VIDEOGAMES have become a prominent medium in the 21st century.
From the two-dimensional Pong to the photorealistic Final Fantasy, videogames have come leaps and bounds since its introduction in the early 70s. Today’s videogames have pushed past the profile of mindless entertainment to an artistic medium for storytelling.
Many have been captivated by the emotional investment from the narrative of videogames such as The Walking Dead by Telltale Games and The Last of Us by Naughty Dogs which have both bagged several nominations and awards.
Videogames, like Niantic Inc’s Pokemon Go, have become a cultural phenomenon around the world. It broke past the traditional mindset of having players be stationary by incorporating real-time action to the gameplay using augmented reality.
Fun aside, videogames have a symbiotic relationship with other fields of work too. Medical centres are developing virtual reality simulation games to train surgeons for robotic surgery.
NASA’s Langley Center is developing technology that sends physiological signals as input for the game. This could very well revolutionize the industry for physical interactivity which could be then applied in physical therapy, biofeedback equipment and stamina athletic training.
Videogames have also been applied in the academic field. Websites, like BrainPOP, use interactivity of videogames to help children learn hundreds of topics. Schools and universities have been experimenting with the addition of interactive games to the curriculum, due to the fact that educational videogames have shown signs of improving information retention, cognitive skills and critical thinking.
Along with the growing industry, new jobs have been generated. Newly formed roles such as level designer, 3D lead artist and beta tester have been born, with the average salary of video game designer ranging from USD 45,320 to USD 129,700 per year – a lucrative career path.
In the past few decades, we have witnessed the birth and growth of a multi-billion dollar industry. A statistical analysis from the Global Games Market Report found that the annual revenue generated from videogames worldwide is a total of USD 99.6 billion in 2016, 8.5% more than the revenue of 2015.
What more, this rapidly growing industry is showing no signs of stopping anytime soon.
Game designer, lead publisher and creator of the hit videogame series, Metal Gear Hideo Kojima himself is of a net worth of US$30 million.
The successful indie game Flappy Bird created by fresh graduate, Dong Ngyuen, while interning in a videogame company reportedly garnered USD$50,000 a day in 2014 for a game he took only two to three days to make.
Videogame companies have branched out in the South East Asian market by opening studios like Square Enix’s Smileworks in Indonesia and Ubisoft Singapore, which has collaborated in the creation of their AAA games, such as Assassin’s Creed. The company is currently at a net worth of an approximation of US$600 million.
Incidentally, there aren’t many institutions that offer formal education options in the videogame field. Limkokwing University of Creative Technology is one of those institutions which educates and groom talent for the future of this lucrative field.
The videogame industry requires individuals who are capable of critical and analytical thinking with a creative mindset, competence in coding and a flair for design. Limkokwing helps to nurture these skills in students through its structured courses that involve practical opportunities for a more hands-on learning opportunity.
The Faculty of Multimedia Creativity houses many courses that can groom students to become a future contributor of the gaming industry.
Students can study Game Technology where they learn how to design and develop their very own gaming engine and utilise preexisting ones to their full potential, or Games Art Development which teaches you the artistic nuances needed in level design and concept art, and not forgetting the award winning course in Animation to master the art of character drawing, development and animated movements.
Many of Limkokwing’s alumni have made imprints of their talents in the industry. Kendrick See, from Malaysia, works as a concept artist for the critically acclaimed, Microsoft’s Gears of War 4, Bethesda’s The Elder Scrolls: Legend and Bandai Namco’s Tales of Berseria.
Xeniya Chernikova, from Kazakhstan, is an animator for Mirayi Animation Studio in Malaysia where their biggest clients hail from Korea. Shae Lyn, a Malaysian Compositor at Base FX, had a hand in Hollywood blockbuster films like Great Wall and the Life of Pi and the amazing Chronicles of Narnia series.
Although the industry has been prevalent in the last four decades, it can still be regarded as being in its infancy stage due to the high demand for workers with precise skillsets and the need of a steady pipeline of qualified talents for the job.
to enroll for a Bachelor of Games Art Development (Hons), Bachelors of Games Design (Hons) and Bachelors of Games Technology (Hons) and be a part of the gaming revolution.
- This article is brought to you by Limkokwing.