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How to Become a Video Game Systems Designer

How to Become a Video Game Systems Designer

Systems designers focus on the consoles, hardware and special features used to run the games. They build devices to allow multi-player interaction, but also fighting systems, artificial intelligence and much more. Since these are such complicated and advanced devices, systems designers typically come from computer-related engineering backgrounds. Highly involved from beginning to end, system designers work hard to provide users with an enjoyable experience. While they generally report to the lead game designer, they tend to interact more with programmers due to the technical nature of their job.

It takes a diverse technical background to design video game consoles. Understanding of atomic physics, semiconductor theories, circuit construction and analysis, microprocessors, and much more is necessary. Video games are rapidly becoming more advanced, which means the systems they run off need to progress equally as quickly. Due to the intricacy and complexity of console design, schools are now starting to offer degrees or specializations specifically in systems design.

A systems designers’ job is not done once the console or delivery system is created. They continue to balance and fine-tune features and gameplay as feedback comes in from quality control leaders and the remainder of the game design team. If the game is being designed to play through multiple devices, it’s also the video game systems designers’ job to maintain the interchangeability between gameplay systems.

Video Game Systems Designer Salary*

Because of their depth of involvement in the game production process and the skills required to create the hardware, systems designers can earn generous salaries reaching $100,000 per year. On average, video game systems designers earn $82,000 per year.

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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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