Ahead of Melbourne International Games Week, Game Workers Unite have released the results of a survey showing that 35% of respondents get paid under the minimum wage for a games development position in Australia.
What is often bandied around as a dream job amongst the young game players of the world, may actually be anything but. The recent survey which had just over 150 respondents showed that, at least in Australia, there’s still a lot to be desired when it comes to game dev positions. Only 52% of those surveyed said they worked full-time hours and only 20% of games industry employees say that they have no concern for the future of their jobs. This concern seems justified because it has been found that 70% of the current employees in the industry have been there for less than 5 years, with only a select few managing to break the ten year mark.
All this information paints a grim picture of the industry, especially when you take into account the somewhat common knowledge of poor treatment of employees in the games industry. Poor treatment which includes a ton of unpaid overtime, crunch culture, and job instability. The exploitation of the games industry, and creative industry in general, has been a problem since its inception. Instead of having these problems fixed, people are often told they are industries that require passion and commitment. The job of a games developer is not an easy one, and the constant use and abuse of the workers are leading to them being burned out and leaving their passion behind.
If you are passionate about games development, make your voice heard, let developers and publishers know enough is enough, and show your support for not only the local industry but for the industry as a whole.