Online course in Creative Arts & Media

How To Start Your Career In Games Development

Learn how to start a career in games development by hearing from leading games producers, recruiters and new developers.

How To Start Your Career In Games Development

  • Duration 4 weeks
  • Weekly study 2 hours

Kickstart your career in games development

Follow the journeys of four people who recently applied, interviewed and started their careers in the competitive industry of games development. On this course, you’ll learn about the different skills used in games development teams.

You’ll learn how to assess skills listed in job applications and discover strategies for demonstrating these skills when you apply. You will practise sample interview questions and hear from industry experts on ways to stand out from the crowd. By the end of the course, you’ll be equipped with tools and techniques to help you start your career in games development.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 5 secondsWelcome to How to Start a Career in the Video Games Industry. Every year, thousands of people around the world complete games development, computer science, and arts courses, with the hope of building a career in games. If you're considering a career in video games, I would definitely say, go for it. It's a fantastic industry. I think it's a great place to build a career, and it can be very rewarding and very challenging, as well. I am just in awe of the creativity and the talent and just the technical brilliance of the people that I work alongside every day. I can't imagine working anywhere else that would be this exciting day in, day out. I could create worlds, and they became real.

Skip to 0 minutes and 42 secondsI could take a player on an emotional connection and have a lot of fun with it. And I feel like the video games industry gave that to me. Over the next four weeks, you're going to follow in the footsteps of a games programmer, a designer, an artist, and a producer as they recall how they got their first jobs in a game studio. You'll also hear advice from some senior people about preparing yourself for a career in games. I don't think there's any such thing as a perfect candidate. No. There are too many elements, I think, to capture the perfect person. Yeah, exactly. It was really nerve-racking putting myself forward for a job I really wanted.

Skip to 1 minute and 21 secondsI don't think I had really any confidence at the time that I was good enough for the role. If I don't put myself out there, then I'll never know whether I'll get that position or not. I hadn't done much C++ for a little while. So I went and read a C++ book, which was very helpful. The professional skills that I need in my day-to-day job would definitely be communication. Communication's a really big one. As the producer in the room, I'm often the one facilitating those negotiations and always making sure that we come to an outcome, that we come to a decision. A lot of the job is working with other people.

Skip to 1 minute and 49 secondsWhat you need to focus on are the soft skills that's allowed you to build and to create. So if you've worked in a team, talk about your communication skills and your team skills. If you've worked on your own, talk about how that's helped to develop those sort of skills. These are all transferable skills that the games industry will want to hear about. Have you been involved in other game events, been networking, involved in communities, been involved in game jams? Talk about all the positive stuff that you've made an impact in. That will really make a difference, and that will really show your passion. I never would have expected to get to work on a main character.

Skip to 2 minutes and 22 secondsSo I was very surprised when I come in, and they'd be giving me these tasks that were to work with that kind of stuff. I would certainly recommend a career in video games to anybody. I think it's a fantastic industry. It's very creative. It's full of intelligent, inspirational people. It's very diverse. For me, video games, it's not a job. It's more a way of life.

What topics will you cover?

  • How games developers got their start in games development
  • What entry-level games programmers, artists, designers and producers do day to day and how they work together
  • What are the hidden professional skills that could make you easier to hire
  • What recruitment companies would like to see in your CV and what could help you stand out from the crowd
  • Tips on providing evidence that you can do a games job, even if you lack experience
  • Inside the interview room – what games studios are really looking for at interviews

When would you like to start?

Most FutureLearn courses run multiple times. Every run of a course has a set start date but you can join it and work through it after it starts. Find out more

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you'll be able to...

  • Explain the different roles, duties, processes and working relationships in games development teams
  • Evaluate the technical and professional skills used in games development
  • Assess and classify your skills and the skills you wish to develop
  • Describe key stages and employer expectations for successful games development applications
  • Apply strategies to evidence your professional and specialist skills
  • Justify experience and skills in a games interview setting, applying strategies to prepare to answer common questions
  • Develop a set of questions to ask at games interviews

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for anyone interested in working in games development, including those who are studying or have studied games development at academies and/or universities.

Who will you learn with?

Chella Ramanan

Chella Ramanan

Advisory board member of the BGI, the national organisation for games culture. In 2019, Chella was named one of the Gamesindustry.biz 100 most influential women in the UK games industry.

Claire Boissiere

Claire Boissiere

Claire Boissiere is a Games Producer who worked at Kuju, Media Molecule & PlayStation’s London Studio. With 20 years experience in games, Claire co-founded Harbee Studios & is Vice Chair of the BGI.

Rick Gibson

Rick Gibson

CEO of the BGI, a new charity for games culture, skills, diversity and sustainability. Rick has been in games for 20 years, working with over 150 organisations to deliver change in the UK games sector

Who developed the course?

The BGI is a new UK non-profit agency that educates the public about the art, science, history and technology of games.

Get a taste of this course

Find out what this course is like by previewing some of the course steps before you join: