Attitudes in China regarding console game development are rapidly evolving. One major catalyst has been the establishment of Ubisoft's Shanghai facility, and other companies like CCP are following suit, bringing main development hubs to a region once primarily considered largely for outsourcing.
This means that many Chinese are considering game development as a career for the first time -- and it's interestingly the hardcore enthusiast market in the region that will become its early development community.
Speaking to Gamasutra in today's feature
about CCP Asia's development of EVE Online
tie-in Dust 514
, the studio's Larry Herring explains, "We've got one guy that works with us -- he's somebody else that I've known for a long time. He's got a degree in traditional Chinese medicine. He's a brilliant artist. You know what I'm saying."
And it's a common occurrence, Herring says: "We've got guys that have had degrees in all different kinds of disciplines."
In fact, it was the case for Dust 514
lead level designer Jing Yu Zhu: "I didn't get my game degree," he says. "I [got] a communications information masters degree. I started video game development. That disappointed my parents a bit."
However, as video games proliferate in the region, Yu Zhu says his parents now understand and appreciate his work. Many other Chinese who grow up as voracious gamers may pursue similar careers, creating a backbone for the industry there.
"Oh, by the way, there's a hell of a lot of people here, so even if it's a small percentage, it's a lot of people," says Herring.
Today's Gamasutra feature explores the establishment of CCP Asia
and the development of Dust 514
from two unique perspectives: That of the Western-native Herring and the locally-grown talent Yu Zhu.