Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Paul Shortt from Civil and Public Service Jobs to give some advice for people considering this job:

 

Paul Shortt

Industrial Relations Officer

Civil and Public Service Jobs

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  Paul Shortt
My current role requires a lot of self-motivation as it is largely autonomous, while colleagues are always on hand to give advice and counsel, the decisions as to how to progress cases or deal with problems are ultimately my call.

The job requires someone who is able to work under pressure, is comfortable with public speaking, is confident, assertive and decisive. These are all skills that can be learned with experience, involvement with organisations in school or university that involve managing workload, organising information and debating would all be useful in developing such skill sets.
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Elaine Reynolds - Games Designer and CEO of Simteractive

Elaine Reynolds is CEO of Games Developmnt Company Simterative. She has an honours BA in Psychology from TCD and an MSc in Computer Games Technology from Abertray University. 

A typical day for me

My typical day revolves around the running of Simteractive to ensure we are meeting our deadlines

My main tasks

To release the game we are working on and for it to be a huge success! Then the plan is to release more great games and to make a success of Simteractive.

What I like

I love coming up with game concepts, but that’s only a small part of game development. I like doing technical systems design and working with artists on the visual design. I like the business side too.

Work/life balance

When I'm not working on games I also like to play them! I also like acting and improvisation and spending time with family and friends.

Has your psychology degree proved useful?

Yes. For game design there is a lot about computer-human interaction, reward mechanisms, motivation and attention. There is also a lot of emphasis on analytics and tracking what players are doing. For game design, it is good to have a broad range of interests and experience. People then have different ideas and approaches.

What is Simteractive?

It’s the company I set up to develop casual, free-to-play simulation games. Games like SimCity and Theme Park were my favourite games growing up and I wanted to develop games like that. We are developing our first game for tablets and smartphones.

Had you worked in the games industry before setting up Simteractive?

My first job was as a programmer with Traveller’s Tales, which is famous for Lego Star Wars. I worked on the game Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian. Then I worked at Lionhead Studios as a game designer for four years.

Favourite subjects in school

Technology and Tech Graphics.

The best thing about my job

I like doing technical systems design and working with artists on the visual design.

What would you advise students considering a career in games?

I’d recommend students go beyond their course work and work on extra projects in their spare time.

Work on a small game, get it done and start again. It is good to be able to show and talk about a game you made in a job interview – and it’s important to get hands-on experience. 



Article by: Smart Furtures