So you want to get into the game industry?  Well sweetheart getting into the big studios can be a serious bitch of a task.  As a result, a lot of people do go the indie route for many different reasons.  Some people say “fuck the man” and want to be their own boss.  Some don’t want their creativity restricted by some micromanaging super shit whose imagination is dry as melba toast.  Others just want an opportunity to work in the industry but don’t know how.  And you’re probably naïve…that’s why this article is definitely for you.

If you want in on game design as a programmer, artist, or a musician but don’t know how to start, working for a small indie team is a great way to get your feet wet.  However, the only people that are hiring are usually doing it through a want ad on craigslist or reddit.  This is where your dreams can turn into a little girl being lured into a white unmarked van by a skinny bearded fellow named Gary who promises candy….with candy clearly being code for DICK!  This article is going to help you spot all the Gary’s who would do harm to innocent little girls such as yourself.

What’s that?  Too smart to fall for Gary’s tricks?  Here’s an example of a booby trap advertisement you could foolishly fall into

Getting hired to work for a stranger who can’t get his want ads on a reputable website is one of many signs that you’re working for a shyster.  Aaaaaannnnddddd here are some more…

Only Their Ideas Are Valid

There’s a good chance your emperor loves their new clothes when they direct their ideas to you….because when you tell them you can’t see their vision they get offended and want to chop your head off.  How dare you challenge your king peasant!

When it comes to creativity a good boss is humble enough to realize their ideas may not be the best.  They will brainstorm with their employees to conjure up better ideas.  The opposite of this scenario is when a boss exerts a high level of jackassery by making you execute only their ideas because they are stupid enough to think they’re foolproof.  This will automatically make the game your working on a reflection of how gamers will feel playing it: like a miserable piece of shit.

Your highness will also be very insecure to criticism.  If challenged they will give you that blank stare.  You know the one that cries you broke my fucking brain!  We’re all human, we all have flaws.  If this asshole can’t deal with that you should definitely not be dealing with them.

You Think Their Ideas Suck Donkey Balls

You ever hear stupid fucking shit like this:

I was watching my kids play Super Mario Bros. last night and they were really having a good time.  I want to make our game like that.  But we will use Polish painters instead of Italian plumbers and the bad guy will be a giant crocodile.  That way he can kinda look like Bowser!

Or maybe you’ve heard verbal diarrhea like this:

Heathstone is really popular now.  We should make a card game IP but copy parts of Magic the Gathering by making different factions where some help each other and others oppose each other.  We can call it Magic Stone!  That way we will get both the Heathstone and the Magic the Gathering market so we will do double their sales!

Or maybe your ears shut down to prevent your brain from getting dumber when these syllables crossed through the air:

Call of Duty makes billions of dollars a year.  All we have to do is make a first person shooter with army people and we’ll make oodles and oodles of money!

Sure ideas are never 100% original as they are often inspired by other ideas.  However, you can’t just flat out copy and paste ideas because you saw something you thought was cool.  If you’re game director is spewing donkey cum ideas like these ones above, it’s a sure sign this game is going to suck the big one.

Promises to Pay You in A Couple of Months

Does Captain Cunt live in his car?  There’s one sign that he’s going to consistently miss your weekly paycheques.  Don’t take it personally.  He will also be absent minded with the other team members too, so quit being a self-centred diva.  It’s not always about you princess!

The second someone makes you an offer to work for them for free with the promise you’ll gain experience, fame, or riches later on is delusional.  There is absolutely no guarantee their game will fly.  The asshole doesn’t want to risk anything from their own personal life but has no guilt in robbing you of your time, money, or well-being.

This is the same for game directors paying you a pukey salary.  Realize your worth and don’t sell yourself short.  It’s their vision, their pain, not yours.  Don’t be a chump.

Talks About How Much Money the Game Is Going to Make

If your boss talks about how this new game is going to make soooo much money it only means one of two certainties: certainly they have a magical crystal ball which truly sees the future or they’re certainly talking out of their ass.  I’m betting Uncle Zeeks farm of inbred cousins (I know it doesn’t sound pricey but I’m highly conservative) that the latter is true.

There’s a good chance the chief drank too much firewater while writing the accounting books and decided to drunkenly scrawl $1, 000, 000 to look smart.  Or to be more practical, they just look at what other games make and assume they will make the same.  Because that’s the fucking law of physics according to them.

You never really know how much money a game can potentially make until you begin marketing.  And even then the numbers can be greatly off.  A game director who claims their IP will make billions from day one should be treated like that dark abandoned house in a horror movie.  Don’t be that dumb blonde girl who walks into it loudly shouting Todd, are you in here!  Because we all know Todd wasn’t fucking retarded enough to walk into the murder house in the first place….while staying completely silent when his name is called.

It’s All About Themselves

Does your game director start his sentences in the following ways:

  • Once again I came up with another great game idea…
  • I have many multi-disciplinary talents…
  • When I build this game…
  • As the game director I know….
  • Only I have the charisma to do press interviews…
  • <Insert Member of the Opposite Sex> always wants me, it’s such a distraction…

If your boss is talking to you like they’re reciting their godamn LinkedIn profile, chances are they also think their shit smells like fudge mixed with applesauce.  Well I got news for you!  It probably looks like fudge mixed with applesauce but it smells like rotten apples mixed with cinnamon shit!  Also they’re more interested in their own personal success than the IP.  The problem with this is the game isn’t coming first, your boss’ fragile ego is.

Learn to walk away from narcissistic fools as they will provide zero value to the game they’re producing.  Anyone who tries to get into any industry solely based on becoming rich, famous, or any other selfish goal will instantly create a toxic environment.

Lazy as Fuck

The maiden voyage of this new ship you work on isn’t going anywhere when the captain spends all his time below deck sexting the local wenches.  If your game director believes he just comes up with the ideas and you only execute, there’s a problem.

Sure they’re not an artist/programmer/sound engineer but this flaky fuck can be doing other things that need to be done.  Industry research, project planning, marketing, PR, etc. not lying on the couch thinking they’re smart for making you do all the work.  Just because someone is the ‘boss’ it doesn’t relieve them of duty.  The best bosses work the hardest because they understand referent power.  Basically if your employees see you working hard they will be encouraged to work hard as well.

Boss’ who watch YouTube videos or Facebook surf all day become Stevie Wonder level blind to what’s actually going on with the project.  And when they don’t see the progress they think should be made they become angry trolls and start finger pointing.  Which conveniently leads me to my next point…

Will Talk Trash About You and Other Members of the Team

You ever talk to someone at work that shit talks all the other employees?  There’s a 99.9% chance, with a margin of error of 00.1%, that they also talk shit about you.  If your boss goes about spewing garbage like Brady is a lazy fuck or Francis can’t find his asshole with two hands and his tongue they’re not problem solvers.  They’re problem identifiers.

A problem identifier is a special breed of negative super fuck.  They look at problems and stupidly compound them with their useless fucktard opinion which offers no useful value.  This behaviour is similar to the old axiom of setting a sinking ship on fire.  If that’s the case, you better jump into a life boat before this asshole burns those as well.

A game director who spends his time on criticizing and judging others with little information has a serious arrogance problem.  What’s even worse they’re not focusing on the biggest problem of all; how to finish the game.  If you see these signs abort this launch into mediocrity.  This game isn’t getting done and if it does it will be a complete mess.

Thinks All Other Games Are Stupid and Theirs is Superior

If you’re boss says their fighting game idea is better than Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat and you ask why and their answer is because they suck this production is in for big problems.  Your boss thinks these IP’s suck because he feels threatened by them.

Their inferiority complex will not aid you in your quest of becoming a game developer but hinder it.  How you naively ask?  The second you come up with a fantastic idea or efficient method of doing things they will ban you from doing it because it wasn’t their idea.  This in turn will churn out a vomit comet of a game you won’t want on your resume.  Not only does this fabulous bitch believe that other games are beneath them but also your skill set.

Good game directors respect other developers work even if they don’t agree with it.  They also respect other people’s opinions because they realize that they are human beings not slave machines.  They want to see the people they work with grow, not be bolted down by the chains of their egotism.  If your game director is running their studio like a scene out of Amistad, it’s time to brake your bonds and scream “GIVE US, US FREE!!!”

Is Not 100% Direct About Their Intentions

A lack of honesty is the biggest enemy to any project let alone a game being developed.  Only a marvellously extraordinary Nazi will try and keep you compartmentalized from the bigger picture.  What’s even worse is the reason.  They believe if you find out the truth of their intentions you will get up and leave.  Guess what, you probably will.

Ass-master game directors will keep you in the dark and do the following:

  • Telling you everything is fine when it’s actually a disaster
  • Secretly paying their friend more than you cause you’re not in that special clique
  • Looking for a way to get rid of you after your job is done
  • Hiding outside criticism of the game from you
  • Big decisions that you should be involved in cause it directly involves your job

And that’s just some of of the stupidity that they will hide from you just to keep you in control.  They do it because they are dumb enough to think they are smart enough to fool you forever.  The house of cards they build eventually comes down and the taller they build it the more 9/11ish the end result.

Trust goes a long way in a group environment and in getting the job done right.  If this rotting testicle sac believes they’re some master strategist by keeping you in the dark their IQ is -6.  The only objective they will achieve is burying their IP.  The real tragedy here however is they will have buried you as well.

Holds Grudges/Vendettas

I once got my boss in trouble from her boss…for doing my job properly.  She was so mad that she raised her fist in the air and proclaimed “I’m going to rip George’s fucking face off!” (the information would be later given to me by a gossipy co-worker).  And yes she tried to employ tactics to fuck me over.  Don’t worry.  I don’t work for that bleeding virginia anymore.

A good director, or boss for that matter, doesn’t let their emotions get the best of them.  They put the work first before their pussy feelings because that’s called being fucking mature.  You’re doing grown up work, and by definition grown up work can only be done by a godamn…you guessed it…grownup!  Game directors trying to fuck you over for some petty bullshit results in a toxic work environment.  It makes you on edge, diverts focus from the task at hand, and you eventually become depressed at work.

If you’re boss goes out of their way to make you miserable just to validate the fact that they’re in charge I challenge you to prove them wrong.  You can easily do that by walking out the door.  But if you really want to hit them where it hurts take a shit in a bag and put it in the vent.  Like deep in the air vent where it’s hard to find.  Next time they say something fucking stinks in here you can tell them yah it smells like you’re fucking attitude… *slams down letter of splendid resignation.

Not Willing to Learn Anything

You ever meet people who live in a bubble?  Jar Jar Binks’ whole race lived in bubbles under the sea far away from the Naboo civilization or any civilized society for that matter.  That’s why the Gungans are a bunch of dumb farm animals and Jar Jar is the most despised alien hick in the Star Wars universe.

A game director set in their ways is no different from the Gungan complex.  If they just want to stay in their little world where they know everything and are not threatened by new information, you will be building a horribly generic game.  Being smart isn’t about knowing everything it’s about continuous learning.  Also your boss will come up with some really stupid shit that will put the game on course for maximum suck.

If you notice your game director ignoring good sources of inspiration in the industry, shooting down game news you send them, or claims they’re too busy when you try to teach them something new you’re working for a grade A asshole.  And the worst part is they’re not going to change so don’t waste your time trying to do so.

Aaaaaaand Our Thrilling Conlcusion!

If you’ve noticed a couple of these behaviours exhibited from your game director, chances are you work for a cuntlord.  You’re in an abusive relationship and its time to leave that man sistah!  And when you do, just like any abusive relationship, they will make some sort of ‘golden offer’ to try to keep you with them.  They will tell you that they will change, offer you something better, and that they love you.  Guess what?  They don’t love you.  They love what you do for them and in some ultra fucked up way they believe they are entitled to your skill set.

If this has happened to you in the past don’t let it get you down.  You’re not stupid.  You took a risk and it didn’t pan out, that’s it.  Taking risks is a good thing, and any creative environment requires that trait.  You just need to learn how to spot a bad scene and hightail it out of there immediately.

Yah there are a lot of selfish dicks out there, but guess what?  There are some genuinely great dicks out there too who just want to make a great game.  So don’t give up.  If you find a game director whose goals closely align to yours reach out.  It could be the beginning of an awesome indie game and most importantly, and incredible adventure.

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