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How to Become a Video Game Developer

How to Become a Video Game Developer

Video game developers (also known as game engineers) are charged with writing the software for the game. There are both outsourced and in-house development teams. Outsourced developers are hired by game publishing companies, but still retain a strong say in the overall development of the games.

Video game developers generally have strong engineering and mathematical backgrounds. To turn concepts and visions into concrete representations is no easy task. It’s a promising career to pursue, however, as engineers are one of the most hired positions straight out of college. Just like game programming, there is a lot of room within game development for specialization. One can focus solely on systems, the functioning of the software (how smoothly and quickly scenes appear), or gameplay, the process of engineering unique game features. Video game developers work closely with game designers, often letting them know if their visions are reasonable or even possible.

Because the game industry progresses so quickly, game developers need to remain current on industry trends and technological advances. Known as the “official trade event by developers for developers,” the Game Developer’s Conference is a notable and popular way to do so. This conference, held annually in San Francisco, brings developers together to discuss current ideas, best practices and the future of the game development industry.

With constricting time restraints and a heavy workload, video game developers often work long hours but are rewarded with generous pay. The work environment is also very comfortable and relaxed, with jeans and sandals being the common attire. Video game developers spend the majority of their day in front of a computer.

Video Game Developer Salary*

Due to the technicality of the job and unique skills involved, video game developers earn a generous paycheck. Game developers can expect to earn a salary averaging $97,000 annually. Once the senior game developer title is achieved, salaries increase to an average $103,000 per year.

*According to

Get information on game design degrees using the form on this page. School representatives will guide you through the process and answer any questions you may have about the various programs that are available to help you earn your game design degree.

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