On February 13, eight Ubigrads took over the Ubisoft Careers Facebook page to host a special Ask Me Anything session about the Ubisoft Graduate Program, and shared some insight on what it's like to get firsthand experience in game development at different Ubisoft studios around the world.
Below, you'll find some of the more popular questions and answers* from that session. If you're interested in applying you can do so here. Applications are due February 28.
*Answers edited for clarity.
What makes a successful applicant?
Venessa, Project Manager at Ubisoft Toronto: I feel the most important qualities are passion, drive, and preparedness for the interview. Most other aspects can be taught on the job (I'm still learning every day!). However, the best way to stand out is to be genuine. In all the ways that matter, you have to be yourself. I felt that the interviewers were very perceptive, and could tell who had a real passion for games and the industry as a whole. If that's you, don't be afraid to show it! Be yourself, and you will shine.
What was your experience with the interview process?
Amelia, Gameplay Programmer at Ubisoft Berlin: I had information between each step, and the answers were pretty fast, usually a week or two between steps, but it can change depending on the studios. Talking with multiple people across Ubisoft was really nice, and the test and interview made me feel comfortable. It was not only technical questions, but also discussions about my projects and my goals.
Do you have any tips for project management interviews?
Tiina, Project Manager at Redlynx: Industry knowledge is really important, so you should definitely prepare on that as much as you can. Also, knowing what project management is in the context of game development can definitely help you out, as well as being familiar with some of the tools that are used there. And, of course, don't be afraid to show your passion! It definitely is something that is looked for.
What advice do you have for standing out as a programmer, and what skills matter the most?
Khaliq, Gameplay Programmer at Ubisoft Singapore: Show your passion for making games and implementing features. That helps a lot. Having multiple published games also helps to make your resume shine.
You also need to be skilled in C++ programming, and to have software development skills (such as object-oriented programming and software design patterns) to develop game systems.
What does a typical day as a project manager look like?
Venessa: It can vary, but right now my day consists of supporting my team, making sure they're on track to deliver their tasks, meeting with various other teams about how we should move forward with specific mandates for the project, syncing with our teams in different studios around the world on their needs and requests, pushing next steps for action items and follow-ups, and attending reviews and feedback sessions.
What advice do you have for UX applicants?
Pablo, UX Designer at Ubisoft Barcelona: It's a program for people who have just graduated, so remember you're not expected to bring a lot of working experience to the table, but a potential for growth, tons of passion, and a strong base knowledge in UX. I would advise you to apply with a solid UX portfolio.
In addition, I think it is good to be familiar with Ubisoft games: play some of the latest games, analyze them in terms of UX, and do some research on the Ubisoft studio you're applying to.
Do you have any portfolio tips for UX Design?
Min Yee, UX Designer at Ubisoft Ubisoft Singapore: I would recommend providing detailed information on what you worked on for your projects. When it comes to UX design portfolios, showing the process that you went through to reach the final design stage is useful, as it allows the viewer to understand your thought process. Having examples of flow charts, wireframes, and mock-ups would be good too!
Thank you to everyone who joined in the conversation, and a special thanks to our amazing Ubigrads! If you'd like to be one of them, you've still got time to apply! Click here for more info.