Did you apply for a games job recently?

The jobs section on Sumea has been viewed thousands of times, and from the comments I've received, there are a fair few people who find it a good resource. Anyway, my question is - how many of you have gained an interview from a game developer in Australia in the last 5 months or so? Did you get the position? Were there things you wish you had prepared for that you didn't expect, or any other advice for your fellow job seekers? and did you get the job? [:)] There's been quite a number of positions that have been opened in the last few months, especially for artistic/content building jobs, and I wonder if there is enough talent filling those positions, or vice versa..

Brain's picture

I hit Irrational mid-last year (sounds weird saying that...) for their Junior Artist position. I met up with a slice of the crew there, had an informal interview with Sylvia Chong, and went pretty well from my view. Unfortunately after a very long wait, I was turned down. I know it was my portfolio that was (and still is) weak and what let me down. Plenty of knowledge, but not enough work to back it up. Just wish I was told this earlier in the piece...

On the lighter side though, an online mate scored the position and he starts pretty shortly, so at least I'll have someone on the inside @;-)

I made plenty of other applications during the year too, with my only successful one being at Woolworths. As a nightfiller. *laughs*

Chris Bowden

Maitrek's picture

I have applied for nothing. I'm a programmer so I think there aren't so many positions available (believe it or not)....I could be wrong. However it seems to me nowadays that there aren't as many coders on projects as there are artists.

The reason I haven't applied is 'cause I'm still a bit of a baby coder, and I still have yet to finish as single one of my own self-imposed projects (hopefully this'll change in a year or so) and until I display any coding maturity I don't think there's any reason I should force myself into the workplace.

That and I haven't finished my studies and I want to finish them first.

Daemin's picture

I've applied all over the place, but I've only ever gotten interviews for a job at Ratbag, although I had a nice chat with the guys from r3 - both of whom are in Adelaide. I suppose that companies from interstate are not as eager to interview (or even reply to) applications not from their state.

Oh well, we'll see how everything goes.

davidcoen's picture

I have quite a nice collection of rejection letters. Had two game job interviews over the last year and currently waiting for 2 companies that have nibbled a little bit but and are in 'perhaps in the next few months we will think about talking to you'

looks like i'm going to be stuck doing contract work for the next forever, but if things don't look up soon i'm disapearing to work with some friends in singapore that i have been doing work for...

oh the fun, 'i love my work'

GooberMan's picture

I'm applying for coder jobs all over the place. Got word back from 2 today - Infogrammes Melbourne House aren't looking; and Krome's human resource manager has passed my application along to the technical director.

Brain's picture

Just checking, but are people hitting QA departments as well? Essentially the bestplace to get in the door, provided you can stand playing the same buggy game over and over and over again. @:-)

Chris Bowden

Meatex Salami's picture

I ahve been keeping an eye out for jobs which i could do with limited experience and are not mon - fri 9 - 5
There are 0 of them out there [:(]

It is infact ants who are the true rulers of this world!!!

Gaffer's picture

I'd recommend against trying to get in the QA route - applying for a QA job, is in my experience, a great way, to get a QA job - i've rarely seen people advance (within the same company) from QA to another role

maybe its more like this at other companies, but at irrational QA is QA from what i've seen

Glenn "Gaffer" Fiedler | Senior Programmer | Irrational Games

Crystalmesh's picture

Actually QA is a great way to get in, I know that alot of QA at Krome move up in the company if they put in the hours.


Blitz's picture

Where do the QA people advance to? It would be my assumption that the most likely advancement would be into design roles (Level design, or game design) and possibly into art roles from that.
Have people advanced from QA in other ways?
CYer, Blitz

mochumbo's picture

Ummm lets see, Irrational, krome, mircoforte, Auran, blue tongue, bullant and lastgun. A few "nibbles" but no interviews yet.I just want to make games! So i'm not discouraged yet, I shall just keep at it improving my skills and hassling development companies untill they either give me a job or take out a restraining order ;)

Daemin's picture

Yeah, persistance *will have to* pay off :-)

Meatex Salami's picture

Well i know that the testers at MF canberra do the level design as well. I went on a quick tour of their place during me cert 2 class.

It is infact ants who are the true rulers of this world!!!

Doord's picture

I have had an interview with MF in Sydney, in late May and have been asked a number of times to send more work. Talked to them at the AGDC and they said that they will be hire juniors some time soon and ask for my latest work.

But just last week I had a phone call from infogrames asking to do an animation test, to see if they wish to have an interview with me. Waiting on word from them now.

J I Styles's picture

Well I've applied to all the usual places, got some great contacts, but I've only had 1 phone based interview - but that interview was VERY positive, and looks like they're shipping me a few states away to meet 'em. Apparently the next meeting we'll be talking about money and relocation, so I think I've got this one in the bag :)

groovyone's picture

Well, I've contacted a few, and sposed to send a demo reel, but then I've been side tracked freelancing on commercial projects from international companies already. So I will get around to it eventually.

Platforms: GBA, GC, PS2 ... PPC


davidcoen's picture

arrgh, had been told i made the short list at irrational for a position and would be contacted with interview details, but after 2 weeks i emailed and was told the position was filled, buggar.

Brain's picture

Mmm, seems Irrational appear to have a habit of that. Get told to wait for an interview only to be told much time after it's filled. Ahh well.

Chris Bowden

souri's picture

To be fair, when was the last time you've applied for any job, and have that place email/ring you up personally to tell you the job was taken by someone else? [:)] I'm sure they must've had hundreds of applications for that job..

shiptu shaboo's picture

i aplied for a job @ KROME (BRIZVEGAS)
but got the not looking for artists in your area @ the moment.
KROME would be a good place to work i have some friends working there and the enviroment is very lax.
From what i hear halfbrick takes volenteers by application (BRIZVEGAS)

shiptu shaboo's picture

i did some concept art for a company when i was Hong Kong half way through 2002 called ENLIGHT.
They contacted me about a month ago and are currently looking for someone to do sound?
the pay is o.k Hong Kong is very expensive to live in.

Malus's picture

not sure if halfbrick is still looking, I think Pants and I just lucked into that one but give them a try.

Dean Ferguson - 3D/2D Artist


Enigma's picture

I've applied to a few, but I'm only looking for work experience and have had no chance!!! Not even close, Developers only want experienced Programmers and Designers... How are you supposed to get the experience if no one will take you on??? I'm only in year 10, but I want to start...

Malus's picture

Don't mean to be harsh but the thought of looking after a year 10 work experience guy while you have massive deadlines looming isn't going to appeal to many if any developers, maybe you should get invovled in a mod and download some tutorials.

When you've finished school you'll be alot better at 3D and have a good grounding in the software used.
Then apply for jobs not just experience. Your young and you should use this time to your advantage.

Enigma's picture

Yeh I know... It's just that I want to start young, so I'll have the skills for when I'm older. I always thought there was big demands for programmers, but now I see everyone looking for work. And what's a Mod? And where should I start? [?]

Thanks... [:)]

Malus's picture

A mod is a term used for a modification of a game using the shipped engine but changing elements, be it art or code, normally art mainly I think. Another form of mod is a "TC" or "total conversion" which totally changes the game and sometimes alot of the code.

Alot of people join together to create Mods and its a good way to learn skills, meet like minded people and get a feel for working in a structured team environment with nasty things such as deadlines.

Look for mod teams in places like polycount, cgatlk, planetquake etc, theres a thread in sumea I think, havent looked at it. Alot of them are always looking for members, they also range from very talented professionals to people just starting off like you.

I wish I had known about them when I was at school.

Good luck Enigma, hope it helps.

Tripitaka's picture

If you're serious about entering the games industry, send a resume and a cover letter to every place you want to work for. If you're going along to an industry event like the AGDC, take copies to give out when you visit the booth of a company you'd like to work for. Have a chat ... they're surprisingly approachable ;). There's nothing lost and nothing gained even by sending an enquiry email to the company of your choice (although they might get a bit narky if you ring them up out of the blue and talk their ear off for half an hour ... try emailing or writing first).

You'd think that companies would just toss these in the bin, but in most cases it's very much the opposite. Hiring a new person is a massive pain in the ass - paying for advertising, interviewing tons of people, etc etc - if they can possibly avoid going through all that, they will. And a good way for them to avoid it is by going through the resumes they have on file to see if anyone might be qualified for the job first.

Keep an eye out for local beta testings ... sure, it's the bottom of the pecking order, but you will make yourself known.

Malus's picture

Thats good advice Tripitaka but I get the opinion from Enigmas posts that he isn't up to a level that would make him employable yet (Sorry If you are Enigma, just the way I read your post).

If that is true his time would be much better spent researching current technologies, the industry, how it works, what skills you need and getting involved in something like a mod to cut his teeth on.

He has a good 2 years before he needs to start fretting about getting actual work, get the skills, the industry knowledge, some contacts if you can, companies may not have work experience positions but like Tripitaka said they are approachable and an email or two with valid mature questions may just start off a professional friendship that will help you in the future.

Then when you think you have progressed to a worthy level do what Tripitaka said, sell your self, I like to call it "saturation pimping". :P

Enigma's picture

Yeh, I get what your saying... Where would I find a Mod group??? And no, I'm not very experienced at all. All my knowledge about this is based on books I've been reading, and a computers course I take at school.

Whats the best language to learn? I'm currently learning C++, and I was thinking I should learn Python after this, but I dunno...

Thanks for all your help, really appreciate it! [:D]

Sorceror Bob's picture

lotsa mods here

A warning though.. 9 out of 10 mods are a waste of time to work on. Most of them are fanboy counterstrike mods that never get past modelling "realistic weapons!!", let alone any in depth code work :P.

If you'd like to work on a mod, I can point you in the direction of a couple that some of my friends are working on, they'd be happy to have an active coder of any skill on board.