Originally Posted by Morello
Like other design things presented here, it's a bit nebulous, but here are some qualities we value specifically for live. This also comes with the other things, generally, that qualify one to be a designer;
* Strong grasp on the game or abstract game design (the less you know abstraction, the more raw game knowledge you need, though both are good).
* "Engineered" thought-process and problem-solving. Analytical minds craft problem solving purposefully and ask how they can more effectively solve problems. It's not enough to solve problems, it's solving how you solve problems
* Understanding of long-term effects on game changes, ability to rationally understand chain-reactions of small changes. This is part of the previous one, but is more important on a live game.
* A passion for game health, not only including balance, but fun and engagement as well.
* Additional things I'm not thinking of at 1:30am
Basically, you have to still be qualified for a design role, but balance is one of the harder jobs to do since you not only have to do the design, you have to balance work against current expectations and long-term effects. It relies a little less on being creatively strong, but it relies more on fundamentals. Additionally, game knowledge is a greater boon to get you on your feet while you learn (if the candidate is a greenhorn).
Sounds great, so far this mostly matches my vision of this part of game design. I wonder if there is a way to prove/test/improve anything of this without the need to make a complete game or mod for this...
Zileas or any other Rioter
Good morning. Although this thread is created to discuss questions about hiring experienced game designers, it would be very nice if any Rioter clarified a few more questions about hiring to Riot overall, if you dont mind. There is not many opportunities to ask about this, so i think it would be of great use for many people.
Why does Riot mostly look for Senior/Lead positions, that therefore obviously require significant experience? Of course a great leader is half of success and there cant be too many too good people in a team. But still, why not promote someone from your staff to this position? Someone who has worked for some time as member of Riot team and therefore knows exactly what must be done and how? I may be mistaken, but is really an outsider much better than a core member in questions of game-design of LoL, even if he is, lets say, some SCII designer?
What each person needs to improve to get a job at Riot and what are the chances for them right now?
creator of successful but quite simple in design farmville-style game
creator of mod/map, deep but not hardcore, that lacks graphics/music/etc and therefore popularity
recently graduated financial expert who is interested in gaming industry and can make a variety of in-depth articles about game-design of LoL and other games or compare them
CS graduate of one of the top 10 US schools, that plays LoL a lot, but not much other games
Game-design is a very vague thing. Knowing how many people treat themself "experts" in game-design and want to work at such gaming giant like Riot, I completely understand why you have such high requirements like "graduate top university" or "create a game". This alone gives you significant proof that the hired person cant be too bad, but in my opinion it only determines his minimal threshold of competence, uncut diamonds can be anywhere.
And no need to say that creating a game or even a mod requires much broader set of skills than just game-design: programming, graphics, music or leadership. So, you are either jack of all trades, or good leader that does not necessarily imply being good game-designer. (if most Rioters are exceptional and have made games on their own before joining Riot (which is pretty probable), i'm glad for your team, but usually people like this prefer to work on new projects or create their own rather than supporting/upgrading existing ones. No offence, even the greatest game giants eventually get tired of their franchise (f.e. bungie), plus new or individual projects usually offer more in terms of both money and creativity. Though considering how popular LoL is, if you are looking for such people you'll find your several geniuses (not evil plz
) that would be more than enough for senior or lead roles)
In my opinion, game designer is the most helpless role of game development on its own. In terms of transparency of his work. A good programmer can develop an engine and make some primitive game-like thing with abstract graphics, a good artist can show beautiful artwork. What can game designer do? Only a lackluster game design document or some ideas that mean a little bit more than nothing in game industry.
Also, game design itself includes a significant variety of interconnected aspects. One person may be good in one thing, but bad in another. New ideas, maps, balance, systems. Of course its good if one designer can do anything, its possible and its something that every ambitious game-designer should strive for, but still i think Its better to have 4 narrow specialists who cant do anything else, than several jacks of all trades.
Err, sorry, point 3 got out of control... Would you comment anything of it? And the real questions to all this are:
How do you test abilities of applicants? Or resume and cover letter are enough? Like "he's made a map for SCII and graduated Oxford, should be fine". Aside from one little question about "worst ability in LoL" i havent noticed any other gamedesign-related questions. Or is it good to state most of your ideas and vision of game in cover letter? Or you make online video or chat interviews? Or you may give some tasks like "make a rough design of a new map"/"give in-depth comparative analysis of LoL and Dota"/"any improvements to LoL". Is it possible that solid articles/ideas on game design may inspire Rioters and how important are they when you make final judgement? Are there any trial periods without need to go to your office and once you are there?
Sorry if this was answered before. I read whole thread but its huge...
I appreciate your answers. Maybe there will be more.
P.S. Had to create an US account and get it to level5 to ask this xD
Gosh, there's another thing to improve - tutorials and in-game advices for newbies. A LOT of things arent explained ingame to think about it...