Animation and Video Game Design are among the hottest careers of the moment for graphic designers and game enthusiasts everywhere. The skills involved appeal particularly to competitive tech-savvy types, as well as to artists finally able to earn a living at their art. In the United States, roughly one out of eleven jobs available to Video Game Designers and Animators is situated somewhere in Texas. A great number of these are in or near Houston.
Houston Schools and Training Programs for Video Game Design
Numerous local colleges and Universities offer professional degrees in Animation and Video Game Design. Students interested in pursuing this career can major in computer science with emphasis on digital graphics. Or they can earn a degree in programming or math with emphasis on game design and animation. Houston schools offering degrees Animation and Interactive Game Design include University of Houston at Clear Lake, American Intercontinental University, DeVry and The Art Institute. In addition to these, lesser known schools throughout the area provide similar training programs.
Working as a Video Game Designer in Houston
Professional Animators and Video Game Designers are often avid gamers who take home fat paychecks for doing what they like to do. As you might expect, their salaries vary depending on factors like experience, effort, talent, ability, personality, networking and geographic location. On average, Animators and Video Game Designers in the United States earn anywhere from $34,000 to more than $100,000 per year. But this statistic does not take into account the salaries of self-employed individuals.
Houston businesses employ thousands of Animators and Video Game Designers. Local companies hiring for these positions include software publishers, mobile phone service providers, colleges, universities, graphic design firms and advertising agencies like Tangelo, Phillips and They Creative. Some first rate designers work for local film companies like Panda Entertainment or Roadster Productions.
Employers frequently require a degree and several years of design experience for entry level positions in Animation and Video Game Design. But you don't necessarily have to work for a firm, considering the enormous wealth of independent businesses and websites featuring (or wanting to feature) their own video games. Professional Animators and Video Game Designers often do freelance consulting work from home. These designers make their own schedules and land gigs as independent contractors. They are often employed by more than one company.
Recommended Skills for Video Game Designers
Basically, a Video Game Designer makes up the rules of the game, decides on a scoring system and develops a series of puzzles and exciting challenges to keep the players intrigued. Then the designer either creates the artwork or consults with professional Animators and other graphic artists to capture the visual style most appropriate to the theme of the game. Professional Video Game Designers study math, computer science, digital graphics, game theory, story lines, character development and other subjects in order to create realistic, action-packed interactive games, which they hope will be downloaded by the millions.