Blog

More Than a Game - Life on the Other Side of the Screen
8/28/2012

Working with a video game is quite an interesting experience. Many people think it’s all fun and games, no pun intended, but in reality, it is quite a tedious adventure. If there was one question we get the most, it’s “how’d you first get started in the gaming world?”

So, what better way to answer that question than to grab a few of us and tell our stories? Our first depiction will be from Noc154 who is the Balance Team lead. Many of you have seen him on our Balance Challenges, but if you are unfamiliar, check out the interview below.

Noc Signing Posters

What was your first game?

The first game I played? I can’t remember exactly which one, but it dates all the way back to the original NES. My guess is either Mario or Duck Hunt. Ha!

Were you active in any gaming communities?

I was active in the Counter-strike 1.6 community. I played professionally in CS 1.6 when the Cyber-athlete Amateur League was still around. A bunch of my close friends and I got together and built a team from the ground up to reach CAL-Invite. We were ranked Top 5 in the United States for a few years.

(GotFrag) – “Formula1 is a household name to a plethora of people, probably a majority, especially if you have been around for a while. What comes to mind is an old and dead CAL-invite West coast powerhouse.”

http://web.archive.org/web/20030613011507/http://caleague.com/?page=teaminfo&div=csm&id=701

How did you get your first job in gaming?

After getting my degree in Finance, I decided to pursue a career and longtime passion in gaming. I contacted the contracting agencies around my area and landed an interview with Microsoft for Age of Empires. And now, here I am 2 years down the road still pursuing my dream. ;)

What advice do you have for someone wanting to work in gaming?

Improve your communication/writing skills. More than likely you will have to converse with different teams and departments on a daily basis.

Remain passionate and optimistic about your work. There are many jumps and hurdles between you and the end goal. Stay focused and committed.

What is an average day for you look like?

Getting in the office and making myself a hot cup of coffee. Check my email and the forums for any new updates. Start playing 1v1 games with the playbalance team and discuss issues.

What is the hardest part of your job?

Competing and performing at the highest level as a RTS player. We have exceptionally talented players on this team and keeping up with each other in terms of RTS skill requires dedication and commitment.

What is the best part of your job?

It’s always a blast to work alongside Milo, Kieffer, and Alex. It’s what makes this job so enjoyable on a day to day basis.

Thanks to Noc for sharing his insights so far. This is the first of many so be on the lookout for more from our team.

Have a question you’d like to have answered about working in the gaming industry? Ask us here:
http://forums.ageofempiresonline.com/forums/274567/ShowThread.aspx#274567