What to Expect in Your First Year as a Game Designer

The video game design industry is one of the fast growing job markets in the country. Video game sales are rising rapidly, which leads to great opportunities for new game designers. For many, this is a dream job. What better way could there be to make a living than to design video games all day and get paid for it?

The market for game designers is very competitive, but a new game designer can still bring in a decent salary. Employers are actively searching for the most talented new recruits they can find, and are willing to pay for proven talent. Another positive aspect of this line of work is that your salary will rise rapidly with experience.

Because of the competitive aspect of the industry, you may initially have to accept a job without the title "game designer" but within the game industry. Once you have your foot in the door, work hard, volunteer to help anywhere needed, learn as much as you can, and take advantage of every opportunity to prove yourself. In this industry, hard work will be noticed and rewarded.

As a game designer, your goal is to make a game that is fun and playable. You will use your skills to design a game targeted to a specific audience. You will need to get to know your competitor's products, including their strengths and their weaknesses. You will work closely with other members of a team, and responsibilities will be divided among team members based on their interest and experience. In your first year, you will be the low man on the totem pole. It will be a great opportunity to learn from others with more experience. The best thing you can do in your first year is to team up with a mentor and learn all you can.

You may have a chance to travel. Many video games companies participate in electronics conventions. You may be able to staff a booth or participate in panels. This is a great opportunity to network.

One of the great benefits of being a game designer is that you get to try out new video games before anyone else. You may only get to try the games being designed by your own company, but you may also hear about what other companies are working on.

There are some stressful aspects to the job. You will be expected to have problem solving skills and not to give up when potential problems arise. Things will move at a lightning fast pace at times, and you have to be able to work well under pressure.

If you design a game that becomes successful, your own success will come that much sooner. The video game industry is growing rapidly, and with that growth will come plenty of further opportunities. Best of all, you can do what you love and get paid for it.

Schools Offering Training Programs in Game Design

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            Game Art & Design (BS)
            • Online and Bachelor's programs include B.S. in Advertising, B.S. in Web Design, B.A. in Interior Design, and more
            • Curriculum focus on preparing students for a creative career by teaching them the fundamentals of advertising and design
            • Students can choose from courses that cover areas such as advertising concepts, art direction, experience design, and online marketing
            • Over 50 locations nationwide, with a student support team dedicated to helping students grow
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Game Design, Bachelor of Science (Online)
            • Campus-based and online degrees include Computer Animation (BS), Digital Arts and Design (BS), Graphic Design (BS), and more
            • Students take ongoing portfolio courses that allow them to build and refine their design portfolio
            • Courses teach skills such as advertising, branding, visual messaging, and concept design
            • Curriculum combines elements of creativity, art, business and life skills, technical prowess, and academic achievement
            • Online Courses
            ABCO Technology , Los Angeles
            Good for Working Adults
            • An accredited computer training academy preparing students to enter the IT industry as Network Engineers, Software Engineers, Web Apps Developer, Website Designers, Programmers, Database Administrators since 2000.
            • Holds A+ certification from CompTIA.
            • Located in Los Angeles, approximately 10 minutes away from LAX.
            • Flexible class schedules offered during day times, evenings and weekends.
            • Helping students start a career in technology within 3 - 9 months.
            • Educates with the mission to serve the needs of the local community and graduates by matching opportunities to skills.
            • Military friendly school.
            Show more [+]
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Named a Best for Vets school by the Military Times in 2014.
            • Has specialized in student-centered technology, business, criminal justice, health science, and culinary education for over 45 years.
            • Makes it possible for students to earn a bachelor’s degree in 2.5 years or an associate’s in 1.5 years by providing a year-round schedule.
            • Offers externships and clinical experience that help students prepare for life after they graduate.
            • Has 10 campuses across the mid-Atlantic, plus online degree programs.
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Laurus College , Santa Maria
            Good for Working Adults
            • Approved A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 2009.
            • Offers career assistance and resource services to both students and graduates.
            • Several scholarship opportunities are available to students who qualify.
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACCSC).
            • 4 campus locations in Atascadero, San Luis Obispo, Santa Maria, and Oxnard, California, with online options as well.
            Show more [+]
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid

            Latest Game Design Articles & News

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            Detroit will be hosting its first-ever design festival in order to promote designers in all fields in the area, according to The Detroit News.

            National Design Award ceremony takes place next Tuesday
            The finalists and winners of this year's National Design Awards will be having their annual ceremony a little late this year.

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