I met Roxanne Blouin-Payer through mutual friends.
I want to talk to her today because I know that she wanted to work in the video game industry for a long time and she did it. I think her background can inspire children, teenagers and students who aspire to join the industry.
This is the second part of the interview. The first part is available here!
Marc: What are the points you enjoy the most while working in the industry?
Roxanne: You can be yourself, dress the way you want and most of my colleagues share the same passions and hobbies as me. They are also jobs that are at the cutting edge of technology and that are constantly being renewed.
Marc: What are the negatives when working in the industry?
Roxanne: It’s a very popular environment with men, but more and more, it tends to diversify and women now occupy key roles within the studios.
Like other creative industries, it is also sometimes very competitive. Fortunately, I see constant improvement in the right direction to make the environment healthier. There is still work to be done, but I am hopeful that we will get there.
In some parts of the world, including Quebec, video game workers can hope for good job stability, since there are many studios hiring. However, as in other more specific industries, it is possible to have to move to find a job if you do not live in an area that contains a lot of studios.
Marc: What advice would you give to students who want to enter the industry?
Start experimenting with game machines as soon as possible, or level editors available with certain games. If you don’t feel skilled enough in certain aspects, you can ally yourself with other students who have different talents. Participating in game jams also allows you to make small games with a team in very intensive production over the space of a weekend. The important thing is to make contacts and fill in the portfolio! Be careful, most professionals already active in the industry are not interested in working with students. That is why I recommend that we make contacts among students from other disciplines, who will have less difficulty entering the industry once they have completed their studies.
Marc: What advice would you give to parents who want their children to play in moderation?
I don’t have children myself, but I have friends who have two little gamer boys and I liked their method. They plan in the week time slots to play and they clarify it with the child. These moments include a few hours, so that the child has time to progress well in the game. On the other hand, outside these time slots, they prefer other activities.
For my part, I also recommend avoiding screen time too close to bedtime, because it overexcited the brain and can lead to sleep problems (also true for adults)!
Do you have any other tips for parents who don’t know about video games?
It must be ensured that the content of the games that children experience is adapted to their age. Video games are a medium like cinema and there is content for all age groups. On most in-store purchasable games, there is an indicator on the box that shows which age group the game is aimed at. This label exists for all games, but sometimes you have to do some research to find it for games purchased online.
What are you playing at the moment?
I play a game called Monster Hunter Rise, on the Nintendo Switch. It is a game where the player hunts giant monsters in a whimsical universe.
Roxanne, on what social networks can we find you? Do you have any creations, sites to promote?
I’m not too much on social media, but you can find me on LinkedIn: