Designing the designer

RA Potanin, O Davies

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


This paper examines the selection criteria for design roles in the videogame industry and examines the profiles of students undertaking game design studies at NHTV in the expectation of working in the industry. A total of four analyses were conducted: job advertisements for design and production roles; an industry survey; MBTI profiling of a cross-section of IGAD students; and a survey of Design and Production students. In 2010 NHTV University of Applied Sciences initiated the Design and Production (D&P) specialization within its existing International Game Architecture Design (IGAD) bachelor degree. In preparing the specialization the authors analyzed a range of job advertisements for design and production staff in the videogame development industry and profiled its first intake of students according to gender, age, personality (Myers-Brigg (MBTI), Brainhex) and play preferences. Which students were successful in their first year of game studies? How did they compare to programmers and artists? In recent years, design positions in the game industry have increased in direct correlation with the focus on producing sequel titles/levels in established franchises. These titles require more design staff, namely game designers, level designers and narrative designers. The need to critically examine the role and personality of a designer in the game industry is vital to replicating them on a scale that surpasses previous production pipelines where one game designer envisioned the game on a macro level and a handful of level designers implemented gameplay on a micro level. NHTV initiated this first stage of research to gain insight into what the videogame industry needs in terms of design and production skills and personnel and what NHTV, in terms of students and curriculum, is providing. Ultimately the authors hope their research will innovate the game design production pipeline.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2011
EventDIGRA Conference "Think Design Play'; 2011 - Utrecht, The Netherlands
Duration: 15 Sept 201115 Sept 2011


ConferenceDIGRA Conference "Think Design Play'; 2011
CityUtrecht, The Netherlands


  • Education
  • Game designer
  • Personality
  • Production
  • Skills


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