Rahul Sehgal

Pocket Gamer Connects 2016

PG Connects, an annual event organized by Steel Media Ltd., was held in Bangalore between 21 – 22 April.

We are presenting the first-hand account of the event from Rahul Sehgal, Backstage Pass senior faculty and Founder & Creative Director of Roach Interactive. Some impressions from Rahul:

What is the significance of this conference?

“India has 2 major annual events for gaming, NASSCOM’s Game Development Conference (GDC) caters to all forms of gaming whereas Pocket Gamer Connects focuses on mobile games.”

Who attended the event?

“Game designers, game developers, students, bloggers, indie development companies, the Press, and just about anyone who has something to do with mobile games. Many speakers from abroad. The whole ecosystem was present. “

What was your talk about subjective design?

I discussed how to engage casual through core players through appropriate game design.

How do such conferences benefit the attendees?

“The opportunity to learn, connect, and showcase is enormous. For example, you can set up a table for an insignificant fee and showcase your game under development. The feedback you get is priceless. If you are an indie developer, you can find resources. If you are a studio, you can meet publishers. You can meet business developers who can market the game. Not to mention, such events organize competitions. These competitions kick off typically months ahead of the event. Isn’t that a great platform to showcase talent?”

Your advice for students of gaming?

All students should attend such events. Entry fee for students is subsidised. You get to experience the whole universe of mobile gaming. That can be a transforming experience. Also, the networking, the exposure, meeting the old and new friends, and the very vibes…all of them count immensely.

game development

3 Skills to Blaze a Trail in Game Development

Have you ever wondered what it takes to be a star member on a game development team?

Communication Paves the Way

Wondering why you should be good at communication skills when all you want to do is build the next big game?

Whether you are part of a big game production house or a small indie game team, you will have team members from various geographies, cultures and perhaps non-native speakers of English. Now, how do you express your thoughts clearly to such an eclectic mix?

In your day to day life, you need to present your thoughts, ideas and feelings, prototype when needed using effective imagery, and document what you are doing. If necessary, you may even have to convince and inspire your team to explore your suggestion. You may have to write the game design documents, in-game screen text, messages, help, and whatever else is needed. This means you will rock if you communicate well to convey the energy and enthusiasm you carry.

Curiosity Wins Hearts

If you were living in a community, you would ideally want to know who your neighbors are. Don’t you?

Similarly, try to understand and appreciate all departments that participate in game development, art, programming, marketing and PR, writing, testing, and production. For example, if you want to become a game developer, understand how other areas contribute to and influence game development and vice versa. Ask your colleagues and ask on forums. And everyone loves to talk about their expertise. It endears you to people. And the ability to see your core area of expertise through the eyes of other members on your team will help you plan and communicate better.

And Team Players are Cherished

In recent times, have you heard of a game that was developed by a lone developer?

Not a chance. Today, games are developed by businesses, both small and big, that have a team made of developers, writers,  artists, designers, musicians, testers, marketers, and so on. What’s more, some of them may not be on the business’ roles. To work with such a diverse set of people, to give and accept their feedback, you should be a team player with a “give and take” attitude. As a team player, your team’s goals are top priority for you, execution of ideas is subject to the approval by the team members, and your decisions are made based on what is good for the team and the business.

Make Gaming your Career Pathway

With the rise of home console, computer and now mobile and tablets the Gaming Industry has bloomed. A large number of career paths are now available to people who are passionate about gaming. Game designers create great video games these days with the evolution of animation and visual effects. A lot of institutes are also providing professional courses to train passionate individuals as game designers.

Game Designer

Though primarily game designing was dominated by male gamers, but lately more and more female gamers have been entering into the field. The gaming industry is definitely something to think of, when you are choosing your career pathway.

What are the educational requirements?

If you want to make gaming as your career, the minimum requirement by colleges usually is a bachelor’s degree. Some colleges provide a bachelor degree too. Many institutes these days are also providing certificate courses for people who wish to pursue their passion in spite of their routine jobs.

A decent knowledge in gaming and computer skills is mandatory. Possessing artistic skills is an added plus point. Good verbal communication skills, a knowledge in coding, creative thinking, computer programming, problem solving and critical thinking are few other skills one must possess.

What else do you need?

Love and passion for video games:

Game institutes and companies want to teach/employ the kind of people who know the qualities of what makes a video game good or bad. People who have knowledge about what runs in the video gaming market, worldwide.

Learn everything you can about game design:

Look up the internet, learn and develop your designing skills. Do your research. Spend your time self learning. Learn about programming software’s such as C++ and Pascal. Upgrade the skills you already posses. Have nose for news. Read through the Internet about the constant upgrades, the News related to gaming.

Join a Good Gaming institute and Obtain a Course:

Colleges, schools and universities offer classes, certificate courses and degrees in Game Development, Game Art and Design and B.Tech (Game Development) and B.F.A. Acquiring accredited training in these areas will show a prospective employer you are serious about your chosen field.

The most important skills required for becoming a successful Game Designer and Developer

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Gaming has always been a passion for youngsters. Well, is this really true? The fact is that even elders take keen interest in gaming. Nowadays, it is often seen that social media sites such as Facebook is indulging in promoting gaming apps that are ruling the roost and find maximum downloads across App Stores. There is no denying that people are passionate for digital games. However, the talented workforce that toils continuously to render breathtaking and astonishing games is the real players who ensure that everyone is hooked onto these wonders. Do you know who they are? They are the game designers and developers

Know about this rewarding domain

Game designers are professionals who actually devise games and decide their working plan. Right from planning to defining elements and settings, rules, structure and story; everything is taken care of by these designers. Once these activities are successfully fulfilled, designers communicate their plan to developers who actually develop the premise for these games. Moreover, both designers and developers along with others involved in the process need to ensure that the project is completed within prescribed time span and budget.

The necessary skill sets to become a successful game designer and developer

All the above job duties and responsibilities associated with game designing and development prove that these professionals need to work in tandem with teams from different verticals. So if you are keen to become a successful Game Designer or a Game Developer, then here are few skills that you must possess or work towards developing.

  • You need to be able communicators, as your ideas need to be correctly communicated to artists, marketing teams, producers and other team members
  • You need to possess the quality that enables you to receive constructive feedback related to your ideas and work
  • Interpersonal communication needs to be strong in order to present ideas; both on paper and verbally
  • Creativity and imagination prowess is a must have to dish out exceptional concepts
  • You need to possess at least basic skills in drawing and visual design
  • You must have reasonable knowledge in animation and graphics
  • Possess at least scripting level skills of programming such as C#, C++, 3D Studio Max, Maya, etc.
  • Need to have thorough understanding about theories of game play
  • Good story telling skills along with narrative development abilities are a big plus for these profiles
  • You need to have digital painting/concept art skills to build environments for the game.
  • Skills related to interface design along with information design too are a big advantage
  • Strategic and systematic thinking ability is necessary

The above are some of the important skills necessary to work as a game designer and developer. Moreover, aspirants need to be goal driven and passionate about the field. Problem solving abilities along with troubleshooting acumen are necessary traits. Moreover, hand and eye coordination is a requisite along with advanced computer and math skills for such profiles.

Find right training source

You need to understand that although you may be an excellent programmer, brilliant mathematician, great artist and talented writer, however passion for gaming and the process as a whole is extremely necessary. You need to breathe games and love to create them in a way that can engage people. Further, even if you possess some of the skills as mentioned above, good colleges and training institutes groom you to launch your career successfully in the gaming industry. You just need to find the right source to obtain this training and you are set to enter this rewarding domain.