The Growth of Gaming
INSIDER ESPORTS - Shashi "Detonator" Singh takes some time to talk about the growth of the gaming industry.
I recently read a news story that stated that while nearly every industry is being affected by this recession, the gaming industry is still going strong. Against all odds, the industry has had more success this holiday season than in most years, gaining a total of $5 billion. And, that’s just in December alone!
So, with more and more people looking for jobs because of the economic downturn, the news story really got my interest. To put it simply, there are a lot of jobs in the gaming industry. Sure, when you think of “gaming industry” you think of game developers and game designers, but those are not the only job titles available. As a person technically involved with the gaming industry for many years now, I’ve met many different people all who put their unique skills to good use to make a career out of gaming.
I hate using it, but take me for example. I’ve been working with video games for about 5 years now, turning a fun after-school hobby into something that pays bills and lets me travel the world. It started out as casually writing for a team website before I moved on to filming, photography, and managing a group of writers. From team websites I moved on to actual gaming media outlets and a few years after starting and moving from website to website, people began calling me things from Editor to Editor-in-Chief while actually paying me a good deal to write about my favorite games. This is all while still attending college.
Now, from that example you could probably guess that I’m a writer. Writing is one of the first ways to get a job in the gaming industry. Companies have websites and need those websites filled with content, so they’re always on the look for writers willing to contribute. As a writer you can find jobs on a lot of websites, from team and media websites all the way to actual corporate sites. For some examples, Dell started up their College Gamers project and needed staff writers to produce content. When DirecTV started their Championship Gaming Series league they also needed writers for their franchise websites.
Companies will usually pay per article, or once you work your way up you can work out a salary. Don’t want to write, but good at making images? Those websites need content, but they also need pretty art to make their site look good, so there are jobs for website artists, also paying by the art. Once you land a small job as one of these two you can work your way up, increasing the size of your portfolio and adding on to your resume until you have a packed resume. After that, you can always try to get promoted or try to get another gig that pays better.
These are just two jobs that people can try for in the gaming industry, but there are tons more. Since the gaming industry is also closely tied with the internet, you don’t have to limit yourself to just writing or designing. Another type of content that has become popular lately is video content, so if you’re good at editing videos or a good camera man you can also try to find jobs in the gaming industry. A great example is for media and team sites. They could definitely use guys on-site at events to produce video content for their websites. Some teams also need produce videos for their sponsors from time to time. Corporate sites also do promotional videos, but it’s a bit harder to get jobs with them unless you’ve made a name for yourself.
Companies also do look for website programmers to keep their site up to date with the newest web trends. These can be just updating the website with new functionality or making entirely new web applications to further their net presence. Speaking of web trends, to keep up with web trends companies will need more than just programmers. They’ll also need to amp up their marketing department to take advantage of all the potential the internet has with social networking sites like Twitter and Digg.
That’s just the tip of the iceberg. As I mentioned above, the gaming industry is closely linked to the internet and with “new media”. So, if you’re creative enough you could definitely land yourself a job.
It's no longer that gamers have to either make the games or play them professionally. Few outside the gaming community have recognized the growth that the industry has seen. For us, though, it's no longer a hobby that you do well into the night. It's our job to pay the bills.
So while others work jobs that they might not be interested in or enjoy doing, myself and many like me will continue to work in our favorite field from the time we were young. It's no longer an industry in the dark or an industry without future. It has spent it's time in the building stages and now it's time to take some of the best jobs in the world, in my opinion, to a broader audience.
Shashi is the Editor in Chief of myEG.net.