A Day In The Life of a Game Production Intern

My Role

This fall, I decided to embrace the opportunity of distant game studios offering remote internships as a result of the pandemic. I took on the role of a Game Production Intern for Jam City’s San Francisco studio, all while living and taking classes in Burlington, Vermont. As a member of the Production team for both Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery and Panda Pop, my main responsibilities included creating tasks based on documentation, organizing and updating new documentation, organizing visuals within slide decks for internal use, and keeping up with the art departments within the development teams to make sure I was supporting them as best as possible with their technology and task information. Being in a role that involves so much communication while being remote had a unique set of challenges, but since they became a remote studio during the pandemic, Jam City facilitated all the resources necessary in order to be a successful member of the Production team while living on the opposite side of the country. 

The Day to Day

Working on two separate titles and teams meant that my week looked very different from other producers or developers. My week was split in half, so I devoted half of my time to Panda Pop and the other half to Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, whereas most members of the studio devoted their entire week to one project. My workday wasn’t always a 9–5 either. Being in Vermont and working for a California studio meant adapting my working hours to fit the schedules of my team. This worked out to my benefit as a student. Most days, I had my classes in the morning, so when I was done, I had the freedom to start my workday at the same time as my team and end with them too, even if it meant ending my shift at 8 p.m.

Keeping In Touch

You’d think that communication might be a weak point when it comes to working remotely, but resources like Slack messaging and Google Meet made my lonely dorm room feel like a real coworking space. I regularly had meetings for standups, our daily check-ins, as well as syncs, or quick chats, with managers and coworkers to get updates on my tasks for the day. Slack also served as a really useful tool to organize teams or chat with people on projects without having to schedule a meeting during the day. These communication tools really made the studio feel connected, even when we were all spread apart in our separate remote workspaces across the nation. 

Productivity

When working alone in my dorm, it was up to my own work ethic and accountability to remain productive in my remote workspace. In the year and a half of remote learning that I experienced with Champlain College, I was able to develop some great productivity habits that I carried with me to this internship. I’ve found that catering to my environmental needs does wonders. Creating a workspace that I enjoyed, with a well decorated desk, comfy chair, and pleasing lighting, allowed me to stay focused while working in my dorm room. It also helped to treat myself to an iced coffee so I could stay energized!

Reflection

My time with Jam City allowed me to revisit my favorite parts of working remotely with brand new teams, goals, and awesome projects that kept me motivated. Jam City’s ability to expand industry opportunities to students across the country has made a future in the game industry feel infinitely more attainable. I admire how the studio has embraced the benefits of remote working after the bulk of the pandemic and continued to use this model to expand opportunities and keep employees safe and satisfied. 

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Written by Katherine Townsend ‘23 // Game Art & Animation

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