My second semester as a Game Design Intern at C4M Prod has been a truly eye-opening experience. I will walk away from this semester with the confidence and knowledge that can only be gained from the hands-on experience an internship can provide, and C4M Prod was not an ordinary internship. The responsibilities I was given far exceeded my expectations from last semester and only further increased during my second semester at the company. With a whole semester of experience behind us, the expectations and level of trust were higher than ever. High expectations meant high pressure, but putting the work in also meant high reward for doing so. I’ve gained a whole new respect for every member of the C4M team and for indie developers in general. With just a few incredibly talented individuals, we have not only been able to maintain a popular IP game (Tekken Card Tournament), but also to create something we can truly call our own (Battleplans).
When I first began my work at C4M, my boss Mathieu told me that once I had gained the full trust and respect of the team, the rewards and responsibilities would be clear. About halfway through the spring semester, I felt that this time had finally come. I was given almost complete control to handle the balancing and community management for C4M’s largest game, Tekken Card Tournament. A game with over 10 million downloads and with hundreds of thousands of active players, this was not a responsibility that would be given lightly. A mistake in balance or poor management could have catastrophic repercussions, and yet here I am. After successfully pushing my first independently-created Balance Update, I can remember Mathieu telling me on a walk home “I told you it would happen! I told you the trust would come!” In the weeks to follow, in addition to my others duties, I would design a completely new League system for the next version of TCT.
What really formed my attachment to C4M, however, was the studio’s upcoming original IP, Battleplans. During my fall semester, most of my time was spent working on TCT. This semester I have had more opportunities to work on Battleplans, which has been truly amazing. While I have worked primarily as a Level Designer on the project, the company’s small size means that all members get their input recognized when it comes to making large design decisions. As the months have gone by, I’ve noticed myself getting seriously invested in the success of this game. We were all so excited when we got a chance to show off Battleplans at the Montreal Independent Games Festival in March. It was an unexpected confidence booster when Battleplans was recognized as a runner-up for the reward of “Best Game Design”. We all felt that Battleplans was something special, but it really raised morale to get that sort of confirmation.
I’ve seen motivation from all of C4M’s members, but particularly my boss Mathieu. The excitement, energy,and raw passion he shows towards game development is infectious. It’s that attitude that has caused me to just sit back in my chair and think “I’m getting paid to make video games!” It’s that attitude that has made me realize that the kind of company I want to work at is one where it’s just a bunch of guys and girls who want nothing more than to make something awesome! A group of people that isn’t afraid to fail, and that isn’t afraid to make something risky for the sake of creativity. I’ve worked with some amazing people, made some fantastic friends, and created something that we all hope is truly extraordinary.
– Sean Pennell, Game Design Major, Spring 2015