Hiring a great Game Designer must be hard. In fact hiring for any “creative” role such as writing or art is a unique challenge, because theoretically the more “creative” a person is the less technical they should be. It’s a classic left brain vs right brain conundrum. <I don’t actually believe this anymore. Technical knowledge comes from experience.> How do you test and certify fairly for left brained people and activities?
For example let’s compare a Game Developer vs an Artist. For the developer there is a clear path to his career.
- You want him to have a science degree.
- You want his resume to list an alphabet soup of languages, even better if that soup includes your preferred language .
- You can look for things like awards, contests, high marks, best in class all of these things are good indicators of how talented he *should be* at programming.
- The artist?
- Printing the resume is a waste of trees.
- Jump straight to the portfolio and start calling references.
Because it just doesn’t matter, he could have awards, a fine art degree and yet none of that matters if the portfolio doesn’t match what you are trying to do.
So what do you about hiring a game designer? His portfolio is the sum of all parts. If you judge him solely on his portfolio, like the artist above, you might have well just asked how much money his last studio spent and how many people did he work with. Cause that’s what you are looking at. His contribution is buried deep deep behind the visuals, sound and programming that plays across your screen.