In the last few years, the gaming industry is creating positive turbulence across the globe with its fast-growing reach, especially after the COVID-19 pandemic hit us.
The growth in the gaming industry also leads to the invention of more and more games with exciting genres to provide a thrilling experience. Also, gaming development opening a lot of opportunities to many people.
Founded in 2001, Ecole Intuit Lab is a French educational institute of design, strategy, and digital creation which has a presence in India too and has an aim to nurture students’ creative outlook of the world.
In an interaction with BW Businessworld and BW Gaming World, Yan Garin, Country Head, and Director of Ecole Intuit Lab talked about the motive behind choosing India, digital transformation, strategy, innovations and more.
Q. How is École Intuit Lab encouraging a culture where creative minds get the freedom to innovate?
Ans- At École Intuit Lab, we have always endeavoured to move away from the traditional one-way and teacher-centric model of education. Instead, we insist that teachers should play the role of facilitators, mentors and guides who can help students to develop their own uniqueness. Students are brimming with potential, all they need is teachers to help them realise this untapped creativity, hence, we encourage students to ideate based on their own values and identity. In this way, we break away from the standardised model of education that was the norm in India and many other countries around the world. We want our education to be student-centric and this is why we like to think of our programmes as one big internship for students!
Q. What was the motive behind choosing India (Delhi and Mumbai)?
Ans- India has a huge and talented technical workforce that is adept at game developing, coding and other tech-based applications. It is the reason why several big gaming studios have opened offices in India. However, there is a gap when it comes to creative talent. Major creative work is still handled overseas in countries like Canada, France and the UK. We wanted to plug this gap and train Indian talent to be at par with their international counterparts. This was one of the main reasons why we decided to open campuses in India.
Creative arts, especially those under Design have been rapidly flourishing across India as education and potential career options for years now. While the growth in demand for design and visual communications as education pathways was primarily witnessed in Mumbai and Kolkata, we have been receiving immense demand from Delhi. Also, Delhi has emerged as a hub for design education, with related programmes that are ‘urban’ in character being offered to local students to be world-ready and in demand amongst renowned international enterprises.
Q. How will the collaboration help students who wish to pursue a career in design?
Ans- École Intuit Lab has a collaboration with Ubisoft which is one of the biggest video game companies in the world. This collaboration is extremely important to us because as leaders in the gaming business, they bring in industry expertise and help prepare our students for the actual job market. Together with Ubisoft, we design a curriculum that is practical and industry-oriented to give students a hands-on experience. The gaming industry is constantly changing because of the pace of technological advancements. However, games sometimes take years to develop, so it is extremely important that game developers keep track of market trends and not fall behind. This is why our collaboration with Ubisoft is so valuable for the students because it helps them to have a ringside view of the industry and its inner workings.
Q. Can you tell us about the future plans to open campuses in other cities as well?
Ans- Yes, as investors show interest in our work in the field of design education in India, we do plan to expand our campus presence. We can’t reveal much about this at the moment, but plans are definitely in the works.
Q. Do you think India is in a good place, as far as digital transformation, strategy, and innovations are concerned?
Ans- India has the second-highest number of internet users in the world. So a digital transformation is inevitable because the internet is omnipresent in India, this includes tier 2 and tier 3 areas. There is also an increase in digital literacy in many different sectors like agriculture that were previously untouched by the online revolution. One of the most novel phenomena in India is the system of jugaad (a flexible approach to problem-solving in an innovative way). It is a uniquely Indian way to always make things work because, at the end of the day, people in India are very interested in getting something to work no matter what the odds are; they always find a way to work around obstacles. This attitude has worked brilliantly for the country’s digital revolution.
Q. How do you see the gaming industry sector in India and its future?
Ans- India is one of the fastest-growing gaming markets in the world and the number of gamers continues to swell. In fact, during the pandemic, we saw newer demographics in terms of age, gender and socio-economic backgrounds entering the market. There was an increase in the number of middle-aged gamers (outside the 18-34 age bracket) and girls who were turning to game. And because of widespread internet access across urban and semi-urban areas, there was a clear uptick in gamers from low and middle-income backgrounds. India is thus an extremely dynamic market and no two years or even quarters are the same. This means that game developers need to constantly be ahead of the learning curve and be open to renewing their skills and knowledge.
Q. Is Indian gaming dominated by men? How can women break the glass ceiling in this sector?
Ans- Personally, I believe that the future of gaming is female! Increased female participation spells out a better future for the industry at large because it would mean more diverse games and overall democratization. For example, for the first time in the history of FIFA, FIFA 22 now lets you play as a woman in the Pro Clubs mod. Obviously, this is not enough and the gaming industry needs to do much more to become inclusive and break the traditional mould of it being a male bastion. But I believe change is coming; today, there is an increase in the number of female gamers and there are even gaming companies that are helmed by women.
Q. How does accelerated democratization affect the gaming industry?
Ans- As I mentioned in my answer above, accelerated democratization means more diversity in terms of games and game characters, and an eventual scenario of wider inclusivity.
Q. Do you think today people can take this as a full-time career?
Ans- Yes, absolutely. The gaming industry is poised to grow exponentially and career opportunities will be plentiful. Students should opt for a career in gaming if they are passionate about art and design, and inclined towards creativity. The gaming industry offers opportunities for students to grow and become professionals who are well-paid with high levels of job satisfaction.