How to Build Your Portfolio as a Video Game Developer

Photo by Scott Graham on Unsplash

Whether you are just getting started as a Video Game Developer or you are a tenured veteran in this field, having a portfolio can help you stand out especially when applying for a new job. When a portfolio is well-made, it can really wow employers and big companies. 

That being said, building a portfolio in the right way is very important and here are five key things to keep in mind when you are structuring your portfolio:

List your Skills/Achievements

Listing your technical skills such as programming, algorithms, or writing can be really beneficial as it helps employers evaluate you if you are fit for a position in their company. Remember, employers only spend a few minutes looking at portfolios on average, so it is important to get straight to the point.

Some essential information that more technical careers tend to overlook is their soft skills. You can be the best video game developer who is very versatile but if you cannot communicate effectively with the team, you will have a hard time. Listing soft skills such as your intrapersonal skills and being a team player are key to showcase. 

Showcase the Game Documentation Process of your Project/s

The game documentation process that you need to showcase in your portfolio does not need to be five or ten slides long, it should just be a summary of the process itself. Here is a sample of a short but simple and easily readable template of the game documentation process for your game:

  • Title of Game Project
  • Game Engine or related software you used
  • Programming language/s used
  • Genre of game project
  • Game length
  • How much time it took to develop
  • Role in development (if team project: developer, game designer, writer, etc.)

For additional information on game documentation, here is a link to 11 Useful Document Formats for Game Designers. However, remember to summarize the documentation when integrating it into your portfolio. The last thing you want to have is a wall of text that nobody wants to read.

Include a Tech Video Demonstration of your Game Project/s

Humans are visual creatures at heart, so including a hundred lines of code isn’t really going to be looking amazing on your portfolio. This being said, a video demo showcasing the technical aspects of your video game project can be really beneficial. In big companies, this is how video game developers pitch their projects to investors.

A video demo of your game project ideally should be less than five minutes to keep your audience’s attention. Here, you need to showcase the game’s core mechanics, its gameplay loop, and its unique selling points if you are pitching to investors. 

If your game is lacking in the art design department, you shouldn’t worry too much as long as the core of the game’s mechanics deliver. 

Remember to Include your Relevant Information

A portfolio isn’t just a creative and technical showcase of your skills, you also need to include your relevant information such as a copy of your resume, contact information, and email address. If necessary, you may also choose to include your education and work experience. 

Additionally, relevant links can also be included such as your LinkedIn profile or a GitHub repository for your project.

Host your Projects Online

It has been a trend in game development to post your projects online as most employers will request your project and it is more convenient to do that than send a zip file of your projects. Here are two websites for game developers where you can host your projects and creative work online:

  • Itch.io – best for indie developers – includes full games, free and paid assets such as art and music.
  • GitHub – repository for code of games and applications software, used by many companies and developers worldwide

Conclusion

A portfolio is a key step in the process as it proves that you can work in the game industry. Finding a job in the game industry can be tough at first but with a bit of luck, determination, and a well-made portfolio, you can soon land that job that you dream of!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *