Games are my hobby. But I’ll admit to dreaming about making games my career. I daresay that some of you have as well. As the saying goes, do what you love and you’ll love what you do.

Well, believe it or not, it is possible. A survey of game companies reveals a number of available positions. However, it also reveals a number of important facts to consider. Career employment-type positions are rare and are generally concentrated in customer service, marketing, support services such as accounting and information technology, and production. Development jobs, though they are generally found in-house, are rarer still. Design and graphic illustration, however—the type of work you might think about first when you imagine creating games—are more often left to independent contractors or freelancers (which, hopefully, we’ll cover at a later time). Also, don’t expect to find a wealth of opportunities or high-paying positions—Hasbro and Mattel CEO positions being the exception on the latter. Finally, though you may be interested because you enjoy playing games, the companies who are recruiting expect their employees to take the jobs seriously. They are looking for people with specific skills and experience, and in most cases require successful candidates to relocate.

So, if you’re still interested, this is some of what you can find available right now:

  • Steve Jackson Games is looking for a Production Assistant and a Perl Coder.
  • Fantasy Flight Games is recruiting for a Senior Roleplaying Game Developer.
  • Paizo Publishing has opportunities for a Customer Service Representative, Warehouse Personnel, a Software Developer, and a Copy Editor.
  • “Intern” positions are available at Kenzer & Company. From the description, this appears to be warehouse order processing, but it’s unclear whether or not the positions are paid.
  • At Privateer Press there are jobs for Linux Administrator and Packing/Shipping.
  • Positions at Upper Deck include Financial Analyst, Designer (Entertainment), Lead Artist, Associate Game Designer (WOW Miniatures), Senior Software Engineer, Senior Systems Engineer, Technical Support Specialist, Web Designer/Developer, and Director of Direct Response Marketing.
  • In the UK, Games Workshop has positions available in retail sales support and management. In the United States, opportunities include retail, as well as Administrative Assistant, HR Director, and Trade Account Manager.
  • Wizards of the Coast, a subsidiary of Hasbro, is recruiting for UI Architect, Software Development Manager, Software Developer, Bilingual Graphic Designer, Game Brand Developer (Japan), and Administrative Assistant.
  • The rest of Hasbro is recruiting for 30 open positions, including 5 in accounting/finance, 5 in engineering, and 4 in graphic arts & design.
  • At Mattel, there are opportunities for Interns in Design/Development and career positions as a Senior Marketing Associate, a Senior Security Investigator, and Senior Financial Analyst.
  • Ravensburger is looking for a Press Advisor, Planning Engineer, Product Manager, and Technical Product Developer/Manufacturer (at least that’s how Babel Fish translates it).