Top 14 Video Game Jobs
Updated July 31, 2023
The gaming industry has become a multi-billion dollar entity within the entertainment industry and many teenagers and adults alike consider themselves major gaming fans. Knowing the types of video game jobs available and what each position does can help you find a rewarding career in the gaming industry. In this article, we discuss the different types of video game jobs, including the national average salary and primary duties of each job.
Related: Guide: Using Indeed.com Job Search
What careers are in the gaming industry?
Knowing the different types of jobs you can do within the video game industry can help you find a career you are passionate about and enjoy. Here are 14 careers in the video game industry:
National average salary: $11.83 per hour
Primary duties: Help customers find and purchase the products they are interested in, is knowledgeable about different types of gaming systems and games and uses this knowledge to answer customer questions and make game or system recommendations, assists customers throughout the entire purchasing process and ensures a positive customer experience. Retail sales associates also encourage repeat business by making sure customers are aware of upcoming promotional offers and video game releases.
2. Game tester
National average salary: $15.52 per hour
Primary duties: Provide quality assurance (QA) for video game production companies during the development phase by playing video games prior to release to test for proper functioning, identify bugs or problems, make sure instructions and documentation is clear, rate the overall gaming experience and report their findings back to the game developers and designers to make sure the game works flawlessly when it is released to the market.
National average salary: $15.55 per hour
Primary duties: Assist customers who experience technical problems and issues while playing video games. Technical support specialists may work for the companies that produce games, companies that produce gaming systems or both and answer questions to provide technical support through online chat, email and phone calls.
National average salary: $17.01 per hour
Primary duties: Artists create 2D and 3D images of characters, settings, vehicles, props and objects that the animator will use to create graphics in the video game. Artists use traditional hand sketching during the beginning phases of design and then provide these images to animators to create the matching computer graphics. Artists may also design images for packaging and marketing materials that make video games stand out to consumers.
National average salary: $18.21 per hour
Primary duties: Animators use the images created by artists and specialized software to create the graphics and images that make a video game designer's ideas, characters, settings, props and special effects visually come to life. Animators focus on creating realistic, life-like characters and settings that will fully immerse their audience in the game.
National average salary: $21.08 per hour
Primary duties: Use specialized computer and electrical equipment that allow them to make soundtracks and control audio throughout a video game. Audio engineers record background music, create sound effects and create the voices of each character. They may use voice-over recordings and music soundtracks to edit and mix unique soundtracks that help immerse the player into the game and move them through the game's story.
National average salary: $23.74 per hour
Primary duties: Writers can find work in a variety of ways within the gaming industry. They can write video game storyline scripts, create dialogue for game characters, develop documentation and instructions (such as for in-game commands and instruction pamphlets) and write marketing materials to promote game sales.
National average salary: $49,805 per year
Primary duties: The producer is the project manager overseeing the entire production process of a video game. Producers work alongside everyone else working on the development and release phase of the video game to manage tasks, schedules, budgets and deadlines. The responsibilities of a producer may vary based on their level of expertise and the studio they are working for.
National average salary: $59,594 per year
Primary duties: A sales representative works with the distributor, publisher or studio of a video game to sell games, systems or other products and accessories to retailers.
National average salary: $61,136 per year
Primary duties: A marketing manager creates, develops and executes a brand strategy to market the game through online platforms (such as social media, paid marketing campaigns and website promotion) and traditional advertising means (such as print advertising and promotional products).
National average salary: $62,930 per year
Primary duties: A video game designer designs and storyboards new features and collaborates with the development team to create new video games. Video game designers come up with the games' concepts, characters, settings, storyline and gameplay and work alongside the game's development team to bring their ideas to life.
Depending on their experience and position, they may also write the code and act as the project manager for the development of the game.
National average salary: $63,617 per year
Primary duties: A market research analyst studies the gaming industry market through consumer research, market analysis and competitor analysis to identify key industry trends and work with the marketing manager to create a marketing campaign that leads to the success of a game.
National average salary: $72,135 per year
Primary duties: A programmer uses computer coding to create the programs that computers, smartphones, tablets and video game systems will read to run the game and ensure every aspect of the game is playable. This includes ensuring that the characters, settings and objects interact and function as they are supposed to and using artificial intelligence to make non-playable characters as realistic as possible.
National average salary: $92,176 per year
Primary duties: A develop oversees a team created to plan, design and produce video games to be played on computers, smartphones, tablets and video game systems. Developers create the visual content and write the code that will be implemented in the game's features and functionality.
Frequently asked questions
Where are video game jobs located?
There are video game jobs located in every state, especially in the areas of marketing, sales and retail. Research roles in your area to determine if you can pursue them.
Are there entry-level video game jobs?
Yes, while some video game jobs require degrees and advanced skills, others are entry-level roles. For example, many retail and marketing jobs with video games are entry-level. Advancement in retail may not require a degree, though advancement in marketing does.
Can you play video games as a job?
Video game testers and e-sports athletes play video games as part of their roles. Other roles may also play games before their release so they can promote them effectively. For example, a sales associate may play a game so they can discuss specifics with customers and improve the likelihood they make a sale. Artists may also play the game to ensure the art performs correctly within the bounds of the game system.
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