Motivation, initiative, acquisition of skills, creativity and a strong sense of community. These are the strengths triggered by gaming. What would happen- Jane McGonigall, one of the best known game designers in the world, wondered a few years ago- if we applied the potential of games to real life? If we used what we know about designing them (design) to fix what's wrong with reality?
The game designer is an increasingly popular profession. Technically it is the professional figure that takes care of the rules and structures in the development of a game. Its role, in qualitative terms, is increasingly crucial. It is for the reasons mentioned by McGonigall and also because the game formats are used in sectors that, nowadays, go beyond mere entertainment: education, military training, professional learning, urban planning. It is the phenomenon of so-called social gamification, where game designers can "play" – literally – an important role in the sector of engineers, urban planners and urban designers.
People who know how to negotiate networks of collective intelligence, designing games, will be well placed to contribute to the development of global business
The game designer combines the skills of the data analyst, charter, and programmer, sometimes the journalist but also of the artist-innovator. Furthermore, their vocation is an internationalized profession: codes and bits "naturally" overcome linguistic barriers. This is why the game developers' job market is growing. But what drives many young people to look for work in the sector is, first of all, passion. The transition from player to game designer is short, if you combine your skills with passion. But passion never goes out; perhaps this is one of the few cases where play and work blend beautifully.
The most popular figure today has programming skills in the C ++ language, user experience and user interface animation experience, but the demand for virtual and augmented reality experts and game artists is growing rapidly.
In the latest census on game developers, carried out in 2016 by a research group of the University of Milan, we found out that about half of the development and design of games studios has a company structure consisting of one to five permanent collaborators, while the 42 % of video game development studios have more than five employees. But the phenomenon of the so-called one-man company is growing, single person companies created by developers and planners who come together to work on individual projects. In this sector, fluidity is all encompassing.
The most common level of education among game designers is the upper secondary school certificate (40%), but more than one third of the graduates have a master's degree, a doctorate or a master's degree (34%). In most cases the skills are then acquired through professional practice.
However, universities and academies are growing – at least ten in Italy, both public and private – aiming to provide a level of education geared to the development of video games.
Those who work in the gaming industry have a future. Figures and trends confirm this. The gaming industry is bigger than music and cinema industries combined. It touches billions of lives globally. On the American market, in 2017 it recorded a turnover of 211 billion. In Italy, according to the latest AESVI report, the association that represents the sector, the turnover was 1.5 billion euros.
Software sales registered a turnover of over 1 billion euro (1,049 million euro) with a weight of 71% on the total market in 2017. While the so-called physical software, i.e. console and PC videogames in the traditional packaged format, has seen a 7% growth compared to 2016, with a turnover of over 370 million euro. On the digital front, on the other hand, the turnover developed by the app segment amounted to 385 million euros, while the digital downloads on consoles and PCs saw a turnover of 294 million euros.
The game gives you one purpose. The real game is to find the purpose
The market is bound to experience a boom, given the increasing number of players. 57% of the population aged between 16 and 64, 17 million people, has played videogames in the last 12 months. Of these, 59% are men and 41% are women. Looking at the consumer profiles by age groups, there is a marked concentration of women (13%) in the 25 to 34 years old category.
For the male gender, however, we notice a greater distribution of players in the age groups 25-34 (15%), 35-44 (13%) and 45-54 years of age (12%). As far as gaming platforms are concerned, mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets in Italy are the most popular, used by 52% of gamers. Following are home consoles (48%) and PCs from (46%).
The game economy is going through crucial phase. The challenge? Train new game designers who are able to bring together technical and humanistic competence. Especially in the hybrid entertainment sector, such as education, gaming is taking giant steps with the development of game based learning 4.0. Taking advantage of opportunities and creating new ones is a challenge, because, game designer Vineet Raj Kapoor says: “the game gives you one purpose. The true game is to find the purpose”.