A Game Designer is one who deals with all the propagation of the creative suits of a game. They work in coordination with the following role players to develop a game; Programmer, Artist, Writer, Composer, Sound Designer, Tester and Producer. Let’s first clearly assign the roles these people play in Game development. A Programmer works with languages like C++ and Unity to create codes for the game in whole. An Artist whereas deals in creating the artistic pursuits of a game. A Writer comes up with the storyline of the game. A Composer and Sound Designer work in unison to create the sound effects and music played during the game. Tester plays the game to identify bugs and help rectifying them. A Producer supervises the entire game development process and has a say in everything. About Game Designers, we will be outlining in here about what it takes to become one and is it necessarily important to know coding to pursue Game Designing.
In the book, “The Art of Game Design” by Jesse Schell, it is said that an all-around Game Designer understands animation, anthropology, architecture, brainstorming, business, cinematography, communication, creative writing, economics, engineering, history, mathematics, management, music, psychology, public speaking, sound design, technical writing and visual arts.
With the clear difference between Game Designing and other roles in Game Development put out front, let’s mark the skills a Game Designer should either possess or develop in order to become a remarkable one at that.
To materialize a whole kingdom, whatever that might be, to build a complete game, starting from imagining the environment of the game set-up to individual characterization of roles in a game, creative thinking comes a long way. There are certain roles in a game that requires assigning traits to, like Pawn who can receive input from the Player Controller and an Actor that can be placed in the game world. All these characters need to be designed from scratch which implies it extremely is important for a Game Designer to be a free creative thinker.
The first step in creating a game involves writing a Game Design Document or GDD. A GDD consists everything about the game down to tiny details. To write a GDD, a Game Designer should not only focus on making it look professional with proper grammar and punctuation, but also should make it sound simple and legible. Therefore, it is very important for a Game Designer to be proficient in the language to convey their idea.
Like writing, communication also relies on words. And if it is said that they’re of utmost importance, they sure are. And here’s why: Imagine an instance where you have this idea of a Pawn in your head and you’re trying to describe this character to your friend. Every person has their own unique way of imagining things, and if you fall short in describing the specifics of the character, your friend’s imagination of the Pawn would be different from yours. This is very likely to happen when a Game Designer is not adept at communication. At the end of the day, a Game Designer is not the Artist of Game Development, so, it is necessary to convey what’s on their mind to the artist and to be very specific about it.
Putting hours and hours into ideating something can quite possibly make a person feel like they’re in a rut. Getting perspectives of people from different disciplines can be refreshing and that is why brainstorming is important. Again, it is mandatory to know when to move along and ask other people’s opinion to stir things a bit. A Game Designer should be open to suggestions and should be able to makes changes according to those suggestions. Sessions of brainstorming simply paves way for a new road with multiple divisions, the task is to comprehend what is the best route to take and thereby, ideating it.
Game Development is not exactly a one-man work. Well, if you can work on it alone, we doff our hats to you. But here we’re talking about the less fortunate ones who can’t wear all the hats simultaneously. So, knowing all the basics of what goes into developing a game and being available to collaborate with other members of the team can come in handy. Again, it gives opportunity to get acquainted with people’s new ideas. It might come as a surprise what the team has to offer to your plan.
It is not exactly important for a Game Designer to learn everything it takes to develop a game but it can prove useful when one knows all the basics. During Game Development, the roles in a team are interchangeable. For instance, if you have a better economical solution to a certain aspect, you can go on and suggest your idea. This might be only plausible when you at least are aware of the basics.
Finally, we’re onto Coding. Is coding necessarily important for a Game Designer to know? Well, the answer is implied everywhere in this post. It can be completely an advantage to pursue Game Designing but it is not necessary because there are certain technical members in the team to take care of that part of game development. But, from the words of several influential Game Designers like Scott Rogers and Shigeru Miyamoto, it can be concluded that an all-around Game Designer is familiar with every skill that goes into the making of a game. Still sceptic about where to begin? Enrol at Monolith to get an Advanced Diploma in Game Development where with the best faculties who can ward off your scepticism, and replace it with confidence, you can become the ultimate Game Designer.