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Staffing game development studio

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Question, I guess, to people with experience. Besides artists, programmers, etc. (creative part) who else (legal part) suppose to be in a team (accountant, business manager, etc.)?? Who can share position responsibilities? I would like to know also who _can_be/has_to_be on permanent position and who can be contracted. Thanks!

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You need someone to manage the company (MD/CEO)
Someone to manage development
Someone to handle admin/HR
An IT person
Lawyer
Accountant
PR person

All of the above could be the same person or they could be seperate people depending on size of company and your preference/abilities. Most likely the lawyer and accountant will be external professionals (as might the HR and PR jobs).

Seting up a development studio without knowing how to run a company is a bad idea. It would be wise to take a business management course first.

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Thank you. I agree. But lets remeber ION storm - John Romero's company. Instead of doing design he was managing company. He learned hard way. And what happened - he fail. Im consider myself as a designer and I, honestly, don't want to be a manager. That's why I was asking about staffing. I would rather hire somebody with managerial experience than I would be manager/designer at the same time.
Where can I find information or standart forms describing responsibilities of each individual position?
And also where can I learn about business management?? What books would you recomend??

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Quote:
Original post by motorsep
Thank you. I agree. But lets remeber ION storm - John Romero's company. Instead of doing design he was managing company. He learned hard way. And what happened - he fail. Im consider myself as a designer and I, honestly, don't want to be a manager. That's why I was asking about staffing. I would rather hire somebody with managerial experience than I would be manager/designer at the same time.
Where can I find information or standart forms describing responsibilities of each individual position?
And also where can I learn about business management?? What books would you recomend??


Depends on what kind of company you want to start. While I may be a little bit biased, this book covers a broad range of gamedev business issues.

(Disclaimer: I wrote a chapter for this book.)

There are a number of other Game Business books out there, but this one has the advantage of providing an overview. You can read chapters from people with experience from one-man-band outfits right up to major multinational game development houses. Read it and decide where you want to go from there.

In all fairness, I would advise working for someone else's gamedev company for a while first, so you can witness the production processes at first hand. Jumping in 'blind' is rarely a good long-term plan.

Regards,

--
Sean Timarco Baggaley

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Thanks, I bought this book. It's my table book. Alot of information - very useful information. I would like to work in a company, but it's like a unbreakable cycle - if u don't have experience in a game industry, nobody will hire you. But if I can't get into industry - I can't get experience :( Industry have changed dramatically. I decided to go other way. Be a self-taught. I want to accomplish couple of free projects. Learn how to work with team, how to work with deadlines, under pressure. I think it will be good experience. Good enough to build the team, learn and be ready for first small commercial project. Of cause nothing can compare with "live" experience. But I don't see another way to get into industry. I want to establish small company, start of with couple of small budget titles. According to the book I am in concept stage at this time. I work on my book and games is going to be based on it. I see 5 to 7 titles based on my IP. Which is about 4-7 years of develpment (I haven't done business plan yet, so I can't be sure).
In a future, I would like to see my company being a self-publisher. I have some concepts about it in my head, but it's to much for me at this moment to write a book, develop business paln, company concept, design doc, tech doc, etc.

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For an independent development company, you really need to look at things on a "project" rather than a "corporate" basis.

I've been doing this since the dark ages (started developing and publishing during the early days of the C-64), and I still run things as a one-man show when it comes to the business. My various projects, however, are a totally different story. My biggest project had 68 folks in the credits (and about another 10 that couldn't be included for political reasons), and my smallest had three people involved.

The key to survival - and/or success (and I tend to figure that survival IS success for the small developer) - is to keep your "business" overhead to the absolute minimum. When you're between products (or development budgets/funding) you can't afford all those "corporate" expenses. Keep your expenses focused on contracted talent you need to actually produce the product.

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yeah, but investors is not interested in "project", they need numbers. Business plan, overhead, chash flow how many people in the team. I can't go and tell them I am one-man-army. They have to be sure I have a solid team. And besides that team I can hire contracters.
May be when you finance your company yourself that "project" model would work.
But I am _far_ from the stage when I can self-finance my company.

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