Designer Looking To Step It Up, Need Some Direction

23 Oct 2011 - 3:01pm
4 years ago
6 replies
1139 reads

Hi all. I am a graphic designer/ designer-still-in-training. I received my bachelor's degree in Graphic Design, minoring in multimedia design. In school I learned Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Dreamweaver, Flash, and Indesign, all of which I still use frequently. I also learned some 3D modeling and texturing through Maya. Since graduating I have done some freelancing, mainly web graphics and logos.


I didn't have much luck getting into a design firm like I hoped, and to tell you the truth, that didn't feel like the right direction for me anyway. Advertisements, logos, and print is interesting but it isn't what I really wanted to do with my life.


I'm a manager at a copy and print center now and am doing some design work there, mainly designing business card and invitation layouts. However, I'd like to move on to interactive design and games. I would like to create a game with a strong emphasis in the story as I also have been writing since I was very little and have always been told I have good story ideas.


Anyway, since I decided to head in this direction I've been trying to swallow all the information I can, updating my flash skills, seeing what platform to develop for, and so on. I learned that flash games can be ported to android pretty easily and I have been learning about this through I have also started creating my own game/story with Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash and After Effects, which is still in the very early stages.


What I'm looking for is any suggestions, references, direction from the veteran game developers/ interactive designers. There is so much information out there and it seems like so many different directions I could go with this, I feel a bit overwhelmed. Can anyone help me out? Thanks!




24 Oct 2011 - 11:24pm


25 Oct 2011 - 6:16am
Jack L. Moffett


I'm writing a series on DesignAday with information for those new to Interaction Design that you may find useful. You can see the posts I've made so far at



27 Oct 2011 - 3:16pm

Hey DMM,

what you are describing here is that you want to be a Game Designer, that's an entire class of its own. They deal with designing combat systems, achievement systems, reward systems, physics, game mechanics, and all sorts of stuff. Do you happen to know already what genres you would like to design for (puzzler, physics, RPG, arcade, etc.)? Platform wise it sounds like you want to go into mobile. Are you planning to do your own thing as Indy Developer or are you aiming at working in a company as Game Designer?

You probably want to check the website, and have a look if there is a chapter in your city or state. You can meet up with people and talk to them. The games industry is pretty chill as for what I can say, and everyone knows each other, so it's easy to meet and connect with people.

As for Game Designs, you probably want to find a way in building a rough prototype or vertical slice of what you are trying to design. It doesn't need to look good in the beginning, as long as it's clear how the game mechanics work, and how it feels.

I can't promise anything, but if you want I could ask a friend of mine who is a game designer. Maybe he can make some time to chat with you and give you some tips in where exactly you should channel your focus, because it's a pretty huge field, and the industry is still so young that there are no real definitions in what a game designer all needs to know and be able to do. All I can say they need to be highly skilled in tons of fields. I might also be able to introdeuce you to a friend from Fullsail. She might be able to introduce you with others. Would you like me to have a look around for you?

27 Oct 2011 - 3:20pm

Sorry, I forgot to point you to this link as well:

It's a bit difficult to find on this website :-) It gives you a high level understanding of the carreers within games. Gamasutra has also a career guide you might want to check out

28 Oct 2011 - 11:26pm

Thanks Jack, I'll take a look at that.

Bettina, I agree that game design would be a possible direction for what I am going for, however, when I started college game design was my plan and I have several connections in the video game company Raven and so I learned a lot through them. While working with video games would be very cool, I would really like to delve more into a new scope of design and gaming, one that focuses more on story telling and imagery than just playing through levels. I know this may be an out-there idea and is risky because it is more of a new concept but I'm hoping to achieve it in some way. 

I suppose the best way to continue forward though would be to go with more video game design studies as well as interactive design. I have signed up at igda and talked  on the forums as well, thought it is somewhat hard to describe what exactly I am going for. 

If you're friend would have some ideas for creating a partial game, partial interactive novel I would definitely be very grateful to talk to them. I am always up for talking with people and meeting new people to increase my knowledge. Thanks!

1 Nov 2011 - 10:45pm

Have a portfolio to review?



Syndicate content Get the feed