What Game Makers Really Earn

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What Game Makers Really Earn

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How much can you make in the videogame industry? Here's a handy graphic that lets you know.

Plenty of people want to make videogames for a living, but how much you can make doing that is never really brought up. Until now that is, thanks to an infographic about average salaries for various positions in the industry, courtesy of Maxim of all places.

The figures quoted are apparently taken directly from the people themselves via Game Developer Research, and the descriptions also offer up a few tidbits of trivia, like of all the jobs in game development, women are most often producers.

The infographic itself is too big to post, but you can see it in all its splendor here.

Source: via Game Culture

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I still have one question.

What is the equivalent of picking up a sledgehammer and beating Donkey Kong to death in the Gaming Market?

There's gotta be one if you want to compare it to Mario!

Got a question though it might be a stupid one, where are the writers in this chart?

Lost In The Void:
Got a question though it might be a stupid one, where are the writers in this chart?

They do seem to be missing...

But, its a fair amount of cash if you can reach it

Those are some pretty generous figures. Definitely in the higher tiers of the pay scales for those jobs, that is a fact. Entry level is significantly lower, and the actual averages are also a good deal lower, before you factor in bonuses and profit sharing. At least in the companies I've seen.

Lost In The Void:
Got a question though it might be a stupid one, where are the writers in this chart?

GAMES HAVE WRITERS!?

Ok, ok, bad joke, I get it. I just couldn't resist.

Lost In The Void:
Got a question though it might be a stupid one, where are the writers in this chart?

Probably somewhere near the janitor and the cleaning staff (if some of the stories in recent games are anything to go by)

Lost In The Void:
Got a question though it might be a stupid one, where are the writers in this chart?

Either it's included under Game Designers ("...with a creative background in writing...") or it's just not included.

Certainly is interesting information, anyway.

Yay for composers... $80,000/yr average is definitely okay for me. I'll take it! Heck... I'll work on the cheap... $79,000. :)

70K for an artist position, That's comforting.

uppitycracker:
Those are some pretty generous figures. Definitely in the higher tiers of the pay scales for those jobs, that is a fact. Entry level is significantly lower, and the actual averages are also a good deal lower, before you factor in bonuses and profit sharing. At least in the companies I've seen.

Hmm...intersting, I did think the numbers on chart were a bit too high.

What's the salary working for the Escapist?

These figures seem completely inaccurate from others I've seen. Mainly because they taken as an average and therefore will be inflated through the high wages earned by a few at the biggest companies. Most games developers won't earn this kind of money...

Onyx Oblivion:
What's the salary working for the Escapist?

Cookies, and the joy of being given cookies.

Not donuts, nor Waffles though. Unless you beg for a bonus.

Lost In The Void:
Got a question though it might be a stupid one, where are the writers in this chart?

I imagine that people like voice actors and writers often work on contract rather than salary. Those people on salary actually have to put in the hours and work for a living. (j/k)

Lost In The Void:
Got a question though it might be a stupid one, where are the writers in this chart?

Under Game Designers.

Dang, thats a lot of money, I'm guessing its not an easy industry to get in to, and not to stable ether considering Heavenly Sword only broke even.

D_987:
These figures seem completely inaccurate from others I've seen. Mainly because they taken as an average and therefore will be inflated through the high wages earned by a few at the biggest companies. Most games developers won't earn this kind of money...

That's what I thought, they seem to be taking these statistics from Bioware and Square Enix and other such companies.

so how much would I make if I was CEO/President of a game studio (maybe be a part time director of the game as well)

So my animation degree will be worth about $70,000? Awesome.

ForgottenPr0digy:
so how much would I make if I was CEO/President of a game studio (maybe be a part time director of the game as well)

It would depend massively on the size of the company you're working for (or in this case running), as is the case in all businesses...

drisky:

That's what I thought, they seem to be taking these statistics from Bioware and Square Enix and other such companies.

True, but at the same time there are a large number of jobs within these areas - for example, in the "game designers" section the role "Lead Designer" is mentioned, but that still leaves little mention of "Level designers", "Writers". All of which would have different wages.

Oh God, dollars.
Is $67000 a year a lot?

WOAH!

$90,000, that's about £60,000

Glad I want to be a games programmer

reg42:
Oh God, dollars.
Is $67000 a year a lot?

That's a lot to me at least... I'm 22 and living on my own with my fiancee and the most I've ever made is about $15k. Nothing but dead end jobs or military service around here...

No surprise. The fragging MARKETERS get the lion's share.
You got to have someone working on new ways to fool customers into buying your generic rubberstamp title...

Ok ok...that's not entirely fair, but the pay scale alone should show you where the REAL focus in the industry lies, and it isn't with the people who actually MAKE the games.

Glad to see Composer and Programmer up there though, even if they make considerably less than the spinsters and mouths/suits.

90K a year? Yes please! :D

So that's how Gabe affords all that food! Sorry, I couldn't resist a Gabe Newel is fat joke when a common question is how does he afford all that food.

These numbers seem high. Maybe they're true, and I hope they're true, but I hope these figures are medians or approximate modes, not means that could be dramatically altered by a few high-paying companies, and/or neglecting entry-level workers.

Awesome the job I'm working towards now makes 70,000. Sounds good to me (if I can make it still have to get through art school)

Thats actually a lot more than I thought they made. Freaking awesome.

That's pretty good. Even the bottom rung of the steady workers make nice money.

Considering the source, that being Maxim, I wouldnt buy those figures for anything.

Looks like my future management degree will come in handy afterall.... $_$

Few things I'd like to know:
- How many companies is this the average of?
- Which companies is this averaged across?

thank goodness im going for RTIS. hopefuly i can get somewhere from going to digipen...

Yea, that's why I wanna focus on film industry animation; Paid more and treated better than you are in the games industry. I interned at a motion capture place during college that did the animation for Prey and it was pretty mind numbing after a while of fixing animation.

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