Front-End Developer

  • Front-End Developer

The title of the front-end developer can be applied to numerous responsibilities within the game development industry, but in this case, the developer is an artist and programmer who works on a creative team to design, build, and maintain applications and online presence to support a game product.


Duties

Creative products that support a game title may include promotional websites and online storefronts, web applications, promotional videos on YouTube, presence on Twitter and Facebook, and other online elements. The front-end developer is a member of a team dedicated to the production of those assets and the game’s online presence from concept to rollout, in addition to continued maintenance. In preparation for a new consumer-targeted product, the front-end developer will work closely with studio game design staff to identify the style, theme, and aesthetic of the supported game title, and then participate in gathering necessary existing assets associated with the game. He or she will outline functional specifications, create design documentation, and complete quality assurance testing.

Both the scripting of code and creation of certain art elements will be the responsibility of the front-end developer. For accounts on existing social media platforms, the front-end developer may be tasked with designing and uploading branded profile layouts and applications. This person, when necessary, will collaborate with in-house or third party video production teams to create original content for the studio’s YouTube channel, and will update the consumer-facing sites on a regular basis. After launch, the developer is committed with maintaining the stability of the online product and will update and enhance the product when necessary. He or she should be proactive in identifying opportunities for improvement and address those opportunities with lead creative staff.

Skills & Education

A college degree in computer programming, graphic design, web development, or game development is applicable to this career, and a formal education is preferable. Specific required skills include proficiency with HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and Flash. Additional knowledge of PHP and MySQL, as well as AJAX, Drupal, and WordPress is necessary. The front-end developer should be capable of writing clear, well-commented code and possess excellent debugging skills. He or she must be familiar with multiple web browsers and Internet-compatible devices. Expertise with third party APIs such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube is required.

What to Expect

The front-end developer will work on a larger staff within the online development or digital presence staff to market the game title through consumer-focused online products designed to create a thriving community around the game and encourage player interaction. This position is not involved in the creation of the actual game but instead involves working closely with several members of the design and art teams to create an online presence that is seamlessly evolved from the game play experience. A path toward this career may begin in any area of software programming or art but should focus on online products and social media. Additionally, experience within a game design studio is necessary. The candidate should be familiar with the studio he or she is applying to and demonstrate a passion for the titles distributed by that studio.

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