What’s it like to actually work at Epic Games?
We’ve all played video games. For some, probably even played more than enough for a few lifetimes. But what does it take to actually create one or work for a company who creates video games?
Headquartered in Cary, NC, Epic Games is an American video game and software developer that specializes in constructing and improving the Unreal Engine, a game engine that has powered highly profitable titles like Gears of War and Fortnite, among others. As of July 2020, the company was valued at over $17.8B.
Did we pique your interest? If so, you may be wondering, how do I work for Epic Games? In this guide, we will go over everything you need to know about Epic Games. Let’s get started…
The Meaning Behind Working at Epic Games
Being Epic means being a part of a team that continually strives to do right by our community and customers. Exceed your own expectations and level up at a place that raises the bar of engine and game development.
Who does Epic Games hire?
To get a better understanding of this, we’ll take a look at Epic Games departments:
ART focuses on creating and crafting characters that fill and star in the company’s content.
ENGINEERING focuses on building and enhancing technological storytelling with cutting-edge tools in computer graphics and simulations.
DESIGN focuses on the mechanics and construction of gameplay and how each interactive story is crafted for maximum emotional impact and user satisfaction.
PRODUCTION brings Art, Design, and Engineering together to work on specific projects that can be either polished products or heart-pounding experiences.
PUBLISHING focuses on promoting Epic Game’s products and experiences through Marketing, Sales, Community Management, and Customer Service.
BUSINESS/OPERATIONS focuses on managing and implementing new policies among the company’s staff through Human Resources, IT, Legal, Facilities, and others.
What Does an Epic Internship Entail?
Considering an internship at Epic Games? An average Epic Intern can make up to $6,000 a month! Of course that depends on what internship position you are hired for.
Epic Games offers various internships, which they call Epic Internships. These internships are diverse and can range in level and discipline across the game industry,such as:
- Software Engineer (Gameplay, UI, Graphics/Rendering, Physics, Mobile, Tools, Network, Audio)
- Game Design
- Tech Writing
These internships are geared for individuals beyond high school with a 0-3 years of formal working experience in either tech and gaming industries. This ranges from undergrad, grad student, PhD, and recent grads, as well as non-traditional higher education.
From their Intern program, you will work with industry professionals and can expect to work on real-world problems and challenging projects in gaming. Epic Games internships can range from 3-12 months, depending on the position. The gaming company also provides a competitive package for their interns that includes pay, relocation assistance and housing benefits. Epic Studios also offers additional perks like catered meals, memorable events, and lots of Epic swag.
Epic Games hires year-round, but if you see an opening, we suggest applying as soon as possible, as their internships are competitive and they fill their positions as soon as they find the best match. To get a better understanding of job postings, Epic Games says to follow this:
- Summer Internships: September - March Recruiting, hires hear back by March
- Fall Co-ops: May - August Recruiting, hires hear back by August
- Spring Co-ops: September - December Recruiting, hires hear back by December
Epic Games finds candidates usually by visiting various universities and higher education programs, big and small, that contribute to the 3D graphics and gaming communities. With COVID-19 and social distancing rules in effect, most recruiting activities will be done online, so we suggest checking back on Epic Games website here. They do take applications online and do advise people to apply online if they don’t visit your school.
How to Get a Job at Epic Games
Epic Games is an epic company with many available positions at any given time. With offices across America and the globe, and open positions across all departments, the options are limitless. You can check out and apply to their open roles here.
The first step of the Epic Games hiring process involves submitting your resume. For artistic or level roles, a portfolio must also be submitted. Epic Games uses an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) called Workday to scan and filter for the best resumes, so it’s important to make sure your resume is ATS-optimized. Purchase our Resume Optimization Playbook before applying to make sure your resume will make it to a recruiter.
If your resume makes it to the next round, you will then be asked to take part in a quick phone screening with HR. If approved, you will typically then be moved on to the next round of interviews, usually via video call, or assigned a skills test. Skills tests vary by role, but they are usually given in the form of at-home assignments. They are usually simple, but time-consuming. For Software Engineers, the assignment involves (2) programming questions, (1) design question, and (1) puzzle question, and you can expect to spend 5 to 7 hours up front.
If you pass the skills test and/or the second round interview, you are then asked for an on-site interview before references are called and a decision is made. The entire hiring process, from application to hire, usually takes anywhere from two weeks to over a month.
Some Epic Interview Questions
We’ve collected a list of interview questions previously asked by the Epic hiring team for various roles to help you better prepare for the hiring process.
- What is your experience?
- What do you know about Epic Games?
- Why do you want to work at Epic Games?
- Do you play Fortnite? Do you play any games?
- How would you build a community around this product?
- Do you have any experience building communities from the ground up?
- What is your experience with [product]?
- How would you position [product] differently than [competitive product]?
- If you could change the name of [product] what would you change it to, and why?
- What do you think about the fact we don’t release patch notes?
- How would you communicate differently with players and with developers?
- What experience do you have in HTML5/CSS#? Give an example of how you have used these technologies.
- What is your level design process? How do you go from idea to finished product?
- Which aspect of level design really drives you? Is it gameplay? Visuals? Single player or multiplayer?
- What works in the games you are playing right now and what doesn’t?
IT Systems Engineer
- What is the difference between a Zombie process and Orphaned process in Linux?
- How can you tell where VLAN traffic is destined for by examining packets
- Where do you go for Information Security news?
- Have you ever worked on Unreal Engine?
- Questions about scripting languages and batch files
- What's the difference between different data structures, e.g. list, array, hash table?
- When would you not use a virtual destructor?
- How is a virtual function implemented?
- Technical questions about different systems within Unreal
- Other algorithm questions and technical questions
- What aspects of Fortnite do you think are good UX and which are bad UX?
The Benefits of Working at Epic Games
The benefits offered to employees at Epic Games include 100% coverage of health insurance, medical, dental, and vision, profit sharing, free catered lunch, a stocked snack closet, a gaming area for when Epic workers need a break, and unlimited vacation. Pay is competitive and the company also participates in profit sharing, so when the company does well, employees get rewarded. Both former and current employees also praise the opportunities for career development and growth within the company.
Other Things to Consider…
Although the benefits are great, working at Epic Games is not for the faint of heart. Hours can be long and intense, especially in preparation for a game launch. This phenomenon is common in the gaming industry, but still something to be aware of, and is often referred to as “crunch culture”.
Before sending in your resume, make sure your resume is up to date and showcases only the most relevant projects and experience for the role you’re applying to. Be sure that there's a clear understanding of your involvement in the projects you’ve done, and be ready to talk in detail about anything you list on your resume.
The #1 thing Epic Games looks for in potential candidates is passion. This is best demonstrated through extracurricular activities and internships having to do with the gaming industry. Highlight any hobby projects or work you have done.
If including a portfolio in your application, its objective should be to grab attention. Only display your best and most interesting work. Also, make sure to credit appropriately for any work you did only a specific aspect.
To ensure a good fit with the company, interviews are often with multiple employees and can take an entire day. Be ready to talk with a lot of people and lastly, don’t be afraid to ask questions. This will show them how interested you are and that you were actively listening.
Want to Apply to Epic Games?
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