Video Games Careers in Hong Kong?
By J.A. Rueda
Why would highly-educated intelligent people choose to spent their careers making video games?
Video games are supposed to be a distraction, a waste of time, bad for you. In the colloquial lingo, a video game is automatically associated with a negative force that compels people to be irresponsible, lazy, perhaps violent, and video games and the associated corporations are responsible for many of today’s global problems. So some say.
While having such thoughts, people still play. People play for passing the time alone (horse betting, card games such as solitaire) or in a group (Mahjong, basketball, poker), or as a personal challenge (golf), or for camaraderie at work (softball, touch rugby), or for competitive reasons (amateur or professional sports), or to stay sharp (crossword puzzles, Sudoku), or learning a new language (many young people in Hong Kong learn Japanese through video games), or for the love of art (playing the violin), or to try to earn money (casino style gambling), or to belong to a cool group (Halo on the Xbox), or because everyone else is playing (Minecraft), teasing friends, being playful during courtship (young and new couples are silly playful), or to teach skills to a child, or because they have a smart phone (Angry Birds), or because their Facebook friends are playing (Farmville), or to earn a price (promotion games in convenience stores), etcetera. The list goes on and on. There are hundreds of reasons to play. Even if we deny it know in front of our peers or children because games are supposed to be wasteful, at one point in our lives, we all played with cards, toys, stones, balls, and our friends. Albert Einstein once said that great things come from the necessary “waste of time”. In other words, play is part of human development and a necessary activity.
If play is in big demand, there must be an opportunity to supply play professionally. The core component of a game is play. So, there should be an opportunity to make and sell games. How compelling is the opportunity? How relevant it is to Hong Kong youth?
Continue on the PDF VideoGamesDec2012 (download)
This invited article follows the talk by Dr. Rueda on August 29 in which he introduced the medium of the video game from a business case perspective and as an academic subject leading to viable careers. He provided an overview of the industry, history, key figures and drivers, government strategic initiatives from around the world, and case studies.