XR Programmer

XR stands for Extended Reality, an umbrella term for technology-driven altered reality that includes Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR) and Mixed Reality (MR).

VR has heightened the gaming experience by providing another level of immersive engagement. VR Games take players beyond the screen and transport them to whole new worlds. 

As its ability to open new doors, new technology can also provide complex obstacles. As an XR Programmer you will enjoy a challenge, asking difficult questions and experimenting with cutting edge hardware and software to develop novel immersive games and experiences. 

Similar to all programmer roles, you will be identifying and fixing bugs in existing scripts, finding ways to get more out of the game engine and writing code to create new features. You will need to learn how to communicate ideas and collaborate with artists and designers.

Also referred to as:

VR Programmer

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

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Many XR Programmers 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 experimenting with new technologies and communicating ideas with others. 

As a professional having a wide range of coding expertise is important. C# and C/C++ are commonly regarded as the top programming languages for XR development. You must also be familiar with major game engines like Unity and Unreal Engine that support most XR devices. We recommend using our tool picker to help you choose the right ones for your current level and purpose.

And check out our guide to programming languages for more information.

Working in the games industry is highly competitive and you’ll need to make sure your portfolio stands out to employers and course leaders. As an XR Programmer, your portfolio should outline previous experience, demonstrating a range of programming skills and achievements. 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?

Don’t ever think you can’t do something, because you can, you just need to be disciplined and motivated and you’ll get there.
Harrison Perry - XR Programmer, Make RealRead the full story
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