Kw-logo-smaller

Dennis Presnell Interview (pg. 2)

Dorn - a computer graphic closeup of a hero from Baldur's Gate Dark Alliance 2.
Courtesy of Interplay

If you've ever wanted to get into the game business, 3D Game Artist, Dennis Presnell is dishing it up on what it takes, what it's like and what he does. Check it out!

Gary: How did you get into the business of making games?
Dennis: I took a risk and turned in an application to Interplay as a game tester. I was accepted so I took another big risk, quit my current job and took a lower-paying job as a game tester. I started as a tester and, after a little less than two years, became a senior level tester before I moved on to a designer internship at Black Isle. I had that for a few months and now, a few years later, I'm an artist at Black Isle.

Gary: Whoa, that's pretty risky to leave a good job like that. Okay, the big question is how much money do you make?
Dennis: It can be really low for entry level, depending on your experience level and skill. I started out at less than $30,000 US a year. As you gain more experience and skills, there are some artists in senior positions who earn as much as $80-90,000 US per year. Starting as a game tester I was making very little money, it's a job that doesn't pay much. I'm not absolutely positive what industry standard is for a mid-level artist.

Gary: What's it like working for a game company?
Dennis: This place is full of great people, but some of the strangest people that you'll ever meet. From outside the industry you might expect us to look or behave like the comic book guy from The Simpsons. There is a little bit of that, but most of the people in the game industry are just regular people who like games.

The game community is very small. Every company you go to, you'll know someone there. A lot of people at work are friends outside of work. The social scene is kind of like college or high school. It can be a really great place to work and it's really fun, but there's a lot of hard work.

Gary: Do you have any final words for the kids here at Kidzworld?
Dennis: If I had anything to say to kids I'd say, don't think the game biz is out of your reach. If you want to be in the game industry and you're willing to work, there is a place for you. If anyone out there is creative and likes to draw, don't let people tell you that there's no future in it. Keep your feet on the ground but don't turn off your imagination. It can be tough and there are long hours but it's a great place to work and you meet some really great people.

Thanks for chatting with me, Dennis! The game business seems like a really cool place to work, but it sure sounds like a lot more work than you'd expect though.

Related Stories:

  • Make-Up King Rick Baker
  • The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer
  • More Cool Jobs!
  • >
    >

    readers voted!

    Comments

    there are 0 comments

    Please login or register to add comments

    share with your friends


    Twitter Facebook Myspace Digg


    like this article?
    Sign up now to get more just like!

    latest videos

    What's your favorite TV Show?
    • Grey's Anatomy
    • America's Next Top Model
    • The Office
    • Lost

    related stories

    Dear Dish-It in the forums

    XxIHateMathxX
    XxIHateMathxX posted in Friends:
    I like Harry Potter too.  :)
    reply 30 minutes
    young fee
    young fee posted in Friends:
    I think you can not be sure he likes you. take me as an example theres this girl in my class who i talk to everyday. Now i see her as a sister and i have and will go to lengths just to make sure shes okay and her boyfriend doesnt hurt her. This might be what is happening in your situation so i advice that you wait a bit longer because him loooking at you may mean that he likes you and is waiting for the right time to tell you. Meanwhile you can get closer to him and flirt once in a while to asure that him you also like him (that is if he isnt sure). And dont worry if he doesnt like you back its better to have a friend who cares about you than a boyfriend who doesnt like you that much and is dreaming about someone else.
    reply about 1 hour
    heyitsangel
    heyitsangel posted in Style:
    Both
    reply about 9 hours
    InternetOwl
    What part of it are you scared of? Is it eating in public and around other people, or just eating in general?  What it might be, if it's eating in public you don't like, is social anxiety, or social phobia. You should ask your doctor to check, because if it is, they can offer you ways to help. For instance, they might recommend therapists or group sessions to help ease your fear.  Even if it's just a phobia or, in unlikelier circumstances, an eating disorder, you should still go to your doctor or a therapist so you can try to overcome it. Try doing things that calm you down before these situations as well, like exercise, reading or listening to music (I'm not sure what relaxes you but sometimes these help). Also, you should try to slowly get used to the situations. So don't force yourself to eat straight away when you're out, but slowly start doing so whenever your comfortable with doing so. Unlike your mum wants, you can't just "stop" being scared because that's not how it works.  But right now, please don't force yourself into any of these situations. It's not good for your mental health to be forced to face a phobia of yours often. 
    reply about 10 hours
    ElfyKathy
    Dear Dish-It, Within the last few years I have felt a bit sick and shaky when we go out to eat. It's not so bad when it's a carvery lunch or something at a pub, but settling down for a chocolate brownie and a milkshake shakes me up. Don't get me wrong, I love going out with Mum, but it's just sitting down and taking a bite. I want to chuck it in the bin. I love eating brownies and stuff at home and I'm pretty healthy. But I refuse to go to the town before lunch in fear. Mum told me I got to stop this or I'm going to develop a terrible phobia.  Please help! ElfyKathy, worried
    reply about 10 hours

    play online games

    Candy-100

    A great online version of the famous Candy Crush. This is the best game launched...

    1515_gl_kidzworld_100x100_jpg_fz

    Intriguing planets, weird and wonderful characters; challenge friends and find a...

    157262_(2)

    When you go back to Candyland, you’ll wonder why you ever left in the first plac...

    100x100_ra_logo_girl

    Uncle George has left you his farm, but unfortunately it’s in pretty bad shape. ...

    _thumb_100x100

    Shoot blobs with different properies to merge yellow blobs. Your blobs can be re...