completed on time. You must be ready to work quickly and entirely with the specified time.

Critical thinking: Designing a video game involves planning and strategizing as players are expecting to find tasks and obstacles built in the game. Therefore, a video game developer must have the ability to analyze information and arrive at a reasonable solution.

Gaming experience: Lastly, having a gaming experience can help a video game developer to understand the nitty-gritty of the gaming world. It enables them to decipher what drives gamers to select certain games and provides extensive knowledge of game mechanics. This experience can also inspire gamers to understand and pursue current gaming trends.

                                   

How to Become a Video Game Developer

Enumerated below are several steps you can take to become a video game developer;

Get formal education: The majority of video game developers have at least a formal education background; mainly a bachelor’s degree in computer programming and other related courses. Recruiters and gaming firms prefer applicants who have earned and possess a four-year degree because they have more in-depth knowledge of gaming.

Develop your physics and maths skills: These two subjects are crucial for every video game developer. Hence, develop your coding skills by having a solid background in physics and mathematics. These skills enable you to create equations that can direct computer systems and graphics and lighting that make video games more interesting.

Improve your software engineering skills: A video game developer needs to be dexterous in hardware technology and other programming languages to write codes that will craft everything about the video game.

Sharpen your storytelling skills: A video game developer should know both non-linear and linear narrative and storytelling techniques. Storytelling is a big part of video game development; when you understand how stories develop, you will have all the needed tools and perspectives to write the code that is essential for storylines.

Create your video game developer portfolio: Next, try and design or develop your video games. Start with simple games and then work your way up to more complex ones.

Secure an entry-level video game developer role: There are challenges for new entrants in the video game development industry; thus, it will be beneficial to get an internship and work in an entry-level role with smaller studios to build your experience.

 

Where to work

To get employment in the video game development sector, visit the websites of video game studios and peruse for openings. Below are some of the employers of video game developers;

  • Broadcasters and educational institutions.
  • Information providers such as local, regional, and national governments.
  • CD-ROM and DVD authoring firms.
  • Design enterprises.
  • Advertising and marketing agencies.
  • Mobile phone companies.
  • Internet service providers.

                                        

Video Game Developer Salary Scale

The average salary of a video game developer is 273,000 NGN per month. This includes benefits such as housing, transport, health, and so on. Also, it depends on the location, years of experience, and the gaming studio or enterprise. The highest salary range is 420,000 NGN, while the lowest is 139,000 NGN. The median range is believed to be 268,000NGN. This implies that half of video game developers earn above 268, 000NGN while the other half earn below 268,000NGN respectively.

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