Designer’s Weapon: Essentials Tools and Skills Game Designers Use

It takes a game designer with qualified skills who are able to channel their ideas and communicate them in a way that users can enjoy. Game designer also requires precision in their craft and not to mention effectiveness in the delivery of their work. To do so, they depend upon the exact tools to work on their masterpiece.
A tool is the extension of one’s hand, and a machine is but a complex tool. As the user, you have to pick the right tool for the point you’re trying to make. In this day and age, we are provided with a bountiful of tools in today’s technology. Yet, each tool may vary depending on its function, and many are similar. How can someone choose the appropriate one to get the job done effectively?

In Agate, our designers get the chance to learn and experts in various tools and skills. Supported by various talent development programs, our designers learn not just from their experiences but also keep leveling up their skills to match the rapid needs and updates in the game industry. Here are essential tools and skills game designers utilize in their work field.

tools and skills game designers

What Tools do Game Designers Utilize?

  1. Notion. so
    Notion. so is a great working and documentation app with multiple tools and features that are already built into it. With these tools, most basic management and database work related can be done quickly and easily. Additionally, a multi-layer page within the notion could make documentation more manageable and easy to find.

  2. Microsoft Office Excel
    No spreadsheet can be as simple and as good as MS Excel. Microsoft Excel provides designers with an easy database and analysis tool, that can be used for a lot of things, and create estimation and calculations even complex ones. In addition, a spreadsheet can be easily accessed from any browser anytime and anywhere, this tool is also a great tool for team projects.

  3. Miro
    Create a collaborated and centralize communication with pre-built templates or start from a clean slate. Miro provides us with design tools for brainstorming, creating a diagram, or simple project management. Easy to edit and huge working space for ideation and collaboration work and put all of our ideas into something that we can read. As a bonus, you could present your work in a slide show for better presentation.

  4. Machinations.io 
    What are a few things that are more difficult for a designer than balancing their game when seeing all the numbers they put without knowing how they will go at the end? Machination can do much more. Not only it will show you the estimation and the probability of the balance, but you could also track and simulate every number of the game from the start to the end and find the result within seconds.

  5. Unity
    This game engine might have been the most popular game engine for most game development that popular for making a game, but this is also one of the essential tools that will help the game designer to build an early prototype. Also, this tool could cover both 2D and 3D games build easily. But, you need some programming skills or a programmer if you want to use this tool.

  6. Unreal Engine 4
    This tool has powerful visual scripting, which is easy to understand for designers. Its level design tools are more convenient since we can edit the mesh directly in-engine by default. Plus it has blueprints, which (in our opinion) are better than Unity prefabs, with their parent-and-child system. Managing data for game designers and narrative designers alike is also helped by Unreal’s user-friendly data tables, instead of filling data in a JSON (for example).

  7. Adobe (XD, PS, etc.)
    Some people might think that most Adobe products are for artists and people who deal with the visuals of the product. However, Adobe products are great to help a designer to give a visual for our idea to everybody in the team and give us more leeway to express our minds and idea. The versatility of the adobe product gives us more flexibility to show the other of the visual of prototype, wireframe making, and early design for UX/UI worth the subscription price.

What Skill Does A Designer Needs?

A designer is responsible for coherent & effective product design (particularly on mechanics, features, and levels). They require to own relevant knowledge of the design process to ensure the design fits with the user’s desired aesthetics and is technically feasible. What are the skills needed for a designer to achieve those goals?

  1. Effective Collaborator
    As a game designer, you work towards a desirable goal, by collaboration designer can work effectively to produce the best game design.

  2. Great communication skills and teamwork
    Game designers work as part of a team. Communication plays an important role for designers to deliver their idea to all team members.

  3. Highly versatile in problem-solving skills.
    Designers meet problems on a daily basis. Hence, to deliver the best experience to the user, a designer needs to be versatile so they are able to tackle those problems.

  4. Proficient with game design, UX/UI, and User/Audience research.
    A game designer needs to be proficient in a wide aspect of game development. Such as game design, user experience, user interface, and also with their users.

  5. Strong planning and documentation skills
    To keep track of what designers do, documentation is important skill designers need to have. Designers also need to be able to manage and plan two-three steps further.

Are you ready to be the next game designer with us? We’re hiring! Check out our Designers role that is currently available on our Career Page.

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