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GeneralJist

Platform Experience Vs. Another Platform Experience? In Job Searching?

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Hello,

 

My question is regarding how important is platform type in the industry itself?

PC VS.Mobile VS. console VS. Web, etc.?

 

OFC, it's better to get experience in your desired and target platform, that your most experienced in, but how does say, a PC developer or publisher view a candidate with say mobile experience and Vice versa?

 

I'm involved in PC, am wondering if I should even bother applying to other types?

 

Then again, my experience is more on the production, and business end, so management & people skills are always transferable.

 

I used to live in cA, where there are tons of mobile developers, and I just never felt quite right applying to them, since I don't have any experience in the mobile field.

Curious to see how people view this?

 

Their totally different markets, are they treated as such, or do they overlap a lot?

 

Do they say a completed game is a completed game, no matter the platform? or are they more nit-picky? (I'd think they'd be more picky..., contingent on completed scope?)

 

And with cross platform

Edited by GeneralJist

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It depends. If you apply to a company where the engineers have a similar background to yours and have adapted their background to the new field,
and you seem like a good fit with the team, they'll likely figure you can adapt the same way they did. But if their engineers see your back-
ground as too far afield from what the company does, they'll recommend hiring someone else. Another factor is whether or not you've played
games on the company's platform and have thought a lot about the needs of the platform and the company's products as relating to your back-
ground. If you're unfamiliar with the company's products, business model, and platform, they'll see that as a negative.

EDIT - I see (after the fact) that you're mostly a production person as opposed to a programmer? You need to do a lot of reading and playing
so you can at least be as informed as possible about the target market and processes used by any potential employer. Edited by Tom Sloper

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In terms of hiring, in my experience, the platform experience is not a necessity. In broad strokes, games are games are games.

That said, there are specifics to different markets (_not_ platforms, but _markets_) that affect how games are designed, distributed, played, and monetized. e.g., if you have experience with PC free-to-play games, you'll probably find your skillset is very transferable to mobile free-to-play games.

"Production" is a little weird because it can mean such different things at different companies. At companies where Producers take on the role of Ownership, knowing the market for your game matters a lot, since you'll be in charge of helping to define the deliverables necessary to succeed in that market. At companies where Producers take on the role of Managers, knowing the technology and tools helps in communicating with the rest of the team, but your people skills can probably make up for lack of technology experience. In companies where Producers are basically just JIRA monkies, you basically just need to be able to fog a mirror and you'll be a suitable candidate (but do you want to work there?).

The things that help getting hired are a little more abstract, as in any other industry. As Tom alluded to, have you played games that the company has made? Are you interested in the company or their products? Are you interested in their target markets? Do you bring any new insight or skills to the table that they currently might be lacking? etc.

My usual advice for this stuff is to _just apply_. It doesn't hurt. At worst, you don't get the job. Not getting the job is only an assured outcome if you never apply in the first place.

Don't take too much stock in the requirements on job postings (e.g., just because a job posting says that you "must" have shipped 3+ mobile titles, don't assume that you have to actually have done that to get the job). They're mostly wish lists and highly negotiable, at any job in any industry, and are often poor reflections of what the company is actually looking for.

The best advice I can possibly give for getting a job though is to get a recommendation from the inside. When there are 300 resumes on a hiring manager's desk (not unheard of in production or QA; they're considered easy jobs to use to break into the industry and get a _lot_ of chaff), the only _sure_ way to actually get yours near the top of the stack is for someone else in the company to give said manager your name.

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Well, ya, referrals are the golden ticket of course, think internal referrals make up like 80% of new hires  in most industries, if I'm remembering the stat right...

 

Anyways,

When applying, well ya, It never hurts to apply and throw your hat in the ring, but when it's recommended people customize their resume and Ap for each job they apply for, it can get overwhelming. (From the applicant side, it seems like a ridiculous thing to ask for, but from the employer side, it's a necessity)

 

Job postings are a picture of the best ideal candidate HR+ the hiring manager can possibly dream up, from what I've been told.

 

On the other hand, when I'm recruiting, nothing annoys me more, when an ap comes in that is clearly not qualified, or clearly didn't read all the requirements of the job.

 

I guess I'm asking as to how much markets overlap. And if I should bother applying to mobile developers, if I really have no interest or experience, in such, for the purpose of trying to get in, and since there are like 50 mobile / web developers for every 1 PC developer in the bay area (which is where I'm originally from).

 

The question could be refined to how much mobility is there in the industry between companies in separate markets?

And is it even worth the extra trouble to get into a market that is not your wheelhouse, with the sole purpose of just braking in, and then transferring to your desired market?

 

Edited by GeneralJist

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1. I guess I'm asking as to how much markets overlap. And if I should bother applying to mobile developers, if I really have no interest or experience, in such, for the purpose of trying to get in, and since there are like 50 mobile / web developers for every 1 PC developer in the bay area (which is where I'm originally from).
2. The question could be refined to how much mobility is there in the industry between companies in separate markets?
3. And is it even worth the extra trouble to get into a market that is not your wheelhouse, with the sole purpose of just braking in, and then transferring to your desired market?


1. The mobile market is very different from the PC games market - depending on what kind of stuff you did in PC. Mobile is a little like Facebook games but very different from packaged games. You need to do reading on the mobile market. Do you subscribe to GamesIndustry.biz? Very worthwhile. Also see Gamasutra and Kotaku.
2. Lots. But it depends on the individual and the company and the position...
3. That's up to you to decide. From your description, you'll get a lot more mobility and marketability if you work in the mobile marketplace. Mobile is probably the future of games - especially AR.

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Sigh,

Ya, mobile is the future of casual gaming, IDK about the future of gaming as a whole...

I honestly not a mobile gamer, it just seems so shallow tome....

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Ya, mobile is the future of casual gaming, IDK about the future of gaming as a whole...


Not just casual. There's a lot of talk about consoles and PCs dying out. It won't happen right away,
but still. You wanted to know where to position yourself in the marketplace...

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Yes, they die out relative to market share. 

Mostly that is because there are new markets, only slightly because some people are abandoning the old markets.

 

There is a market for PC games, and there will be a market as long as PC's exist.  There is a market for games played on the front room television, and there will continue to be as long as people have the TV as the nicest screen in the home set up in a comfortable environment.  There is a market for games played on phones and mobile devices, and there will continue to be as long as people carry these convenient little devices around.  Etc.

 

When people started buying fancier and fancier games on their game consoles attached to a television it did draw away some people from PC games, and the PC games market shrunk slightly, but the PC market dropped more rapidly as a percent because a huge number of people joined or play on both.  As people picked up mobile devices some people left those other markets, but most remained; mobile dominated because everyone picked up mobile IN ADDITION TO their other markets.

 

 

There are a bunch of stats put out by many different groups.  Most of those I've seen say that currently about 50% of all homes have a console set up attached to the television. Of those homes, about 80% have more than one modern console.  

 

Read differently: The PS4 and XBoxOne are constantly shown as battling at around a 60/40 ratio of install base.  But in people's homes they are not a PS4 home or an XBoxOne home. 80% of homes with game consoles have BOTH. The market has expanded to include both of them, it is not exclusive.  Games are still a luxury good and some people won't have them, but if people can afford games they can generally afford multiple.

 

PC games and consoles and mobile phones have an incredibly high overlap.  As a percentage of all game playing each one individually is dropping, but that's because people are playing MANY OF THEM, they are not using one at the exclusion of all others.  People can play on PC and play on console and play on mobile.

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