Teamwork is undeniably the key factor in achieving large goals in a small amount of time. Game development can benefit heavily from properly synchronized teamwork. Mainly because games are such large projects that can take years to be completed. Be it small indie games or super popular AAA titles, all these game development studios have dozens of employees. Developing a game is not just about using the best game engine, writing code and troubleshooting bugs, it requires a really diverse set of skills that can capture the audience’s imagination. This is where teamwork becomes very important as one person may not possess all the necessary skills needed for game development. Let us examine these reasons in more detail.
Decreases the pressure & increases productivity
One of the main and obvious importance of teamwork in game development is the division of labor. The uniform division of labor ensures no member has to overwork, increasing productivity & performance from those members. This leads to creating a much more refined and beautiful game while preventing crunching and maintaining a proper framework for development.
Saves time for you
Finishing the game on time is really important. The hype for games dies off pretty quickly and delays can anger the players & hurt the reputation of a game studio. Let us suppose it takes 3 years for a team of two to complete a game from scratch. Naturally, a team of four can finish that same game about twice as fast.
Take Cyberpunk 2077, the game was originally scheduled to be released in April 2020 but its release was delayed to September 2020. The game was further delayed again to correspond with the release of the new generation consoles; the PS5 and Xbox Series X. Now that the release date of new-gen consoles is almost here, the game has been delayed until December 2020. Repeated delays like this can kill the hype for the game. While Cyberpunk 2077 has good reasons for delaying, not many other studios follow the same principle.
Motivates each other to push even harder
When game developers work in a team, they start to associate themselves with the game personally. After all, they have invested a lot of time & effort in it. You can even see the personality of the developers in the game. This motivates the team members to perform better as a collaborative force and become more dedicated to the project.
When you work on a game all by yourself, it can become straightforward to lose the motivation required to move forward and stay committed to the game. Working in a team is entirely different from working alone. The team members become a source of motivation for each other. If a person is doing exceptionally well at their assigned job, others will also aspire to catch up. This loop of constructive competitiveness is a major drive force for team members.
Synergy is the combined effort of all the team members towards reaching a common goal. When team members visualize the same objectives, they can share their perceptions, knowledge, and ideas to improve the final result. A game development studio has various departments such as environment creation, game mechanics, movements, character creation combat. When people from all these various departments visualize the same outcome, the whole game development team attains a synchronization state. For example, team members can solve problems far more quickly and easily, which increases the team’s overall efficiency. Sometimes when you are working on a game, there seems to be no way around a pesky bug. At times like this, talking about the issue with your teammates can open up the floor to new perspectives.
Diversified skills & experience
It is obvious that game development needs a lot of different skills and it is nearly impossible for a single individual to excel at all of them. A game development team consists of different kinds of professionals who are responsible for specific tasks. Some people specialize in story-writing, some in UI design, some in environment creation, some in sound effects, etc. When all these experts work in sync with each other, the quality of the result improves dramatically.
Leaders can keep the project on its track
Every team has a leader and that leader is one of the most important components of the team. A good leader can inspire their teammates to bring out the best in them and sustain their motivation. Without someone on the front to direct everyone and urge the team to work properly, deadlines can be difficult to meet, disputes might arise, synergy might be disrupted and a lack of morale can demotivate the team. Therefore, proper leadership is another vital aspect of teamwork in game development. While teamwork is one of the most important aspects of game development, it is sometimes better to keep in mind the drawbacks of teamwork too. A bad team can kill the enthusiasm out of a motivated individual.
A team with good synergy understands the game is the final result but the devil is in the details. While most of the teammates can agree on the basic things such as combat, movements, and character designs, it is the details where team members start having disagreements. When it comes to gaming, there isn’t an absolute right or wrong way of doing things. Different people have different preferences according to their gaming experiences and disagreements will always arise when working on the details. However, This can be easily solved with good leadership and keeping the overall taste and preferences of the target audience in mind.
There is no doubt that teamwork is necessary for the success of a game. It saves the studio a lot of time and brings all these exceptional minds together to operate as a whole. Time and time again games like No Man’s Sky have proved that a dedicated and motivated team can bring a game back from the brink of being a complete disaster. Poor teamwork has been the cause of making or breaking a game, whereas good teamwork has brought redemption to previously failed games. These games that have redeemed themselves in the eyes of the gaming community are a testament to how important teamwork is in game development.