Millions of gamers dream of turning their passion into a career making games. We sat down with SimCity BuildIt Creative Director Petri Ikonen to find out how coin-op games in the ‘70s inspired him to become a designer.
How did you get started working in video games?
I used to be a scriptwriter for a television drama, but did a scary move 12 years ago when I changed my career to the games industry. Never regretted a day. I love video games in all forms and it has been a dream career for me.
How did you first get interested in video games?
I remember seeing an arcade cabinet on a ferry in the late ‘70s. It was Gun Fight by Taito and it was very fascinating. Those little pixelated images created a world and told me a story. I remember staring at the intro loop for hours and eventually I finally got some coins from my parents to play the game.
Shortly after I got my first computer and began to play and create very simple games, using the basic programming language on Apple II and Commodore 64.
What advice do you have for kids who want to work in the video game industry?
Study hard, the games industry has many kinds of roles, all education is good. Hopefully games are a passion for you. Create your own board games or digital games and play a lot of games on different platforms. Also remember that communication skills will be your most valuable asset when working in the games industry.
Build your dream city in SimCity BuildIt here.
This post was originally published on EA.com/news: http://www.ea.com/news/why-i-make-games-simcity-buildits-petri-ikonen
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