Starting Your Game Studio: How to Create an Effective Team
What you'll learn
- Identify the roles in your game startup and how to balance them
- Understand how different personalities affect team dynamics
- Explore your personal and team's motivation to start a game studio
- Balance business and creativity in your game startup
- Understand the team composition of successful game studios, and how they deal with decision-making
- No prior knowledge is required
Learn the fundamentals of an effective game startup team
- What makes a perfect team for a game startup?
- What roles exist within a game startup, and how do you balance them?
- How do personal and team motivations influence the growth of a game studio?
- How do you balance creativity and business?
This course teaches you about the people needed to form a game company, and keeping expectations in sync with reality. You will get theory and hands-on tips about team composition and team dynamics, applied to startups in the games industry. Most startups are small in size and generally are founded due to a shared passion for games. As an independent game developer, you are making a game and have to run a business at the same time, which is a huge challenge. There’s not one answer why some teams are successful, and why some fail. What makes a team successful is a complex set of variables, which we are going to dive into to help you on your way.
This course combines theory with experience, and provides you with practical examples through interviews with successful game studios. You see how studios formed their team and why it worked (or not), the influence that personalities have on the production, how they handle decision-making, and the balance of creativity vs business.
This course includes interviews with:
- Rami Ismail of Vlambeer (Ridiculous Fishing, Super Crate Box, Nuclear Throne)
- Joost van Dongen & Olivier Thijssen of Ronimo Games (Awesomenauts, Swords & Soldiers)
- Adriaan Jansen & Manuel Kerssemakers of Abbey Games (REUS, Renowned Explorers: International Society)
- Derk de Geus of Paladin Studios (Momonga, Mirage)
Who this course is for:
- Game developers who have just started their game studio
- Students who are planning to set up a game studio
- Anyone who wants to understand how to create effective and motivated teams in the games industry
Game Garden Academy is a portfolio of online video courses about game business for starting game developers and students. Game Garden Academy covers a range of topics that developers have to deal with today: marketing, PR, monetization, funding, publishing, team composition, and more. Speakers with years of experience in the video games industry share their expertise and give hands-on tips & tricks to up your game when it comes to entrepreneurship. Game Garden Academy focuses on providing practical examples and personal stories instead of dry statistics. With these courses, developers have a solid basis to do business in the volatile, ever-changing games industry.
Game Garden Academy is set up by Dutch Game Garden. We host the largest gamedev hub in the Netherlands, and have housed over 130 game companies. Besides providing studio space, we organize numerous events for the development community: talks, workshops, network activities, and showcases. We also provide advice, matchmaking, and a startup support program that helps promising game startups with individual coaching, workshops, and lectures.
Our mission is, simply put, to help game developers become more successful. We believe the games industry harbors incredible talent. Making a living and surviving as a company is extremely challenging, however. Since 2008, we have closely worked with over 75 game startups, earning a ton of valuable information about how game studios work, their strengths and their pitfalls. We’ve seen teams fail, we’ve seen teams become wildly successful, we’ve seen teams simply survive. From those experiences, there’s a lot of lessons learned that we’d like to share with you in these courses.
JP van Seventer is Managing Director at Dutch Game Garden, where he supported, coached and advised over 30 game companies including Vlambeer, Ronimo Games, and Abbey Games. JP has over a decade of experience in entertainment game development on PC, PlayStation, Wii and mobile platforms in the disciplines of design, art, and management as well as business development. He co-founded W!Games (i.e. Mistbound, My Horse and Me, Atari), a predecessor to Vanguard Games, and he has worked at Davilex Games (i.e. KnightRider), Overloaded (i.e. Fearfactor) and Lunagames (i.e. Subway, Fearfactor). He’s a member of the council at Creative Council Topsector Creatieve Industrie, an alumni member of the Dutch Game Awards jury, an alumni member of the GATE game research board of advisory and frequently speaks at events on the subjects of improving the business of game development and the growth and status of the Dutch games industry.
JP holds a bachelor degree in industrial design from the Design Academy Eindhoven, the Netherlands, and has studied Mechanical Engineering at Framingham State College, Massachusetts and Calvin College, Michigan USA.
Project Manager at Dutch Game Garden
Marilla Valente is project manager and educator and researcher at HKU University of the Arts Utrecht School of Games & Interaction. She has combined her background as an Organisational Psychologist (Msc) and certified trainer (Gordon Training International) in the educational and start-up field. Marilla has trained students and companies in Guyana, China, Denmark and the Netherlands. She is the bridge between research, education and the industry, having focused on topics such as behavioural science, innovation and growth in the creative industry, applied games, validation, game jams and teambuilding. Her international background and network provide her unique perspective in the games industry.
Marilla holds a Bsc (Honours) Applied Psychology from the University of Sussex, Uk and a Msc in Organisational Psychology from Utrecht University, NL.