What does a Product Manager do in a Game Studio?

AIE Alumni, Oscar Armstrong-Davies, is a seasoned Product Manager from one of the country's largest mobile game developers, Mighty Kingdom. With over seven years of invaluable experience under his belt, Oscar has contributed to and led in the development of more than a dozen games across a multitude of platforms including PC, Console, Mobile, and VR.

What does a Product Manager do?

Product managers play a crucial role in directing and shaping various aspects of game development, including core gameplay mechanics, visual aesthetics, and the overall user experience. Product Managers track measurable outcomes so useful skills include data analytics and being able to collect, interpret, and analyze relevant metrics.

Oscar explained that a product manager is responsible for the overall vision and direction of a product. They work with different teams such as designers and programmers to ensure that the product is on track and meets the needs of the stakeholders - players and clients.

Oscar detailed that there are differences between a product manager, a project manager and a producer. There can be some overlap between these roles, but typically a product manager is responsible for the what of a product, while a project manager is responsible for the how. A producer is responsible for the day-to-day tasks of running a project.

Oscar's path into games

Oscar's journey into game development began at the Academy of Interactive Entertainment (AIE), where he studied an Advanced Diploma of Professional Game Development, specialising in game design and production. Reflecting on his time, he comments about the AIE trainers, "having people (trainers) there that have that experience in the industry is really valuable and where some of my best learnings came from,".

For those aspiring to follow in his footsteps, Oscar emphasised how important it is to be able to work effectively within a team and collaborating on game projects. Oscar offered the following advice: "Make a real effort to try and learn everything you can about the other disciplines that are around you."

Below is a short clip of Oscar speaking to Matt and Alyssa.

>> You can get all of Oscar’s advice in the full livestream here!

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