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vladimirsan

Game programmer vs Game Designer??

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When I was a little boy I dreamed about becoming a game programmer, I thought that programmers made EVERYTHING in a game. Of course now I know that that isn’t how things work in the industry. I am currently getting a Computer Science Degree but I have some questions of the industry. As a game programmer…do you have opinion of anything related to game design? or you just sit and code what the designer created?? If as a programmer you don’t have the chance of contribute in the overall design of a game. Is it possible to work both on the design AND in the programming of a game. Finally…even than I love programming…is it possible to “jump” from game programming to game design? I don’t know, I just want to hear your thoughts.

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Quote:
Original post by vladimirsanAs a game programmer…do you have opinion of anything related to game design?


Depending on the size of the project, yes. If it's a smaller project (10~20 people), normally everybody can give feedback. The game designers don't always think in code, and when you code a feature, you see the flaws in the design. "What if we do that then that, that breaks the rule?"

Programmers are always communicating with designers. Unless that designer is very clear on his features, thought of all scenarios, and (extra points for him) has programming background.

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Train To Game

Look at this for clarification. N.B the course itself will NOT help you into the industry!

Otherwise, they do exactly as they say on the tin

"Game Designer" Designs Games, Level Design etc. Not much programming there

"Game Developer " Develops games, Works on the actual Engine Code, Servers, etc.

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Vlad wrote:
>As a game programmer…do you have opinion of anything related to game design? or you just sit and code what the designer created??

Depends on team size, team dynamics, team experience, and team quality. Also depends on the specific thing you are talking about.
If you think it ought to be Button A instead of Button B, then you'll probably need to explain why, and obtain team consensus. You shouldn't just program it to be Button A.
But if the designer didn't specify how AI should be structured, then you can design the AI.

>If as a programmer you don’t have the chance of contribute in the overall design of a game. Is it possible to work both on the design AND in the programming of a game.

Your hypothetical question is an oxymoron. If you could work on both the design and the programming, then you would have the chance of contributing to the design.
So ignoring the question the way you worded it, it is indeed possible to be both the designer and the programmer. Depends on team size, and team experience.

> …is it possible to “jump” from game programming to game design?

Firstly, anything is possible.
Secondly, yes. Many programmers have become game designers. They don't necessarily stop programming after making the jump.
Game design is an activity primarily needed during pre-production. Then (depending on team composition and on the project and the production methodology) design might become a part-time job during production, and nonexistent during post-production.

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