Senior Game Designer

We are Snowed In Studios, and we have a bold vision to build a games industry hub in the National Capital Region. Part of the global Keywords Studios family, Snowed In Studios has been making games in Ottawa for more than ten years, and we’re looking for smart, experienced and exceptional entertainment professionals that want to help turn that vision into reality. 

Snowed In Studios are on the lookout for a senior game designer, mid-level if you have triple-A console and mobile experience and are looking to grow. We won’t count the actual years in your work profile. It’s the content of those years that counts the most. 

Player Attributes

  • Creative vision: You know how to build a world from scratch, the story, lore and depth behind it, and how to communicate that vision with a variety of artistic tools; pitching is in your DNA 
  • Creative director: You have led the design teams of console, PC and mobile titles, and Metacritic agrees with your design decisions 
  • Economy designer: Analytics and character/NPC stats are part of your regular vocabulary 
  • Product management: You know how to establish and prioritize and convince others about the features that will turn your idea into a reality. You know what makes a good player experience, and can constructively critique and guide in-development games to make them better. You can also guide a group in brainstorming a new title from the ground up, providing guidance on gameplay, art, tech, analytics, certification and legislation that affects your title 
  • Writer: GDDs are easy for you, but the real joy is in writing up the universe you create and its population 
  • Passion and Ambition: You have a thirst for knowledge and a passion for engaging entertainment experiences, gaming, technology and art. 
  • Tools of the designer trade: Knowledge of level design and character stat tools in engines such as Unity and Unreal; art tools such as 3DS Max, Maya, Adobe suite, Blender, Gimp and Zbrush; diagramming such as Visio, Lucidchart, etc. 
  • Leadership: That’s leadership, not management, and you know the difference. We want to hear how you serve artistic and technical teams to reach a common goal, and how you develop the individual potential of every team member 
  • Client Relations: We are a customer-driven organization, so you are comfortable with client-facing relationships and communications 
  • Communication: Speaking of communication, you have to be able to filter vast amounts of information into actionable items, while clearly keeping your team, your client and management informed of the changing situation 

Player Resonsibilities

  • Design features aligned with the creative and game directions  
  • Create and iterate on system designs before implementation 
  • Create readable and thorough documentation 
  • Communicate plans effectively to each team member 
  • Receive and implement feedback 
  • Adapt to technical and production constraints, reworking your design when and as often as needed. 
  • Work autonomously and independently 
  • Craft scenarios of intense emotion through systems or level design 
  • Learn new skills and knowledge quickly 
  • Identify client needs that you can fill 

Required Skills and Experience

  • 3+ years of leadership experience in game design, preferably leading a group of designers as design lead or creative director 
  • A portfolio of shipped titles outlining your expertise in writing GDDs, designing cameras, controls, characters, player/NPC stats, narrative, HUD and multiplayer 
  • 5 + years of game design experience, including shipped titles on console, PC and mobile 
  • Build, prioritize and maintain both simple and complex product backlogs 
  • Effective communication skills across all levels of a small studio and a multinational organization 
  • Experience using analytics packages 
  • In-game economy design 
  • Strong mediation and negotiation skills 
  • Exceptional attention to detail 

Bonus XP

  • Monetization design 
  • Post-secondary diploma or degree in a game development-related field 
  • Lead Producer, Design Team Lead or Creative Director Title 
  • Programming, design or artistic experience in a game production  
  • Scrum, CSPO 
  • Spreadsheet-fu  
  • EQ 
  • UX 
  • Requirements engineering 

What we offer

  • Autonomy 
  • Room to grow and the ability to set your career direction, both locally and in a global company 
  • Working with an amazing crew of diverse, talented humans on some of the coolest titles and projects, from small productions to some of the biggest triple-As on the planet 
  • Work in one of Ottawa’s hippest neighbourhoods, Hintonburg 
  • Work well, not long: enjoy Snowed In’s anti-crunch principles 
  • Versatile health benefits plan 
  • Flexible hours 
  • Strong sense of culture: feel like being part of a family! 

The Studio

Snowed in Studios is a game development studio based in Ottawa, Canada. As part of Keywords Studios’ engineering service line, we provide programming support to some of the most important and exciting games being made today. You’ll have the chance to make a global impact, working in a studio known for shipping some of the most prestigious household names in gaming.

At Snowed In Studios, we pride ourselves on delivering high quality solutions to difficult problems. Excellence in engineering is at the heart of who we are, what we offer and what sets us apart. This core part of our identity is what helps us get repeat business and grow through word of mouth.

Employee satisfaction is at the top of our priority list. We understand that you work your best when you’re happy.

We are looking for an experienced senior game designer who can fit into our culture. Are you a perfect fit? Let us know – we can’t wait to meet you.


If you think you’re a fit for this position, send us your info and we’ll be in touch!

We received your application, thank you!