"'Designer' is the most sought-after position. These are the people who invent games. At their core, designers are responsible for making things fun. Yet, getting there requires a lot of tedium.
'I don't play the game all day long while I'm at work," said Jen Ortiz, a designer on EA Mythic's Dark Age of Camelot. 'Seriously, I'm usually [too] buried in Excel sheets, product quality reports, poll results, team lead reports, emails and document writing of my own to even look at the game at work.'"
Dana Massey chases the myth of game development as paradise in "Working in Games."
Working in Games
Good article, kudos to Dana.
One thing that wasn't approached in this article are the rapidly expanding game industries in the Far East. In some countries game developers are paid a fraction of what they get in the West and typically work well over 60 hours a week. The same and worse apply to outsourcing companies where many western game developers elect to give their work out to.
I'm not just talking about the "sweatshop" factor coming to play here. Work ethic in Japan for example is much different than in the West. It's not uncommon for game developers to work over 90 hours a week, not get paid overtime, and love it.
Competition from the Far East is increasingly becoming a factor for market share, even in western markets. These trends could steadily drive salaries down and demands on human resources higher.