BA (Hons) Video Game Design and Production graduate Arthur Fostier is a Gameplay Designer at Pixel Toys, a games studio in Leamington Spa that focuses on mobile and VR titles.
Why did you choose to study Video Game Design and Production and how did it help you prepare for your career?
When I started looking into games as something more than just a passion and realised I could pursue it as a career, I thought of what I love so much about in the games I play, and what my skill set was most suited for in relation to the games development areas.
Having chosen the Design and Production course, I was constantly challenged to put my abilities in practice and learn new technical aspects of Game Design, with relevant professional practices which helped me set foot in the industry within my first year of study.
Can you tell us about your current role or any projects that you’re involved in?
I’m currently working on a mobile strategy title entitled “Realm War” where I am primarily responsible for balancing the different units in the game. This involves a deep understanding of all kinds of interactions and mechanics of each unit, as well as being informed in regards to how users are playing the game.
I am also involved in designing new units and gameplay content for upcoming releases in the title.
What do you enjoy most about working about your role at Pixel Toys?
Working at Pixel Toys has been great for me both professionally and personally, as I have been able to meet and work with people who have the same admiration for game development and other similar interests. Being exposed to an environment with so many talented professionals really inspires me to improve myself as a designer, and the possibility of receiving constant feedback and feedforward is the most rewarding part of my role, as I always have something new to pursue.
What advice would you give to a student thinking about joining BA (Hons) Video Game Design and Production?
This course is great if you find problem-solving an exciting activity and you strive to find creative solutions, turning ideas into playable experiences. The well-structured and industry-based content provided me with great insight to how professionals really work in studios, and I had the chance to create a solid portfolio along the way.
Personally, I joined the course already certain I would want to be a Games Designer, but throughout the modules there is a great deal of flexibility and opportunities for students to specialise in either Design of Production. I have certainly found the Production aspect immensely useful to my role as Designer at Pixel Toys, as I had a better understanding of how to realistically go through the many steps of content development when I first joined the studio.
What advice would you give to a student looking to get into the video game industry?
- First, and most importantly in my opinion, be passionate about what you do as it will be conveyed in your portfolio work and how you come across as a person. Being invested in the games you are working on will go a long way inside studios as well, making it easy for you to come up with ideas which will inspire your team.
- Make sure to work to your strengths and focus on the kind of games you enjoy most when applying for jobs or in interviews. You will be much more likely to be knowledgeable and suited to that role if you have done some research beforehand on the company and the types of products they develop.
- Be interested. If Games Development is really what you want to focus on, keep informing yourself on the current industry trends, recent releases, and new technology around. This will eventually pay off when you realise you have a considerable edge in terms of experience when engaging in job applications or interviews.