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Position Titles

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quote:
Original post by Lysander
What''s the difference between the various positions, especially lead designer and project director?


The quick answer is that it depends on the company.

A longer answer is that the lead designer is the guy who has the creative vision for the game; he''s the guy in charge of the artwork, level layout, etc. He''s in charge of the artists and other creative people. The project director is the person who coordinates everything--all of the programmers, artists, designers, etc. He keeps track of the schedule, resources, and so on. Thus, generally, the lead designer will fall at least somewhat under the project director''s jurisdiction.

Does that answer your question?

-Odd the Hermit

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quote:
Original post by Odd the Hermit
The project director is the person who coordinates everything--all of the programmers, artists, designers, etc. He keeps track of the schedule, resources, and so on.


What about producers, then? Does the project director have final creative control or veto power?

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I would consider the project director and producer to be two different names for the same job.

There are two key roles. Creative (designer) and co-ordinator (producer). As the holder of the purse strings the producer probably has the overal veto but in a good team I would hope the designer has control at the start of the project (to ensure that creativity is maximised) and then the producer moves up to take control once the development/implementation phase gets underway.

Dan Marchant
Obscure Productions
Game Development & Design consultant

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Normally, it works like this:

Producer: Money Manager, he secures funding, signs pay checks, and often has a big say in how a project goes.

Director: The man with the plan, so to speak. He has complete creative control (usually) over the project, and coordinates the programmers, the level designers, the character artists, the muscians, the sound effects guy, and any one else on the project.

Lead Programmer: The guy who draws the really complicated flow charts, and then turns them into code. He can several or even dozens of programmers working below him.

Art Director: At the start of the project, he works with the director to do concept drawings, and other things which the producer uses to convince the publishers. During the project, he directs the artists under him to produce the look of the game. In America, each level designer tends to be an art director himself and has creative control over his own level.

Event Director: This is more of a japanese position, but this guy works with the writers and scripters. Since the cutscene is really NOT liked in America, the closest you have to an event director is the NPC AI programer. In either case, these guys "fill in the blanks."

Sound Director: The position has a lot of other names, but this guy makes the sound effects, works with the voice actors, converts the Musician''s music into a form thats usable in the game, and various other things.

Because of the Mom''s Garage nature of the American game industry, every in a company tends to be some kind of programmer, and hold multiple responsibilities. In some of the more professional studios, they have this business model I''ve layed out.

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Some games have both a producer and a project director.

quote:
Original post by Inmate2993
Normally, it works like this:

Producer: Money Manager, he secures funding, signs pay checks, and often has a big say in how a project goes.

Director: The man with the plan, so to speak. He has complete creative control (usually) over the project, and coordinates the programmers, the level designers, the character artists, the muscians, the sound effects guy, and any one else on the project.


Here you are using "director" to mean "lead designer." I think that's more of a Japanese convention.

quote:
Original post by Inmate2993
Since the cutscene is really NOT liked in America,


???

Have you never played an American game? They have plenty of cutscenes. Sure, they're not hour-long talking head affairs like the MGS series, but they're there.

quote:
Original post by Inmate2993
Because of the Mom's Garage nature of the American game industry, every in a company tends to be some kind of programmer, and hold multiple responsibilities. In some of the more professional studios, they have this business model I've layed out.


Once again: ???

Even though there are indy games, most of the large game companies are based in the US, and they account for 90% of sales.

[edited by - Lysander on August 12, 2003 2:26:10 PM]

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quote:
Original post by Inmate2993
By Mom''s Garage, I mean the organization and titles aren''t as strict, and most of the team holds multiple responsibilities.


I haven''t seen any more evidence that this is more true of American companies than Japanese.

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