From Game Journalist to Game Developer: What It’s Like – IGN Unfiltered

By Joseph Knoop

In the world of video games, it’s not uncommon to see a large amount of career shifting. Game designers turn into business executives, video editors become award-winning actors, and sometimes journalists become game developers themselves.

That’s exactly what happened to Joe Fielder, who worked at GameSpot as an editor throughout the 90’s. On this month’s episode of IGN Unfiltered, Fielder spoke with host Ryan McCaffrey on how the transition from journalist to developer panned out in a successful career helping to design games like BioShock Infinite and the new Underworld Ascendant.

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“Making games, it’s never boring.”

When asked what the biggest thing he’s learned in his years since jumping ship, Fielder gave not one, not two, but three colorful ways of describing game development.

“It is a tough process,” Fielder said. “It is a managed disaster throughout. It’s a series of putting out fires throughout, really making the best decisions possible. It’s tough. But it’s also really fun. Coming up with creative solutions to tough problems with time and manpower and whatnot while still managing to have everything come together in a fun way and innovate, man, it’s a really challenging system. Making games, it’s never boring.”

For more stories like this one, make sure to check out the complete episode of this month’s IGN Unfiltered above. Every month, host Ryan McCaffrey chats about the lives and behind-the-scenes details of some of gaming’s biggest names, including 3D Realms founder Scott Miller and Insomniac Games CEO Ted Price.

Joseph Knoop is a freelance writer for IGN. Follow him on Twitter @JosephKnoop.