In the United States, the video game designer salary is between $40,000 and $60,000 per year. Video game designers working in Canada can expect to be paid between C$34,103 ($25,136) and C$80,980 ($59,687) per annum. In the United Kingdom, professionals have a salary between £19,000 ($23,257) to £25,000 ($30,602), while in Australia they make between AU$42,000 ($30,204) and AU$78,799 ($56,667). Video game designers make between CHF18,792 ($18,270) and CHF 183,040 ($177,959) in Switzerland, and around NOK320,994 ($36,903) in Norway.
A video game designer salary may vary according to multiple factors, including demographic area, experience, state and the industry. According to a tenure report published on Recruiter.com, a game designer can earn as much as 10$ to 90$ dollars per hour in the United States.
As video game designer you will be in charge of creating game content. This may include writing plotlines, designing characters, creating a user interface, figuring out how players win or lose the game, and designing different backgrounds, maps, and scenarios.
Video Game Designer Salary Influencers
If you seek employment in this field, then you should know that the video game designer salary may vary depending on which industry you choose. Other factors that are associated with wage are experience, state and local policies.
For instance, if you are an entry-level video game designer, seeking employment in the Utility industry might bring you yearly earnings of $ 69,890. The Management of Companies and Enterprises industry occupies the second position as the most lucrative industry for video game designers, where candidates can earn up to $ 65,320 per year.
Real Estate and Rental and Leasing industry is the third most lucrative industry for video game designers, where they can earn as much as $62,250 per year.
Here are some industrial sectors to look out for if you want to become a video game designer because they have the lowest payment rates:
- Health Care & Social Assistance: $ 48,210/year;
- Wholesale Trade: $ 46,400/year;
- Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation: $45,190/year;
- Other Services: $41,650/year;
- Transportation and Warehousing: $40,580/year;
- Retail Trade: $32,350/year.
2. Geographic Area
Video Game Designer
Video Game Designer Salary in the US
A report published by online employment agency Sokanu places the salary of video game designer between $ 45,320 and $ 129,700 per year, with hourly wages between $ 40,98 and $ 62,36. As per median salary, a video game designer can earn $85,240 per year.
The geographic where you are currently established is considered one of the most import factors that influence the video game designer salary. The highest paying state in the United States of America is Columbia, where a video game designer can earn up to $115,030 per year, which means an hourly wage of $55,31.
Maryland is the second highest paying state, where a video game designer can earn up to $105,960, with an hourly wage of $50,94. The third place is occupied by Virginia, which ensures a payroll of $99,930 dollars per year, or $48,08 per hour.
Here are some other high paying states:
- Connecticut: $92,870/year, $44,65/hour;
- California: $91,630/year, $44,05/hour;
- Massachusetts: $91,200/year, $43,85/hour;
- New York: $88,610/year, $42,60/hour.
If you’re currently seeking employment as a video game designer, you should avoid these states because they have the lowest payment rate:
- Ohio: $35,370;
- Colorado: $31,730;
- Puerto Rico: $31,690;
- Arkansas: $28,320;
- Kentucky: $28,320;
- Delaware: $28,020;
- Nebraska: $23,590.
Video Game Designer Salary by State
|State||Annual Mean Wage ($)|
Video Game Designer Salary in Canada
PayScale reports that Canadian video game designers can earn a bonus of up to C$13,500 per year depending on their experience. As a result, the total pay for this profession in Canada ranges from 34,078 to 81,243 per annum.
Video Game Designer Salary in the UK
According to PayScale, video game designers in the UK can earn between £16,483 and £52,994 per year. However, with bonuses due to performance, experience and qualifications, professionals in this field can make up to £96,958 yearly.
Video Game Designer Salary in Australia
Australian video game designers work in a field that is continually evolving, and they have some of the most competitive salaries in the IT field. Yearly bonuses can reach up to AU$4,958, making the annual pay between AU$42,000 and AU$78,799.
Video Game Designer Salary in Switzerland
Video game designers in Switzerland fall under the category of web designer profession and their annual salary is between CHF 18,792 and CHF 183,040. As reported by PayScale, their median salary is CHF71,675.
Video Game Designer Salary in Norway
A professional in this field working in Norway earns an annual salary that can reach NOK320,994, the equivalent of $36,808.
Experience is another crucial factor which should be taken into account when calculating the video game designer salary. Moreover, other qualification might help you secure a job much easier. Based on the market’s reaction towards the gaming design industry, an employer may be more inclined to employ a candidate who has the following studies:
- Game design;
- Computer engineering;
- Computer science;
- Foreign languages;
- Humanity studies.
Note that while most employers accept candidates with a two-year bachelor programs, other may require university studies.
As a beginner game designer, based on the state you sought employment, you can earn as much $45,320 per year, or $21,70 per month. Junior designers earn about $64,550 per year or $31,03 per hour, while experienced video game designers can look at a yearly check of $85,240 per year or $40,98 per hour.
A senior game designer will earn $108,510 per year or $52,17 per month, and a top end video game designer will earn as much as $129,700 per year and $62,36 per hour.
Working Hours and Environment
Typically, a video game designer works 40 hours a week, which mean a 9-to-5 daily schedule. However, the working hours are not fixed, which means that you’ll most likely be able to negotiate the timetable with your employer.
Based on many employee surveys, a video game designer’s program can be sometimes chaotic, which most likely means that you might have to put in some overtime once in a while. Furthermore, many video game designers choose to work over the weekends in order to finish up on their weekly projects.
As far as the environment is concerned, you can either opt to work in a typical office, equipped with computers and monitors, or to work from home if you have the necessary technological equipment.
Because many video game designers tend to spend a lot of time on the chair looking at a computer monitor, they may develop back and eye-related medical issues. All in all, there are many benefits apart from the video game designer salary.
Bonuses and Benefits Packages
There are many benefits for working as a video game designer apart from the enticing salary. According to a report submitted by payscale.com, a video game designer can receive a yearly bonus ranging from $0 to $10,291.
Moreover, as work.chron.com points out, approximately 99 percent of video game designers receive a full medical insurance plan from their employers.
Presently, there are approximately 212,510 video game designers operating on the market. Market forecasts have predicted a 3.8 percent growth over the 2012-2022 timeframe. The fastest rate of employing video game designers belongs to the state of New Hampshire, with an estimate of 116,67 percent per year.
On the other end, the lowest rate of employment belongs to the state of Louisiana, with an estimate of -60,00 percent.
In the closing remarks, the video game designer is influenced by various factors. We should also state that there are many perks of seeking employment as a video game designer. In most states, the payroll is far above the sea level; the working hours can be openly negotiated with the employer, and the bonuses are substantial. As for job seeking rate, forecasts have predicted a steady growth over the following decade, which means that companies still require the advice and expertise of a talented video game designer. To get a complete overview of the field, we recommend reading about the web developer salary as well.