We were all born masters of make-believe. As children, we built castles in sand dunes and drew our fantasy worlds in amateur but earnest detail. Maybe you’re one of the special few who’ve nurtured that little genius within - just like our game designers! They’ve honed their skills, embraced their wildest machinations and are now the architects and sculptors of some of the most incredible imaginary realms. Want to find out they landed a dream job like this? Hear it all from Senior Game Designer Justin Yong and Senior Systems Designer Guilhem Marin!
What is Game Design?
In the discipline of game design, creativity is both an art and a science. It’s a huge family with several specializations including game design, level design and quest design, each working closely with one another. If you’re new to all this, here’s Justin’s handy summary:
Game Designers work on mechanics and game systems. What are the controls of combat and movement? How fast do characters or vehicles move, and how much damage can they do or take? They look after the logic of the world and refine things like spawns, weather or time of day.
Level Designers build the physical world of the game. They craft towns, buildings, roads and the natural environment. They help you blend into and interact with the world.
Quest Designers create the quests and content you play. They decide where players could go, create puzzles and lay clues to help players solve those puzzles. They provide motivation and meaning to actions you perform in the game.
Each track also has a path for growth and advancement. Justin started his journey 6 years ago as a junior game designer and is now leading a cross-disciplinary team of designers, programmers and QAs. Guilhem came from a computer networking background and started with hands-on implementation of features, creating design systems, high level mechanics and content. He is now managing multiple design teams and helping them communicate with each other. Lateral movement is also quite possible – it’s common for people to move to and from design and programming, QA, project management and within the different specializations. For someone building a whole new world, the sky’s the limit.
Why should I come to Ubisoft Singapore for game design?
Ubisoft Singapore is working on a brand new AAA IP, which is a rare opportunity in the industry and region. Guilhem believes that the scope, complexity and ambition of the project are one of a kind. It may get pretty daunting at times to sail into unchartered territory, but he loves the opportunities for learning, adaptation and the feeling of conquering challenge after challenge. This is a place for anyone who loves to think on their feet and acquire many new skills, because it’s an environment where every developer has a say in the development process and a chance at meaningful interactions with players. Great inputs can come from anyone and creativity is highly valued.
What makes a fantastic Game Designer?
A great design team understands the whole game development process from inception to player experience. Game designers need to be familiar with not just their particular feature, but all of the dependencies, realization and feedback from players.
What does that mean in specific skills? Here’s what Guilhem looks out in prospective hires for his team:
Creativity – The ability to find out-of-the-box, effective solutions for problems and the ability to synthesize something new out of old building blocks.
Openness – The willingness to accept feedback and work with the ideas of others, being humble when interacting with others and constantly seeking self-improvement.
Team Spirit – The skills to communicate with many different teams and people and the ability to inspire and motivate others.
With regards to background and training, Justin has some pro tips. He suggests having some knowledge of other disciplines such as art or programming. Knowing how to code or understanding aesthetics could make a huge difference in developing great systems, because designers work closely with art and tech families. You will be able to convey your ideas much better when you speak the same language.
What kind of people will I work with?
As masterminds of fun, the game design team may possibly be the most animated, enthusiastic people in the studio. Justin’s team has incredible fun at work because they’re always laughing and being their outspoken selves. But they’re also dead serious about pushing their limits and respecting each other in their journey towards a common goal – to make the best games possible!
Ubisoft Singapore is a diverse and welcoming family with passionate devs who would love to hear your ideas. You’ll never know if you’ll just happen to be the perfect fit until you’ve given it a shot. We know you love video games as much as we do – it’s time to make your own mark in this industry. jobs.ubisoft.com