Game Designer & Game Programmer

Game designers and game programmers are both playing the most important roles in the production to release every new games. Even though they have many similar academic requirements, their specific roles, in reality, are not the same. This article below will help you understand more clearly “What are the differences between Game designers and Game programmers.”

Comparison 1. What is a Video Game Designer?

Game designers are the professionals who produce ideas and decide how a game should function and look. Depending on the employer, designers may be further divided into many smaller groups, which work on only one particular aspect of the game, to complete highly specific tasks much faster

2. What is a Video Game Developer?

But, can game designers make a whole new game by themselves? The answer is no, because we still need someone that can turn vision into reality. And that's when game programmers can play their role, to convert the ideas and objectives of the design team into the actual game, by producing and taking care of all the computer codes to make sure that the game can work smoothly as intended.

3. The table below will help you know what they have in common and what makes them different from each other:

Job Title Educational Requirements Median Salary* (2016) Job Outlook* (2014-2024)
Game Designer Bachelor's Degree $102,280 for Software Developers 17% for Software Developers
Game Programmer Bachelor's Degree $79,840 for Computer Programmers -8% for Computer Programmers
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics      

4. Job Responsibilities Comparison

Game Designer

  • To become such great designer, you might need:
  • Identify popular gaming trends.
  • Work with other game designers to refine ideas for new games.
  • Determine the intended audience for their game design.
  • Produce a game design plan.
  • Consider alterations that can improve existing games.

Game Programmer

  • But on the other hand, what you need to do when you are a game programmer are:
  • Review game design plans.
  • Test game codes to make sure the game operates properly.
  • Make corrections to the code to fix errors.
  • Meet with software developers to discuss their progress.
  • Alter existing game codes to improve the game's features.

Conclusion       If you choose Game Development as your career, you may need to put your interest in using your creative design talents as an industrial designer to develop new products.

But when you want to go on a Game Programming path, you may want to consider working as a multimedia artist or animator because you can pursue a career that involves creating the background and characters that people see when they play video games.