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What Can I Do with a Bachelor’s in Game Design?

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You may be pandemic fatigued and looking for a new lucrative path that you can learn how to do in your bathrobe with a cup of coffee. If so, you are not the only one. Also, you may be searching for a career that you love, and we all know gaming has become a form of therapy during the COVID-19 shelter in place era. Many people have found a deep connection, entertainment, and innovation from playing games on personal devices and home-based gaming consoles. Also, if you feel stuck inside without a path in place it is a great idea to look to the future of game development jobs. They are only projected to increase a minimum of 4 percent between 2012 and 2026 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Let’s look a little closer at the ins and outs of the offerings available with a bachelors in game design:

What Can I do With a Game Design Degree?

There is no scarcity of video game design jobs. One thing that is funny about this industry is there are so many ways to plug-in. Sometimes a game designer job will have a title that differs slightly from another one and the career itself can be so different. The categories within the game development jobs look like the following:

Casual

This refers to casual games that target any demographic of consumers regardless of their skill level, experience, or age. These games are designed to be the party pleaser that interest even mom, or anyone else in the room. They intentionally make it easy to engage in short gaming sessions that are simple. Some examples of casual games are bejeweled and candy crush to offer some context. This could be a style of gaming that you might be interested in learning how to create? You can see how lucrative the art of casual gaming is if you sit around a table with a bunch of people, many of whom are pulling out their phones to play a quickie while waiting for the dessert course. 

Handheld

Handheld gaming is as ubiquitous as video games at this point. Think about how hard it is to engage in a conversation with a young person without hearing about the Nintendo Switch or XBOX 360. There is so much creativity in handheld games as well as the diversity of story, characters, and trajectory. Some examples of games for handheld systems include Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Breath of the WIld, and The Legend of Zelda. You could easily tailor your education to gain additional expertise in handheld gaming if you are interested in this fast-moving aspect of the game design industry. 

Skill-Based

Many people who are interested in game development jobs specifically gravitate towards skill-based game design. These are games that are clearly not for the faint of heart, or the video game dabblers, but are designed for those interested in sticking with a game for a while to build advanced skills that enable you to accomplish milestones. This can include trivia games, fighting games–like that of the street fighter series, card games, which may include something like Hearthstone, puzzle games like everyone’s favorite Tetris, word games like words with friends, and arcade games like PacMan

Games Designed for the Purposes of Training

These are often used in the military or medical fields to train participants. The games are often designed to create simulations of events that might occur in real life and train players to react and anticipate what a good form of action might be. This is not only helpful for those in the military to have simulations of warfare but for medical students to be able to practice what they are learning in a simulated environment rather than on real patients. This is a specific niche of game development jobs that will always be in demand. 

MMO

This Stands for Massively Multiplayer Online games that are often known for being an outlet to connect people. Some examples of this are the world of warcraft and star wars. They often involve some level of role-playing. 

Jobs in the Gaming Industry

Deciding what type of gaming you are interested in can be a great first step because there are no shortage of jobs out there or ways to plug-in. It is always helpful if your bachelor’s program offers hands-on experience that could look like an internship. Many people start their careers as quality assurance testers. This is a great way to try out lots of games and understand what to look for when testing for bugs, challenges, and playability. 

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