The Career Clusters in a game studio

The Career Clusters in a game studio
It takes more than coders and designers to make a game – learn about the different Career Clusters you might find in this Workplace Spotlight.

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The digital games industry is massive globally, worth more than $240 billion in 2020 and growing each year. And game studios are the places where our favourite video games are created. They are a place where a variety of creative and technical professionals come together to design, draw, record, develop, code, and test games before releasing them to the public.

Here are some common things you can expect to find at game studios:

  1. They’re very tech-oriented – as you might expect, you’ll be working with a lot of the latest and greatest technology, both software and hardware.
  2. Time management is key – lots of games are developed on strict timelines, and launching on time is always important.
  3. You won’t be working alone – unless you’re a freelance developer, chances are you’ll be working with a large team of people to deliver great quality games.

Key Outcome

Produce high quality and entertaining content

The main focus of game studios is to create video games, all the way from initial ideation to product launch. There are many different styles, genres, and formats of games for different interests.

Key Tasks

  • Develop initial concepts and ideas
  • Create digital assets, including art, video, and sound
  • Develop code and continually test and bugfix
  • Manage budgets and timelines
  • Prepare marketing materials for launch
  • Monitor feedback and quality of product post-launch


You can find game studios in the professional, scientific and technical services, and arts and recreation industries

Game studios are generally found in the professional, scientific and technical services, and arts and recreation industries. Size can vary from huge, multi-national studios with offices around the world, to small indie studios with just a handful of employees.

Work Environment

You can expect regular hours and both on-site and remote work

Regular work hours  |  Work on-site and remote  |  Jobs more common in metro areas  |  Strong job growth

Game studios are generally open regular working hours from 9 to 5, and most workers work regular hours. Some overtime might be necessary to ensure products meet deadlines close to launch. Some roles, such as quality assurance and customer service, can work irregular hours to provide 24/7 service and account for players in different time zones.

Because a lot of work is done using computers and technology, there is ample opportunity for roles with flexible working arrangements, including remote work and working from home.

Most game studios are based in metropolitan areas, but as the industry grows some smaller studios may branch out into regional areas as well – plus freelance developers can work from almost anywhere in the world, as long as they have the technology.

The Career Clusters you’ll find in a game studio

People from all Clusters are needed for a game studio to run effectively, but the most common Clusters you’ll find are Innovators and Linkers. As in any role, you might find yourself performing tasks across multiple Clusters.


The Makers are the people responsible for quality testing and providing feedback on games before they’re released to the public. They also need people to install and maintain digital and physical storage and IT systems, and ensure player data and information is kept secure.

  • Quality Testers
  • IT/Systems Analysts

The Linkers in game studios are responsible for creating marketing materials and campaigns to advertise both upcoming and recently released games to the public. They might also answer questions and complaints from players, as well as moderate community forums and engage with players through social media sites (such as Twitch).

  • Marketing Managers
  • Customer Service Officers
  • Community Managers

Coordinators are the people responsible for managing a game’s timeline and budget, as well as managing teams and delegating tasks. They also need people to take care of general office administration tasks, as well as overseeing the hiring process for new workers.

  • Game Producers
  • HR Managers
  • Office Administrators

Informers in game studios might conduct market research into consumer trends and demand. They may also need people to advise on legal matters such as copyright and intellectual property, and people who can translate games into multiple languages for an international audience.

  • Market Researchers
  • IP Lawyers
  • Translators

Innovators are the most common workers in a game studio, consisting of the people who develop initial concepts and ideas, write code and software, create art, user interface, and sound assets, and patch bugs and provide continual support and updates for games post-launch. They also need people to design branding and promotional materials.

  • Game Developers
  • Audio Engineers
  • Environment and Model Artists
  • Animators
  • Graphic Designers

Guardians aren’t particularly common in game studios, but some larger studios employ people to manage the wellbeing of workers, ensuring they don’t burn out from overtime and deadline pressure. Some studios also focus on creating apps and games to support mental wellness and physical fitness. There is also a growing focus on diversity and inclusion, both in the workplace and represented in the finished product.

  • Wellbeing Coordinators
  • Diversity and Inclusion Officers

How do we expect working in a game studio to change in the future?

COVID created huge disruptions for the games industry, with many studios needing to adapt to remote work. But this has also increased flexibility with working location and hours within the industry too, as well as advances in technology making it easier for people to work from home.

It’s predicted that AI is going to play an increasingly larger role in the game development cycle, with AI systems able to create art and code concepts quicker and easier than ever. However, there will still always be a need for people to refine and bug test any AI-produced work to ensure quality and consistency, as well as come up with new ideas that haven’t been seen before.

The game development and lifetime cycle has also changed radically within the last decade. No longer are games released and never touched again – newer games are expected to be updated and maintained for years after release. Public early access also gives players the opportunity to assist with quality testing and feedback while a game is still in the early stages of development, reducing the need for this role in-house.

There is also a huge demand for diversity amongst the games industry, with calls for higher levels of representation in games (and studios themselves) to reflect the diversity of the player base. And as games are reaching players from all around the world, ensuring content is culturally sensitive and accessible is key to tapping into growing markets.