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What country in is best/cheapest for developers?


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#1 plooby   Members   -  Reputation: 125

Posted 24 November 2012 - 07:03 PM

Say you wanted to quit your job and just live on the proceeds of game sales such as in the Android store and the iPad store. As a game developer you could potentially live anywhere in Europe so the best place would be somewhere:

1) Where the price of living is very low.
2) Where you have access to high speed broadband
3) Where cost of replacing laptops etc is low.
4) Where it has good dental care.

Where do you think the best place to live is? BTW Since I live in the UK I am entitled to live anywhere in Europe.
Possibly other places I could live with a 6 months working visa.

What do you think?

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#2 frob   Moderators   -  Reputation: 19624

Posted 24 November 2012 - 07:32 PM

Why?

If I had the option to move, I'd stay right where I am. I don't want to give up friends and conveniences and customs and my tangible assets I couldn't bring with me.

If I had to move somewhere, it would not be somewhere cheap. The most desirable locations have a tendency to become expensive.
Check out my personal indie blog at bryanwagstaff.com.

#3 et1337   Members   -  Reputation: 1450

Posted 24 November 2012 - 11:18 PM

Just be like Jason Rohrer. Dude lives on $14,000 a year. Here's a super interesting article about him.

#4 slayemin   Members   -  Reputation: 2140

Posted 25 November 2012 - 08:49 AM

Just be like Jason Rohrer. Dude lives on $14,000 a year. Here's a super interesting article about him.


This guy reminds me of David Thoreau's "Walden". I don't know if I could enjoy that kind of lifestyle though. It seems a bit miserable.

Eric Nevala

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#5 JTippetts   Moderators   -  Reputation: 8208

Posted 25 November 2012 - 10:52 AM


Just be like Jason Rohrer. Dude lives on $14,000 a year. Here's a super interesting article about him.


This guy reminds me of David Thoreau's "Walden". I don't know if I could enjoy that kind of lifestyle though. It seems a bit miserable.


Quinoa bread and lentil soup for meals? No meat, meaning no bacon? Only 4 pairs of boxers, and hair washed twice a month? Yeah... I'd go crazy, I think.

#6 Shippou   Members   -  Reputation: 1467

Posted 25 November 2012 - 12:01 PM

It's easy to live on less than $12,000 USD ( 9250 $ Euro )
a year - college students do it all the time ... of course the price of everything in Europe is extremely expensive

If you want cheap and technologically advanced - move to India

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#7 slicer4ever   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 3304

Posted 25 November 2012 - 12:23 PM

If you want cheap and technologically advanced - move to India

don't know who you talk to about india, but a guy on another forum i frequent is from india, and he's constantly bitching about how everything is 2-4x the cost of what it'd be in the us/uk.
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#8 Shippou   Members   -  Reputation: 1467

Posted 25 November 2012 - 02:06 PM

The guys I have talked to that live over in India, have given me a very good idea on the cost of living.
The cost of living, from the prices they have quoted me is about 1/2 that of the US, and 1/4 that of the UK.

India is ranked #90 in the world for most expensive place to live. UK = #13 ... US = #32
India is #86 in rent .... UK = #15 .... US = #17
India is #87 in food prices ..... UK = #16 ..... US = #25
http://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/rankings_by_country.jsp

 Reactions To Technologies:
1. Anything that is in the world when you’re born is normal and ordinary and is just a natural part of the way the world works.
2. Anything that's invented between when you’re fifteen and thirty-five is new and exciting and revolutionary and you can probably get a career in it.
3. Anything invented after you're thirty-five is against the natural order of things.

- Douglas Adams 2002


 


#9 frob   Moderators   -  Reputation: 19624

Posted 25 November 2012 - 02:22 PM

The thing about moving to India is that suddenly your paycheck will be smaller to match the local cost of living and customs.

There are many surprising cultural differences. How do you feel about the common 12-hour work day? Several hours are spent socializing instead of working, but it is common to stay at the office for many more hours than you may be used to. When it comes to business there is also a tendency to have less planning and more doing, with the expected results. When talking with co-workers from India those were the two biggest observations.


Getting back to the OP, --- why do you want to move?
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#10 L. Spiro   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 12710

Posted 25 November 2012 - 09:42 PM

Contrary to popular belief there are very cheap places here in Japan, even if you are in a big city such as Tokyo.
Other big cities such as Osaka are literally half the price of Tokyo.

So in Osaka you could get 25 square meters for about $400 per month, and that is inside the city. If you are willing to live a bit of a way from the station you could get the same for $220 or so.

My room in Thailand was the same size and only $80 or so per month (and it was very clean and modern), but since you want fast Internet I can’t recommend Thailand.
I would stick with the cleanest and most modernized country in the world (Japan), which also provides the fastest Internet (the country average is only #2 in the world, but that is only because of old people (Japan has the longest life expectancy of any country), which is far less common in South Korea—the actual average when considering only the people who are relevant makes Japan #1 by a very huge margin—here is my home connection (just $30 per month): Posted Image (South Korea may be #1 on average, but this connection speed is hard to find there, yet very easy to find in Japan)).


Also your paycheck won’t be like in Thailand or India (as mentioned by frob). For game programming I think you won’t find anything below $65,000 per year, and if you do then it’s your own fault. It’s easy to find jobs closer to the $90,000 mark.

And contrary to popular belief you won’t be working 12-hour days etc., at least if you are programming games. Yes, that is common in Japan, but not so much inside the game industry. You hear about those people a lot but they are working in other types of programming such as finance or general-use software.
I have never had to work overtime here except on 2 days when the deadline was close and a new bug was just found. Otherwise, for example now, I work 7 hours and have 1 hour for lunch, and then go home. It’s normal.


If you still aren’t convinced, I have 2 words that nobody can resist: 塩ラーメン.


L. Spiro

Edited by L. Spiro, 25 November 2012 - 09:43 PM.

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#11 Shippou   Members   -  Reputation: 1467

Posted 25 November 2012 - 11:15 PM

Contrary to popular belief there are very cheap places here in Japan, even if you are in a big city such as Tokyo.
Other big cities such as Osaka are literally half the price of Tokyo.

So in Osaka you could get 25 square meters for about $400 per month, and that is inside the city. If you are willing to live a bit of a way from the station you could get the same for $220 or so.

That is US 16' * US 16', which is smaller than most hotel rooms.

Japan has outrageous food prices ( $120 USD for a watermelon, $45 per LB for grapes ?! )
Japan is #3 on the list of most expensive country to live in the world
Japan is #9 most expensive rent
Japan is #5 in food costs

 Reactions To Technologies:
1. Anything that is in the world when you’re born is normal and ordinary and is just a natural part of the way the world works.
2. Anything that's invented between when you’re fifteen and thirty-five is new and exciting and revolutionary and you can probably get a career in it.
3. Anything invented after you're thirty-five is against the natural order of things.

- Douglas Adams 2002


 


#12 Hodgman   Moderators   -  Reputation: 28421

Posted 25 November 2012 - 11:34 PM

If anyone is thinking of Australia (Europeans can easily get short term "working holiday" visas), I'd definitely recommend Melbourne ;) It's been ranked #1 most liveable city in the world a few times... but also #8 for highest cost of living... Living in the inner city, you could easily spend 1/3rd of your income on rent -- if you want to live cheaply, you'd have to live further out and put up with a 1 hour commute to work.

That is US 16' * US 16', which is smaller than most hotel rooms.

Yeah, my inner-suburbs flat is probably 50+ sqm, which is comfortable, but I pay about 4 times L.Spiro's quoted price, at a distance of 5km from the city centre (15 minute train to work).
I actually rented a tiny ~25 sqm flat in inner Sydney once, and that was $300 per week...

Japan has outrageous food prices ( $120 USD for a watermelon, $45 per LB for grapes ?! )

don't know who you talk to about india, but a guy on another forum i frequent is from india, and he's constantly bitching about how everything is 2-4x the cost of what it'd be in the us/uk.

Things that aren't common locally are going to be expensive anywhere.
How much is a traditional curry, the kind that the locals eat, in Japan or India -- probably extremely cheap.

Edited by Hodgman, 25 November 2012 - 11:36 PM.


#13 L. Spiro   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 12710

Posted 26 November 2012 - 02:38 AM

I have to second Hodgman.
The rent is actually a very good deal considering what you get, and remember that you have to compare that to the actual income you would be making. As I said, my room in Thailand was about the same size as mine now but only $80 or so per month, but the salary was also much lower (it was higher than average for the country back then but certainly not comparable to anything you will find in Europe, Australia, America, or Japan).

If you are not satisfied with 25 square meters you can always find bigger places. My friend lives in the same building as myself and has a 30-square-meter room, which would in Osaka be about $410 if close to the station, $230 if not.
Not satisfied? There is a place in Shinagawa in which I am interested which has 91.20 (the brochure is sitting next to me) square meters, 32nd floor (amazing view!!), and costs $1,700 per month. But Tokyo is expensive and Shinagawa is one of the most expensive prefectures in Tokyo, so the same thing in Osaka would probably be only $637.50 per month.


And all the prices I have listed include utilities, maintenance, etc.



And as for food prices, again, what Hodgman said.
But the bit about grapes is flat-out wrong. I buy grapes a lot and they never cost me anything significant—maybe 1 or 2 dollars for a quarter of a pound. While there are Japanese grapes, they taste the same or actually better than standard grapes, so I wouldn’t complain.

But the main point is that rare foods cost more and local foods cost less. Do you honestly think the price of watermelons applies to standard foods prices? I pay the exact same amount for McDonald’s as in France (though about 2.5 times as much as in Thailand). A bentos package of rice, fish, noodles, and some side things I don’t even know what they are, costs less than a dollar. That’s a full meal for under a dollar.

Overall the prices are exactly the same ratio as in any other country when compared to the actual income you would be making. Japan is #4 in per-capita income, but here again there are a lot of old people skewing the results.
Besides, you are talking to someone who lives in the most expensive city in Japan. I have to deal with food prices, higher rent than in Osaka, etc. I am in the most expensive part of the “#3 most expensive country to live” and I can tell you that money is no problem. Very easy to save up, and I am the kind of person who spends literally thousands of dollars on LEGO® and other hobbies.


L. Spiro
It is amazing how often people try to be unique, and yet they are always trying to make others be like them. - L. Spiro 2011
I spent most of my life learning the courage it takes to go out and get what I want. Now that I have it, I am not sure exactly what it is that I want. - L. Spiro 2013
I went to my local Subway once to find some guy yelling at the staff. When someone finally came to take my order and asked, “May I help you?”, I replied, “Yeah, I’ll have one asshole to go.”
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#14 kunos   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2203

Posted 26 November 2012 - 05:34 AM

the OP point is to live as an independent developer tho. I am not sure Japan immigration will let people in and grant working visa if you are not locally employed.
But I agree on everything else you've said about the advantages you get living in Japan, after spending some time there the rest of the world will look "barbarian" in comparison.... it has to be said tho that living in a 25sqm "house" won't be considered by many as living at all.

Back to the OP's question, I don't think you can find a place with low cost of living in europe unless you start thinking "exotic" and look at places like Romania. Far east, remarkably Thailand is a much better fit from that point of view, but you'll have to struggle with visas there as well.
Myself, I am going to move to the Philippines next year once my new game gets released.. the country is very friendly due to virtually no language barrier (pretty much everybody speaks english and english is the standard language in all banks, hospitals and so on), getting a visa is much easier, especially if you happen to be married to a local. Of course, quality of life is much lower than Thailand and not even comparable to Europe of Japan.. but things are REALLY cheap and 400$ should put you in a VERY nice and big house.

I probably think your best bet, if you want to stay in Europe, is to head north to Scotland.
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#15 L. Spiro   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 12710

Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:04 AM

Myself, I am going to move to the Philippines next year once my new game gets released.. the country is very friendly due to virtually no language barrier (pretty much everybody speaks english and english is the standard language in all banks, hospitals and so on), getting a visa is much easier, especially if you happen to be married to a local. Of course, quality of life is much lower than Thailand and not even comparable to Europe of[sic] Japan.

Trust me here before you make the biggest mistake of your life—DO NOT MOVE TO THE PHILIPPENES—DO NOT EVEN VISIT.
We have had some problems in the past few topics, but I am dead-serious when I say that you should not move there. I honestly could not forgive myself if you did. I have been to and sometimes even worked in every south-eastern Asian country there is, and I can just tell you that you need to stay away from the Philippines. Don’t go there even for vacation. If you had planned on taking a loved one there, now would be a good time to tell her that she is actually going to Cuba instead of the Philippines. Cuba is terrible but it is better than the alternative.

Speaking as someone who has been around the world, I am not joking when I say that I would take my worst enemy to the Philippenes before I would take a friend. Send your enemies there, not your friends. And if you plan on living there, you are an idiot.


L. Spiro
It is amazing how often people try to be unique, and yet they are always trying to make others be like them. - L. Spiro 2011
I spent most of my life learning the courage it takes to go out and get what I want. Now that I have it, I am not sure exactly what it is that I want. - L. Spiro 2013
I went to my local Subway once to find some guy yelling at the staff. When someone finally came to take my order and asked, “May I help you?”, I replied, “Yeah, I’ll have one asshole to go.”
L. Spiro Engine: http://lspiroengine.com
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#16 Amadeus H   Members   -  Reputation: 1180

Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:09 AM


Myself, I am going to move to the Philippines next year once my new game gets released.. the country is very friendly due to virtually no language barrier (pretty much everybody speaks english and english is the standard language in all banks, hospitals and so on), getting a visa is much easier, especially if you happen to be married to a local. Of course, quality of life is much lower than Thailand and not even comparable to Europe of[sic] Japan.

Trust me here before you make the biggest mistake of your life—DO NOT MOVE TO THE PHILIPPENES—DO NOT EVEN VISIT.
We have had some problems in the past few topics, but I am dead-serious when I say that you should not move there. I honestly could not forgive myself if you did. I have been to and sometimes even worked in every south-eastern Asian country there is, and I can just tell you that you need to stay away from the Philippines. Don’t go there even for vacation. If you had planned on taking a loved one there, now would be a good time to tell her that she is actually going to Cuba instead of the Philippines. Cuba is terrible but it is better than the alternative.

Speaking as someone who has been around the world, I am not joking when I say that I would take my worst enemy to the Philippenes before I would take a friend. Send your enemies there, not your friends. And if you plan on living there, you are an idiot.


L. Spiro


There's a why missing here somewhere.

#17 kunos   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2203

Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:12 AM

thank you for the advice.. I gather you had quite bad experiences there :), I know it's very very easy to.

I have been there many times already and have been happily married to a filipina for 5 years and have been considering this move for ages now. But I totally understand your point of view , I did live in Shibuya for 2 years, 2003 and 2004, and I can understand what kind of standards you are accustomed to :), thus your reaction.

Edited by kunos, 26 November 2012 - 07:13 AM.

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#18 L. Spiro   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 12710

Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:13 AM

There's a why missing here somewhere.

Why don’t you just point out where it is?


L. Spiro
It is amazing how often people try to be unique, and yet they are always trying to make others be like them. - L. Spiro 2011
I spent most of my life learning the courage it takes to go out and get what I want. Now that I have it, I am not sure exactly what it is that I want. - L. Spiro 2013
I went to my local Subway once to find some guy yelling at the staff. When someone finally came to take my order and asked, “May I help you?”, I replied, “Yeah, I’ll have one asshole to go.”
L. Spiro Engine: http://lspiroengine.com
L. Spiro Engine Forums: http://lspiroengine.com/forums

#19 Amadeus H   Members   -  Reputation: 1180

Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:16 AM


There's a why missing here somewhere.

Why don’t you just point out where it is?


L. Spiro


I think you misunderstood. I was interested in why this is such a horrible place on earth. Myself - I've never been, and thus don't know why.

#20 Olof Hedman   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2686

Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:19 AM


There's a why missing here somewhere.

Why don’t you just point out where it is?


The why that is missing is "why not philippines", but I guess only idiots would question that? :) (or people like me, with almost no idea about philippines at all)




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