|The members of the games design team|
The games design process can be completed by just one person but that person would need to be highly skilled in many different areas of the design process and production stages and have a lot of time on their hands! For these reasons computer games, much like anything else, are designed and built by a team of people each with their own specific set of relevant skills. The image above outlines the job titles of the 6 main members of a game design team. The list is not definitive and other job areas do exist. but these are what I consider to be the most important sectors. The job titles of animator, concept artist, level designer, programmer, audio engineer and quality assurance tester are discussed in depth in the Career Information section of Computer Games Design.
Having identified the various members of the games design team it is important to understand how they work together and where they come in on the games design process. See the breakdown of roles within the games design process below.
Producer:The producer of a game development team acts as the project manager, making sure that all of the different contributors on the team are able to complete a quality game on time and within budget. Producers create and manage schedules, assure the availability of resources and drive the team to success. Most of their work is done at the outset of the pre-production stage where their planning is vital in the success or failure of a project. Afterwards their role shifts to a more supervisory role during production and post production as they ensure all plans are going correctly, on time and within budget.
Scriptwriter:To help drive a game's story, a scriptwriter constructs compelling scenarios, dialogue and narrative for the video game's intro-scenes,cutscenes, endscenes and during gameplay. The goal is to create a story that draws you in and makes you feel part of the game or makes you concerned for the wellbeing of the characters or the success/failure of the game objectives.
Artist:A video game artist creates the graphical elements of the game, from the backgrounds and scoreboards, to the characters. The game artist uses various computer-based tools, including paint programs and 3D modeling packages to create richly textured elements that the programmers can integrate into the game. Check out our Photoshop tutorials to develop your concept artist skills.
Animator:Animators are responsible for the portrayal of movement and behaviour to give life to game characters and creatures, but sometimes animations are also applied to other elements such as objects, scenery, vegetation and environmental effects. Animators usually work closely with game artist and follow on their work from the per-production stage.Check out our Blender tutorials to develop your concept artist skills.
Level Designer:In a leadership role, game designers are like movie directors, defining the style and ensuring consistency of the game's look and feel. They are the visionaries, but they also have to come up with an exciting story that will produce good gameplay. Game development careers often challenge designers by stretching their imaginations and come up with new ways to play video games as the technology continues to offer new possibilities, such as motion sensing and full-body recognition. See some of our game design tutorials to learn some of the skills needed to become a level designer.
The video game programming team realizes the vision of the game designer by integrating the art and sound assets into a playable game. A lead programmer, usually the most experienced member, directs the other members of the team who each focus on a particular game level or technology within the game.
Audio Engineer:Sound engineers are technical professionals responsible for sound effects and sound positioning. They sometimes oversee voice acting and other sound asset creation. Composers who create a game's musical score also comprise a game's sound team, though often this work is outsourced.
QA Tester:As the video game is developed, testers verify that the programming is free of bugs and complies with requirements for certification on the game device. This can be done by repeated playing of the game's different levels, but also by using automation tools to recreate different scenarios systematically and repeatably. Their work takes place during the production and post production stages but it most vital at post production to ensure the game does not go on market with any major bugs or glitches.
If you do assemble a games design team together you could try our First Person Shooter game Tutorial series for your first project.
A helpful Infographic to remember us by...
|The Games Design Team Infographic|