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Breaking Into Games With Jagex
Jagex Artwork from Runescape, shown as part of an exhibition at Brains Eden 2013
Published: 14th March 2014.
Career opportunities abound in the booming video games industry but competition is fierce and youngsters who aspire to these exciting jobs need to pack their physical and on-line portfolios with game designs and ideas, tailored for each job opportunity, according to Jagex, the UK’s largest independent developer and publisher of online games.
Speaking ahead of the Creative Front Futures event, on Wednesday, 26 March in Cambridge, where she will be discussing career paths in the industry, Sue Stather, Jagex Games Studio’s Graduate Recruitment Specialist, said: “The video games industry pumps over £2 billion into the UK economy each year, outstripping the value of the entire UK music market*. For talented young creatives considering careers in gaming, a good CV and covering letter is not enough. They’ll also need an inspiring portfolio, bursting with games examples, that they can show at interview and that their potential employer can also access via the internet. There are a multitude of ways this can be achieved using social platforms such as LinkedIn and YouTube, to name but a few, and all serious candidates for jobs in our industry should have a creative presence online.”
Creative Front Futures is a unique new event designed to bring together creative businesses with young people looking to carve exciting career paths in the industry, in a showcase of extraordinary and diverse creativity and innovation. Creative Front Cambridgeshire is Anglia Ruskin University’s creative industries network which helps to connect talent with the diverse range of creative businesses here. This event is just one of the ways that Anglia Ruskin University with the help of VIVID (Value Increased by Visual Design), funded under the European Interreg IV A Programme “2 Mers Seas Zeeën”, is supporting its students and graduates find work in the region’s dynamic creative sector.
TRANSFORMERS UNIVERSE from Jagex
Sue added: “A games portfolio needs to reflect the individual’s passion for gaming, and show examples of any collaborative gaming projects that they have been involved with. This may include examples of characters that they have designed for games, or the story behind the game that they want to build.
“Job applicants should always try to tailor their application for the position that they’re interested in, to demonstrate understanding and enthusiasm for the company and opportunity.”
The use of social media in recruitment has gained momentum in recent years and many employers now utilise the internet to check candidates’ career histories and also assess their personal profiles. European research shows that up to 30 percent** of companies are now using social media as part of their recruitment process.
Sue continued: “As well as an online creative portfolio, it is important for young creatives looking to break into our industry to have a strong profile on LinkedIn and a social media presence. Candidates can also use social media networks to find out more about the companies they’re interested in joining. This will help to impress their interviewers - they can never do too much research.”
While enjoying their years at college or university, Sue urges students to harness their time effectively so that they have a full portfolio and online presence as they first enter the job market. She added: “Youngsters should make the most of their student experience by getting involved with as many game jams and other opportunities to be creative and collaborative as possible. Brains Eden, run by Creative Front and Anglia Ruskin in July, is a prime example of where you gain great experience, make your own games and share them with fellow gamers and industry mentors, who can provide feedback and help you make improvements. It is also great practice for later on in your career.”
Sue will be holding two ’Hire Me’ sessions at the Creative Front Futures event, on Wednesday 26th March 2014 at 10:20am and 11:40am. During these, she will discuss the different avenues for developing a career across a number of disciplines with the award winning company, provide an insight into what it’s like to work in a large studio and be part of the Jagex team, while also quashing any fears attendees may have about interviews.
Sue concluded: “Working for a company that has such a global reach and such an esteemed following is fantastic. Being able to meet students who have a promising future ahead of them and help open the doors to the limitless opportunities that working with Jagex offers is a real privilege. We want to share this with the next generation who want to work in our industry.
“At Jagex we look for passionate people. Those who are the best in their field, are creative, want to be part of a successful team, are skilled in their particular craft, incredibly hard working and totally committed to making really amazing games. If that’s you then come along and see us at Creative Front Futures.”
Wayne Hemingway, one of Britain’s most acclaimed designers, will be guest of honour at Creative Front Futures and will join Sue and a number of acclaimed Cambridge creative aficionados, including Redback Design, Wysing Arts Centre, and Sables and Hawkes, as well as the European Press Agency, to share their inspiration.
Creative Front Futures is free to attend and will take place from 9am to 5pm on 26 March at Cambridge Junction, CB1 7GX. To register for a delegate place at Creative Front Futures, please visit www.creativefront.org.
Follow Creative Front Futures on Twitter at @creativefront; on
Facebook www.facebook.com/CreativeFront and on Instagram @creativefront.