So You Want To Be A Game Designer


So You Wanna Be a Game Designer is a new GameSpot feature, talking to Chris Avellone, Ken Levine, Akira Yamaoka and CliffyB about working in the game industry as a designer. The foursome is asked about how they became a designer, the specifics of the job, the reality of being a game designer vs previous expectations, good and bad parts of the job and getting a job as a designer.

Ken Levine: I remember being really surprised to learn about how technical game design was. A lot of people tell me: "I've got a great idea for a game." Frankly, who gives a crap? A great idea is meaningless. A great idea that leverages your existing technology, gets the team excited, is feasible to do on time and budget, is commericially competitive, and, last but not least, floats the boat of a major publisher... Now you have something. Akira Yamaoka: There was not much of a difference between my expectations and the real world of game designing...although it was surprising that you have to communicate with a lot of staffs outside development, like sales and marketing department, etc., in the course of game production. I realized that many people in different fields are involved, from when a game concept is born until the fans get the finished products in their hands. The scale of a game project is enormous.

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