What Qualifications do You Need to be a Game Designer?

Posted by David Watson . on November 15, 2017

Game design is a lucrative industry raking in approximately $11.7 billion per year. There are almost 2,900 video game company locations in the US, and almost 70,000 people work in the development and publication of game. The immense popularity of video games is leading to a growing interest in video game design as a career. This post reveals the qualifications you need to attract the most lucrative companies in the business, or even set up your own studio.


It is a wise idea to study game design at college, since you will build a portfolio for prospective employers, and learn important subjects such as Character Design, 3D Modeling, Animation, Computer Programming, Storyboarding, and more. A college degree will enable you to delve deep into key concepts such as aesthetics, immersion and even English literature – knowing how to tell an engaging story in a game format is a crucial component of ‘hooking’ the end user. There are many elements of design that are not immediately apparent, including the economy of gaming.

All games have their own internal economy – resources that characters use (such as health, weapons, and speed) which may not be money, goods or services. College will also enable you to take business courses that may be interesting if you would like to open your own firm or startup in the future. A degree will also give you the option of moving game design to other related fields such as development or even marketing.

Talent, Ability, Drive

The qualities that make a game truly immersive are varied; they include a sense of realism (both social and perceptual), the ability to design in 3D, and the creation of an intelligent environment – one in which users perceive the computer as an intelligent, true-to-life agent. This requires more than artistic ability; drive – your commitment to solve problems and start from scratch if necessary, are important.

Efficiency, good time management and teamwork are skills that will help you work with others towards a common goal with others. You will also need to be a people person, to understand the needs of your audience and your client. Finally, you will need a quality that is difficult to teach or learn – an innate eye for color, space, texture and the ability to select different materials for each project.

If you’d like to break into an industry that is creative, dynamic and boasts huge growth potential, game designing may an interesting line to get into. While some game designers are self-taught, top firms are increasingly demanding more from new employees, including a knowledge of creative, technical and business-based subjects. College is an investment that will enable you to delve more deeply into your chosen field, but it will also help you explore other options if you develop an interest in a related field.

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