From education to employment

Game programmer



K1: How to approach the development of interactive, real-time applications for gaming platforms, including an awareness of industry-standard programming languages, application programming interfaces (APIs), tools, engines and frameworks. Back to Duty

K2: The syntax and structure of an industry-standard programming language (above and beyond visual programming languages) used for the development of games (for example C++, C#). Back to Duty

K3: The fundamental graphical and mathematical principles that underpin the operation of real-time graphics in two and three-dimensions. Back to Duty

K4: The characteristics of modern hardware platforms and how they support the efficient function of interactive, real-time graphical applications. Back to Duty

K5: Approaches to balancing quality and performance requirements to achieve, monitor and maintain acceptable frame rates and memory footprints for a real-time interactive application. Back to Duty

K6: How to use tools to identify and optimise performance bottlenecks in real-time applications. Back to Duty

K7: The role of debugging tools, crash reports, automated testing and continuous integration workflows in creating robust software. Back to Duty

K8: The role of staged deployment, monitoring and analytics in releasing, tracking and refining games. Back to Duty

K9: Common principles of good software design applied in the games industry including contrasting approaches and priorities (e.g. object-oriented vs. data-oriented) Back to Duty

K10: How a complete asset pipeline for a game operates, including the technical requirements, processing stages and tools involved in bringing assets into the game. Back to Duty

K11: How to use version control and project management tools to plan and coordinate the delivery of development tasks. Back to Duty

K12: Common development methodologies and how they are applied in game development. Back to Duty

K13: The broad range of roles involved in the game development process, and the different strengths and perspectives that multi-disciplinary teams bring to the creative process. Back to Duty

K14: Where to find information on the latest technological innovations for the games industry. Back to Duty

K15: The role of rapid prototyping and agile approaches in innovation. Back to Duty

K16: The organisation’s standards with respect to coding, documentation and issue tracking, and how they relate to wider practice in the software industries. Back to Duty

K17: Publisher’s technical requirements for target platforms, where to obtain them and the tools and systems available to support developers to meet those requirements. Back to Duty

K18: The business stakeholders in a project and how multi-disciplinary development teams can generate value within the context of different business models. Back to Duty

K19: Relevant data protection laws including GDPR. Back to Duty

K20: Security approaches to prevent products being compromised, and everyday good practice in security including password policies, phishing and use of VPNs. Back to Duty

K21: The relative merits of different game engines, third-party frameworks and tools, and when to use them to speed up the development process. Back to Duty

K22: How to balance the requirements and availability of team resources (for example staff time, software licencing) with respect to the engineering and maintenance of a game’s asset pipeline. Back to Duty

K23: The range of different disciplines involved in the development process and their typical skillsets and expectations in terms of technologies, tools and asset formats. Back to Duty

K24: The specialist operation of a specific hardware architecture or gaming platform and how to engineer efficient solutions which target its specific capabilities. Back to Duty

K25: How to balance the requirements and availability of team resources (staff time, software licencing) with respect to providing the maximum benefit to their users. Back to Duty

K26: How to use externally facing support portals and project tracking tools in order to effectively track and document technologies for sharing with a wide user-base. Back to Duty


S1: Program interactive, real-time applications for gaming platforms using an industry-standard programming language, incorporating APIs, tools, engines or frameworks appropriate to employer requirements. Back to Duty

S2: Implement and adapt contemporary real-time algorithms in two and three-dimensional games. Back to Duty

S3: Use profiling tools and techniques to achieve, monitor and maintain an acceptable real-time framerate for an interactive game. Back to Duty

S4: Track memory usage and identify opportunities for reducing requirements. Back to Duty

S5: Write code informed by the characteristics of modern hardware platforms (e.g. shader programming, multi-threading). Back to Duty

S6: Use debugging tools and automated testing systems to develop robust code bases. Back to Duty

S7: Use continuous integration workflow within the deployment lifecycle as part of a multi-disciplinary software team. Back to Duty

S8: Write robust, well-tested, maintainable code which is easy to adapt to changing requirements. Back to Duty

S9: Use an industry-standard version control system. Back to Duty

S10: Use an industry-standard project management system from the perspective of a developer. Back to Duty

S11: Adapt or extend existing tool chains to support new features and/or optimise workflows. Back to Duty

S12: Apply industry-standard development methodologies within day-to-day working practice. Back to Duty

S13: Manage complex relationships with diverse stakeholders and communicate information effectively to different audiences. Back to Duty

S14: Provide technical leadership and direction with respect to the workflow of other team members. Back to Duty

S15: Research, document and articulate the opportunities and threats presented by new industry technologies. Back to Duty

S16: Follow studio coding best-practices and participate in keeping them relevant and up to date. Back to Duty

S17: Give and receive feedback in code reviews in an objective and professional manner. Back to Duty

S18: Develop games and/or prototypes using an industry-standard or in-house game engine. Back to Duty

S19: Make justified choices about the implementation of different features and tools and their effect on the overall workload of the team. Back to Duty

S20: Write software which contributes to the player experience while balancing the extensibility and performance requirements for an evolving game design. Back to Duty

S21: Work as part of interdisciplinary teams, collaborating closely with disciplines outside programming, for example artists, game designers and audio engineers. Back to Duty

S22: Create innovative game mechanics for which solutions are unknown. Back to Duty

S23: Develop reusable technologies targeting specific hardware architectures or gaming platforms. Back to Duty

S24: Make justified decisions about the implementation of different features and their effect on quality and workload for their technology’s user base. Back to Duty

S25: Work as part of a user-focused product team, incorporating multi-disciplinary input from outside of the team, for example from game software programmers, artists, game designers and audio engineers. Back to Duty

S26: Communicate and evangelise technology solutions to promote engagement and uptake among the user-base. Back to Duty

S27: Profile and optimise code created by their technology users. Back to Duty


B1: Reliable, objective and capable of independent working. Back to Duty

B2: Initiative and personal responsibility to overcome challenges and take ownership for project solutions. Back to Duty

B3: Respect for other disciplines and an understanding of the role of diverse experiences and backgrounds in a successful creative process. Back to Duty

B4: Commitment to continuous professional development; maintaining their knowledge and skills in relation to technology developments, and sharing best practice in their organisation around all aspects of game development. Back to Duty

B5: Maintains awareness of trends and innovations in the subject area, utilizing a range of academic literature, online sources, community interaction and conference attendance. Back to Duty

B6: Acts with integrity with respect to ethical, legal and regulatory ensuring the protection of personal data, safety and security. Back to Duty

B7: A strong work ethic and commitment in order to meet the standards required. Back to Duty

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