I was reading Stuff.com this morning and stumbled across this article lecturing readers about the difficulty of getting into the video game industry. David Hodgson, author of a little book called Paid to Play:An Insider’s Guide to Video Game Careers shares some of his infinite wisdom with us by saying: “It’s not like working in the industry is sitting around playing video games.” He goes on to explain that the first requirement is to “know yourself.” His book is kind enough to give aspiring game makers the tools for “self assessment.”
I know, I know. People need this kind of stuff. It helps them to grasp their dreams. Can I help it that I feel like it’s aimed at morons? What self respecting adult gamer with an interest in this industry thinks he’s going to get paid $90K a year to play Gears of War? If that guy exists, I want to throw him out a window. But it’s not the book itself that bothers me. A lot of people would be glad to find such a guide to help them go down the career path they desire. I think ultimately there’s some tone to the general presentation that suggests there’s a whole lot of gamers out there that think this industry would be a cakewalk. That’s where the rub lies for me — not in well written text, but in the angle of presentation.
On the other hand, maybe I’m utterly wrong and America’s sofas really are cluttered with gamers plugging countless hours into Xbox Live and waiting for a phone call from the company of their dreams who sensed their existance via mental telepathy. Are gamers interested in this industry really doing their utmost to be a part of what they love? Or do we really need books like this to handhold us through the process?