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When not to become a game designer, according to Diablo III lead Jay Wilson

In a new Gamasutra interview, Diablo III director Jay Wilson identifies exactly who shouldn't go into design -- and pinpoints exactly what he thinks a designer's job should be.
In a new Gamasutra interview, Diablo III director Jay Wilson identifies exactly who shouldn't go into design -- and pinpoints exactly what he thinks a designer's job should be. "And so a lot of the times I think you see people get into design because they have a lot of ideas and they think, 'If I'm the designer, then everybody just has to do my ideas.' And I would say if that's your reason to get into design, please don't go into design. That's a terrible direction to come from," says Wilson. "If anything, your goal as a designer should be, 'I can't wait to get somebody else's ideas into this game,' because you're not going to be the one making it. Your art team and your programming team are going to do a ton of the hands-on work. You're not even going to be able to work until they do their job." Strong, collaboration, he suggests, then, is the key to being an effective designer. "I think at times we can fall into the trap of being too separated by discipline, and it's actually something on the Diablo III team that we're working, right now, to make much better," Wilson says. When the team brainstorms ideas for a class, he says, "We get anywhere from 400 to 700 skill ideas. And there's a whole bunch of them that are awesome, but either aren't right for the class, or they aren't right for the game. That's the designer's job: to know the difference. It's not an artist or producer's job to know that. It's the designer's job to know that." The designer, then, is a filter of ideas: not necessarily someone who is a wellspring. The full interview, in which Wilson discusses his thoughts on crunch, the game's auction house, and "it's done when it's done", is live now on Gamasutra.

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