I've been wondering about this for a while. In most major game companies, how do the people that design game concepts (how much recoil will this gun have? What should we name this city? Should we add X gameplay element? etc.) get those positions?
My plan for a while was to become a programmer and work my way up to game designer from there. I suppose that was probably the case years ago when teams were smaller, and in some indie studios, where the same is true, but what about now? Do people get game designer jobs fresh out of college? And if they do, would a programmer have any chance of obtaining the position of game designer?