With the stories we hear about how toxic or downright dangerous public backlash can be towards gamedevs, what advice do you have for younger devs/people looking to get into the industry when confronted by this unfortunate reality?

There's two major pieces of advice I have.

For people who have not yet broken into the industry, reach out to devs and learn what you can from them. Ask them questions if you don't understand something and try to figure out what they mean if they answer you. Take the concepts of what you learn from them and apply it to your own personal work.

Your goal is not to have what you say acknowledged by these devs or to say something that you think is clever. You should be looking to these devs as people to learn from. Hiring managers will not care if you were acknowledged for saying something clever once by some game dev on twitter. We will, however, be impressed if you can do the work and can demonstrate that in both your own work and in the interview.

For those of us in the industry, my advice is different. I heavily suggest keeping any personal stuff as far away from your work as possible. Resist the urge to post about work stuff on your personal social media account. Keep your personal account personal, keep a work account for work. If you must post about game dev, do so hypothetically. Never talk about work stuff on your personal account. This is because your personal account irrevocably becomes a work account the moment you post about work on it, and anything you say on that account will be taken as a statement representative of the game and your employer for all time.

This can be especially difficult for the juniors who have been dreaming about a career in the game industry since they've been kids and have finally made it. When I started working on my first AAA franchise, I was super proud of the fact I joined the ranks and wanted to shout it from the heavens so that I could get all the jealous acknowledgement from those others still looking in. It really isn't healthy to make your job your identity, because it can mean a real loss of identity if there is a loss of job. Given the volatility of the game industry at large, I think there are much healthier things to make core to your identity than "worked on X game franchise".

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