Monday, February 15, 2021

What it’s like to be a Game Developer Intern at a Multinational Gaming Studio?

Getting your very first internship and that too in a Game Development studio, without any prior knowledge of Game Development, seems arduous. For most people, it’s applying for the intern by going through a company’s website, but it was unlike in my case.

The Hunt begins...

In 2019, in the even semester of my sophomore year of engineering, like everyone else, I started my internship search. I heard and read the word rejected everywhere at one point.
I was feeling perturbed by my continuous rejections while bidding requests for multiple internship opportunities.

Opportunity knocks


Flyer of Student Tech Ambassador Call

In March, our University opened a program called the Student Tech Ambassadors, a joint venture of our University with Mages Studio, a Game development Studio in Singapore. I applied for this program and went for the first round of interviews. The first interview focussed more on personality and non- academic achievements. Being a highly active member of the Professionals societies like IEEE, I was able to impress my interviewer as they threw the ball in my court. I was shortlisted for the second round of interviews.

The second-round round was technical and pretty challenging; I was almost there, giving my first ever virtual interview, which took place right from their Singapore office.
I was asked questions on Big Data, Augmented Reality, and coding. I was somehow able to answer the majority of the problems posed.

The interview was over, and the interviewer said, “Virendra, thanks for your time, we will get back to you very soon!”

You are Selected!!

Initially, I was sceptical about my selection because some students had more experience working on technical projects and hackathons over me. Also, I had no prior experience in the field of Game Development.

RESULTS OUT: This made me think about how badly I had underrated myself.
There were no bounds to my happiness after hearing this news. I was overjoyed and took a breath of fulfillment after finally landing on my first internship.

Let’s make a Board game?!

The first day of my internship started with our orientation, making new friends, and knowing the culture of the company. I quickly bonded with my mentors, who happened to be the alumni of my university. I was able to adapt to the employee-friendly environment of Mages very quickly.

In the first week, we focused more on developing our approach for game development by doing brainstorming sessions and learning the dynamics of making a game enjoyable. We discovered an essential practice in the game development industry, i.e., The Game Design Document known as GDD, which briefs you about the whole idea and structure of a game in a concise manner.

The first morning of our second week started by allocating us our first group project. Our mentors asked to make a unique Physical Board Game by the end of the week.
It took one full day to plan the game; rigorous brainstorming sessions helped us know what a user wants while playing a game. We discussed our game with the mentors; after getting a go-ahead from them, we started working upon on the GDD and then the game. My teammate and I both were great fans of the popular fiction series, “Game of Thrones.” The storyline and theme of our game revolved around the famous characters and incidents of this series.


This project helped us know the nitty-gritty of making a game from scratch and understanding it from the point of customer experience and the rush behind completing a project under the given deadline. The project is now kept at my University’s design center as a showcase.

The Engines which don’t run on Petrol

In the third week, we commenced the hands-on experience with the technical tools. I was a novice in Game Programming but a manifest in OOPs. We started with the most popular game engine, Unity.
Unity being a C# based tool, I was able to learn it quickly owing to C# syntax being synonymous to that of C++ and C.
I was blown away by the fact that we can use object-oriented programming languages that we used to study as obscure concepts in class to give behavior and property to game objects!!  

I applied all basic concepts of inheritance, abstraction, encapsulation, and polymorphism learned in the classroom on the live game development projects here.

The Emerging/ Engrossing Technology: Augmented Reality

Yes, we learned Augmented Reality as well !!

My perception of this technology changed very quickly. I learned to work on this technology within four hours of me being introduced. Several myths were busted, I learned the art of wrapping my head quickly around things.

I learned to make, marker, and non-marker based AR applications using tools like Vuforia and Google AR Core.


I found making AR applications much more comfortable than making games.

Twists in the plot :p

During the internship, we were taught 3D modeling as well.  However, barring my fellow 3D modelers and designers from taking any offense, I found it nothing but grunt work. It's most unappealing and repetitive in nature. That drove me miles away from this work.

I used to lose my interest in the 3D modeling and went on to playing VR games located in the Design Center at my campus. I was more inclined towards Game Programming than the Game Arts.


We completed our eight-week-long internship. We got our completion letters personally signed by the CEO of the company. Our university was impressed by the projects we completed during the internship; they asked us to present our projects in the orientation session conducted for the freshers.

For a guy having stage-phobia, this opportunity didn't seem exciting at all. Even the thought of speaking in public used to send shivers down my spine; it used to leave me blank. You can only imagine the nightmare I must be going through to talk in front of 400 people in our university’s gigantic auditorium.

The D-Day arrived, this time I was prepared. I presented my six projects, including Games and AR applications, made during my internship. Sholay Adventures, a game reminiscent of the era of the 1970s filled with nostalgia for Iconic scenes from the Indian movie Sholay. The game comprised of one of the scenes rescuing Basanti. The animation portraying Basanti into a comical temptress got the crowd bursting in fits of hysterical laughter and 400 individuals hooting in unison!

With this, Basanti won hearts, and I conquered my stage fear.

Key Takeaways:

The internship gave me numerous learnings apart from fostering my technical skills.

The company's CEO, Ms. Neeru Bahl, used to visit and check every intern's progress weekly. She used to share her words of wisdom with us. Every line said by her was a nugget filled with immense knowledge, years of experience, and context. Those words weren't just quotes that sound good; they defined the rules of success, guidance that one would wait years to find. How can someone not cherish that?


A second bite at the Cherry:
Do you think the story ends here?
After one month, I received a call from Mages’ Singapore official that they are interested in extending my internship with a significant stipend. I signed the joining letter and became a part of the organization again! :)

I am thankful to my University for providing me this opportunity. Their efforts to give the students an exposure to dive in emerging technologies is commendable. People often complain about the outdated syllabus of our engineering, and institutes like IIIT Hyderabad are pioneering in AI specialization. To them, I say, The NorthCap University is no less!

About the writer:

Virendra Pratap is a final year student pursuing Computer Science Engineering at The NorthCap University, Gurugram.