10 Things You Will Not Like About Professional Game Development
Matt Weise gave a great presentation to a packed room at MIT last week, peppered with war stories and so-horrible-it's-funny anecdotes from his experiences in the game industry. For those of you who missed it, here's his list of awful things about professional game development, and each point was greeted with doleful grins and nods of agreement from the other industry members in the audience. Forewarned is forearmed, so here's my recommendation: everybody preparing to enter a game industry career should stop believing that anyone can avoid these pitfalls, but start anticipating and preparing for them instead.
10. Working with people who don't play games
9. Dealing with people who think "fun" is objective
8. Working on games and/or genres you don't like
7. Dealing with people who do not understand the design process
6. Being told you must kiss a publisher's ass
5. Having a design dictated to you over the phone
4. People who cannot communicate to save their life
3. Overtime (Matt actually skipped this one in the presentation because it's pretty obvious)
2. Dealing with people who can't work on a team
1. Realizing that no one has ever unknowingly made a bad game (That'll be you one day)
Doug Church visits GAMBIT
The GAMBIT undergraduate team had a visitor today! Doug Church, Executive Producer from Electronic Arts Los Angeles (to us Bostonians, he'll always be "of Looking Glass fame") dropped by the team's second sprint review session to lend his analytical skills to their current project.
The UROP team is currently two months into the development of their puzzle game, which we hope to put up on the GAMBIT web site soon. Doug reminded the team to always keep in mind what they wanted the player to feel, examining each game mechanic to see how it contributed or detracted from the desired user experience. He highlighted some fundamentals of good casual games: the rhythm of learning new tricks and strategies, the peaks and troughs of the difficulty curve, and the "potential extra achievements" that will keep players coming back.
Doug was extremely generous with his time, spending an extra half-hour after the sprint review to chat with the students about the realities of working in game development. A great day for the team with a great gamesmith! Thanks Doug!
4/18/07: Matt Weise, 10 Things You Will Not Like About Professional Game Development
5pm, Room 14E-304
Singapore-MIT GAMBIT Game Lab Speaker Series presents Comparative Media Studies alumnus Matt Weise, who has been working in the mobile games industry since his 2004 graduation. There will be a question and answer session with Matt after the lecture.