Education

Be a gamechanger

The gaming industry presents innumerable opportunities for those with a penchant for it

Sumit Thilak (28) has a unique problem. He is in charge of 469 cars that have just been used once in their lifetime. His boss is continually reminding him to make sure that the vehicles get utilised, at least four times, this year. Also, his boss wants him to source and buy 500 new cars.

In case you thought Sumit worked for a car rental business, or Ola or Uber, you are mistaken. Sumit is a “Car Designer” at a leading mobile games company, that is the world leader in “parking and driving” games. All the cars are all virtual and positioned in the many car games of the company. Sumit’s KRA (key responsibility area) is “To assemble the largest collection of virtual cars in the world, and get them placed in at least 10 games each”.

Jobs like Sumit’s was nonexistent, even five years ago. The massive boom in mobile gaming has created innumerable employment opportunities for those interested.

Revenue

There are about three billion mobile phones in the world that are getting smarter every minute. Each mobile phone has at least four mobile games on it. That is 12 billion mobile games. Owners of smart mobile phones are a restless lot. They get bored easily. That is why they download an average of four new mobile games every month. That is an additional twelve billion games a month. Who makes these games? Who has the brains, knowledge, style, art and design sensibilities to delight all of us with those ‘can’t put down’ titles, (think of Candy Crush for a moment) every single day? Young, passionate, super talented professionals in mobile game companies, of course. Gaming companies are one of the biggest employers in the new global economy, and their revenue is higher than that of Hollywood, Bollywood and all the ‘wood’ put together.

Diversity

There are over one million mobile games in app stores today. The diversity among these games is mind-boggling. Never has the world been treated to such high quality and varied entertainment content before. The top genres of mobile games include racing, role playing, puzzles, card games, arcade, and casino. The real ‘software’ that powers up these games are people. Game companies need car designers (like Sumit) to create real-life like cars for their games, ‘fashion stylists and make-up artists for dress-up games, mathematicians and statisticians for card and casino games, chefs and recipe experts for cooking games, translators for languages, and doctors and nurses for hospital themed medical games. Gaming, today, hires the most diverse range of professionals in the world. There is a job for everyone — rocket scientists, snipers, child psychologists poets and song writers included.

The most significant leverage of mobile games is that they are global. The leading games on the app stores are popular in every country, in the world. The natural extension is that the companies that make these games are also global in their outlook. Also, since the product (the game) is ‘virtual’, employees and contractors of game companies need not belong to a particular country or geography. This aspect of gaming allows and encourages truly global employment. Freelance websites like Upwork.com, allows everyone to get small to large projects to either earn pocket money, or engage as a full-time career. Mobile gaming companies generate a large amount of these projects.

Traditionally, parents have not understood the business of gaming and have naturally scoffed at it being a career opportunity. With the advent of three billion mobile phones, that has completely changed. The opportunities are inclusive and rewarding for all disciplines of education, without a bias. Parents must, therefore, allow children to play games, explore their natural talents, and encourage them to take up the education streams of their choice. Gaming will provide top-class employment opportunity for every educated citizen, and can easily solve India’s unemployment problem.

The writer is CEO and Co-founder, Games2win.

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Printable version | Apr 5, 2020 7:56:16 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/education/be-a-gamechanger/article27398815.ece

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