Mumbai event: Understanding India's video gaming industry

Updated: 13 November, 2018 09:30 IST | Shunashir Sen | Mumbai

A talk this week will give people an insider's view of India's nascent video gaming industry

A still from Grand Theft Auto
A still from Grand Theft Auto

It can be a simple card game like teen patti. Or, it can be an incredibly sophisticated one like Grand Theft Auto, where the player is essentially a criminal rising up the ranks of the underworld, leaving behind a trail of thefts and assassinations that would make even the Italian mafia seem like amateurs in comparison. The point is video games come in all sorts of formats, such as sports or action-adventure. And a talk this week focuses on how newbies can successfully press the play button on a career in India's growing gaming industry.

Shagun Shah is the person who will be conducting it. Having started out in Mumbai, he now works with a gaming company in Bengaluru and tells us that almost anyone and everyone can find his niche within this profession. "You can come from any kind of background to get into the video games industry, because you are expected to be like a Renaissance man — you should know as much as you can about a bunch of things. So, anything you do thus holds some value," he says, adding that someone with a passion for writing could find a job working on a narrative fiction game for instance, while a person who's studied computer science and understands coding could become a developer instead.

Shagun Shah
Shagun Shah

Shah continues, "Some of the key areas of work include being an artist, where you actually draw things out to determine the look and feel of the game. Then there is the designer, whose job is similar to that of an architect, in the sense that he will tell the developer, 'Listen, I need all these things to happen and you have to make it work.' Apart from that, you also have product development. This is a very business-focused aspect of the whole process, where your job is to figure out how the game will make money. And then there are other periphe al components such as content writing and marketing."

He also says that it's vital to remember that India's gaming industry is a young one that's been around for about 20 years. It was essentially an offshoot of the IT industry, with developers and software experts who didn't want to continue with that profession eventually switching careers. That's why a lot of the gaming studios set up shop in Bengaluru, following the city's IT boom. "So, there is a genuine scope of getting a job within this sector in the country," Shah says, adding that his talk is meant to give a leg-up to people who want to exploit this opportunity.

On: November 17, 6.30 pm
At: Max Mueller Bhavan.
Log on to: (to register)

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First Published: 13 November, 2018 08:16 IST

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