Economy Designer

At the heart of so many successful games is the production, trade, and consumption of valuable resources. It might not always be money, but if you can count the items numerically, then it's more than likely considered a game economy.

These economies can help monetise the game or can simply heighten the gratification of gameplay by rewarding resourceful and strategic playing. Economy Designers are the brains that design how these currencies in games, often utilising knowledge of real-life economic principles.

Experience in game design and/or theory is not essential but will help you appreciate what techniques make a game enjoyable. Strong econometrics and maths skills and a passion for spreadsheets, statistics, data and science will also come in handy.

Also referred to as:

Monetisation Designer, Free to Play Designer

You’ll love this role if you’re into:
  • Coding
  • Maths
  • Designing things

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Many Economy Designers have a degree, which provides professional development and a recognised qualification to employers. However, there are many available pathways and all people working in games claim a unique career journey. Above all, you will need to demonstrate passion and skills in your chosen field. For this job role, you should be someone who loves designing things, creative problem-solving and collaborating with others.

As a professional, you’ll be designing currencies within the game, from deciding how much something is worth to how items are traded. You will have a strong knowledge of economics, game theory and gameplay. Game trades can be monetised so understanding how games of different genres, platforms or business models monetise their games will help you create and drive this secondary market for the studio.

You will have a strong understanding of data science and have experience using database software like SQL and Excel. We recommend using our tool picker to help you choose the right ones for your current level and purpose. 

Working in the games industry is highly competitive and you’ll need to make sure your portfolio (a collection of your best work) stands out to employers and course leaders.

As an Economy Designer, your work should showcase game economies you’ve designed. You should demonstrate a range of technical skills and an understanding of fundamental game-design principles. For more ideas, see our top tips page on building your portfolio.

Whatever role you are working in, it is essential that you understand the game making process. You can head to our build a game section for first steps; join a regular game jam to build up your skills and network; or start modding others games to gain experience. 

Education pathways

Where are you in your games journey?

I enjoy giving feedback on new art that's added to the game or learning more about the game development process
Harry Ashton - Junior Economy Designer, Neon PlayRead the full story
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