Game Development

Former Microsoft executive J Allard on Game Industry Problem: Why Many Developers are Leaving?

By Muhammad Bilal Syahrir

In the modern era, some things happen so fast you won’t even realize. The same thing goes for the game industry problem. Many game developers leave the industry and move on to the other industry after only a few years. Why has this happened?


In the modern era, some things happen so fast you won’t even realize. The same thing goes for the game industry problem. Many game developers leave the industry after only a few years. Why has this happened?

Gamasutra recently posted a really interesting article where they interviewed a game industry icon. He is none other than former Microsoft executive J Allard.

Allard is known for his contribution to Microsoft’s Xbox. However, he left Microsoft in 2010 just after 3-7 years of his career in the game industry. Allard mentioned that one of the reasons why he left was because of the game industry problem.

The problem is basically game developers putting too much time and effort in the game industry without equal balance.

“While the team might work well together and find the work highly satisfying if the work/life balance isn’t healthy, they will naturally grow to resent the dynamic,” Allard stated.

Game Industry Problem

He also points out that game developers (especially programmers) can find a better and less heavy load job in other fields. This definitely will help developers create a balanced and healthy life.

Allard himself left Xbox and Microsoft despite being the icon for many years. Yes, his wage is uncountable, but now, he chooses to work and be chief of a bicycle tech company called Project 529.

Another reason why he left was that of the Microsoft company itself. Allard had a visionary goal in Kinect, Windows gaming, and VR. However, Microsoft had other ideas. The company demands it’s higher-ups to sell more Windows.

So, this leads to a conclusion that even someone in a very established company in a developed country chose to leave. Then how about Southeast Asia where the gaming industry is not like that of the US?

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It’s obviously more challenging for the Southeast Asian developers. However, nothing comes easy. There are a lot of possibilities and bright future for the gaming industry. So, for the developers out there, we hope this article makes you motivated rather than demotivated.

Edited by Devi

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