I’ve been working on The Witness for a bit more than a year. So, I thought it might be a good time to write a bit about my experience so far, in the hope of attracting some talent to join us.
I have to admit that I had many doubts about coming to work at Thekla. I had a comfortable and stable job at NVIDIA, where I was held in high regard. The prospect of joining a small indie studio certainly seemed a lot more uncertain. However, Jon’s confidence in the game he was designing, and in his ability to support a small team during its development was very reassuring.
Work conditions at Thekla match or exceed those at my previous employments. Compensation is competitive and the work environment is extremely flexible. Jon has very high respect for our time and personal needs, I’m sure he would go an extra mile to make sure you are satisfied as well. There are also unusual perks that you would not get anywhere else in the industry.
Not only the benefits are great, but I in addition to that, I get to work on the stuff that I really enjoy. That’s not just the global illumination implementation that I’ve been writing about, but also many other interesting problems in my areas of interest (mesh cleanup, parameterization, optimization, simplification, exporters, image filtering, compression, etc). I get to design our whole production pipeline; how the game, the editor and the modeling tools integrate with each other. I architect and implement most of the engine; its rendering pipeline, the level of detail and streaming systems, the platform abstractions, etc.
I think that we currently have a good foundation. Our main focus has been on quick prototyping. As the codebase became more complex I’ve tried to get things better organized, while still retaining our quick iteration times. Our builds are blazing fast, and the loading times are still fairly quick. The code is also designed to make it easy to prototype new gameplay elements, and while the rendering code has become more rigid, it’s still pretty easy to experiment and add new visual effects.
There’s still plenty of work left to be done, which is why we need an extra hand. The game needs lots of polishing and some optimizations. There are still a few gameplay elements that need to be prototyped, and as we ramp up into production we will probably face unforeseen problems that will need to be addressed. We also plan to port the game to other platforms, some of which might require significant reengineering.
However, for me, this job is not only attractive just because I get to work on cool and challenging problems. The Witness is a game unlike any other. It’s a unique creative opportunity. It’s an opportunity to use my skills to make a difference. To make something unique and valuable. To influence people in positive and meaningful ways.
As you can tell, I’m very excited to be part of it. If you would too, or you just want to learn more, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us!