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What Is a Video Game Producer?
A video game producer oversees a game’s entire development cycle, ensuring each department is completing their work on time and delivering a quality product. Video game producers deal more with the logistics of video game production, rather than the creative aspects of a game’s development. Game producers have strong communication skills and know-how to work with their fellow team members to meet any deadlines.
What Does a Video Game Producer Do?
A video game producer handles the business and marketing side of game development, including budget management and contract negotiation. The producer will assemble and manage the development team, oversee production, and helm the schedule, ensuring the on-time completion of all tasks and deliverables.
A video game producer’s role requires flexibility: Sometimes their job is to help the software engineers with a technical problem, or liaise with executives and game designers, or work with the animators to choose which graphics will be central to the advertising campaign. Video game producers think ahead and plan accordingly, developing efficient, time-savvy strategies that ensure the successful production and marketing of a complete video game.
How to Become a Video Game Producer
A video game producer is in charge of managing many departments and must be able to tackle a multitude of responsibilities at any given moment. To put yourself in a better position to land a job as a video game producer, consider the following tips:
- Get a degree. Completing a bachelor’s degree program in business, game design, computer science, or digital media can help give you the experience you need to become a game producer.
- Learn the game-making process. Game producers oversee the entire video game development process. To become a video game producer, you need to have a working knowledge of each stage of video game production. Designers, artists, and programmers will often come to the producer with any issues or problems that arise, so it is the producer’s job to provide the help they need. Producers should have an understanding of computer programming languages like C++, Java, and C, be able to provide constructive artistic feedback, and know which milestones are feasible and what it will take to reach them.
- Climb the corporate ladder. Some video game producers start out as quality assurance testers (QA). Game testers who excel at their position can become a QA lead, work their way up to project manager, then demonstrate enough responsibility to move into a producer position.
- Perform routine job searches. Some video game companies are more generous with job postings than others, so periodically checking the job boards from those companies can be beneficial. You can also create a website or profile on a job site to advertise your skills and availability. Many smaller game companies can’t afford in-house programmers and will look for freelancers to fill the developer role, so be sure to market your talents.
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