Seeking Coder & Problem Solver for Unity Games
UPDATE: Thank you so much for your interest and passion in helping us do our weird mission, in this case, fixing Adam’s terrible code (and beyond). Lots of amazing apps!! If you submit an application after this point we can’t promise we’ll be able to look at it though. Thanks again!
Hello friends - Adam here, director and co-founder of Finji (Night in the Woods, Tunic, Overland, Canabalt, Feist, Panoramical, Hundreds). The time has come to finish our turn-based survival game Overland. I’m looking for someone who knows Unity’s quirks and can transform the tremendous mess I made into something bearable… and hopefully in the process find a new collaborator to join the Finji family and help us with our next generation of projects.
QUICK SUMMARY: this is a paid, full-time, programming contract with a duration of at least6 months but maybe forever. You will be writing C# in Unity, and your job will be to fix all the crimes I did in Overland, and hopefully work on other secret things too. Remote collaboration is fine. This is a work-for-hire gig that starts ASAP. Finji works with a diverse set of collaborators and applicants from under-represented groups are strongly encouraged to apply.
Read on for more info! </figure>
“What the heck is Overland?” We’ll get to the responsibilities and bullet points in a minute, but real quick, in case you’re not familiar: Overland is a turn-based strategy game that we’ve been working on in various capacities for about 4 years now. Players take care of a group of randomly-generated post-apocalyptic survivors who are on a road trip across the US. Think Walking Dead meets Oregon Trail, but most of the gameplay happens on these little chess-board dioramas. Players have to defend themselves from nameless creatures but also heal each other and scavenge for fuel, amongst other things.
It’s been nominated for some things already (including Best of Show at E3), and is currently in early-early access, with some 5000 players as of this posting. Our art director is @happydorid and the incredible soundtrack is by Jocelyn Reyes (who’s also doing sound fx). It’s a very good team! But Overland is our biggest and most ambitious project we’ve ever attempted and we need some help to get it from where it is now to where we want it to be at launch.
What You’d Be Working On I can’t list everything here, but we’re looking for someone to either rewrite or refactor or replace or invent the following systems:
- Core loop and life cycle
- Events and messages and actions
- Save and load
- Level generation
- Project organization
- File conventions and import scripts
- Shaders and weather fx
…and that’s just for starters. We need a solid Unity generalist who can just clean things up and solve problems in a game where we know mostly how everything works (it’s just the way it works now is untenable).
That’s for the next few months here as we get the game cleaned up. Beyond that you’d be working on finishing the game with us, and then maybe working on other internal and external projects with us, especially if Overland goes smoothly.
Some Things About Us The current team all work remotely - we’re based in Michigan, Texas, California, Canada, and Australia, amongst other places. We collaborate primarily via Slack, Github, and Asana. Finding a coder local to Grand Rapids, MI would be thrilling, but it’s far more important to us to find the right person in the wrong place than vice versa.
At this stage of the game (no pun intended - well, slight pun intended) a lot of the core creative decisions have already been made. Your role would be much more on the “fixing and implementation” side of things as opposed to a “making up new worlds” side of things. We’re not looking for someone to shoulder any blue-sky or major-creative-decision-making burden here.
We do video calls with the team twice a week where we go over what we’re working on next and why. You can read more about our studio practice and approach to collaboration here.
At the start, we’d pick out 1-2 weeks worth of programming tasks for you to try out, and after that trial period, talk about how things went, and make sure both sides want to continue. Pay would be hourly initially, but if you end up being the major contributor we’re looking for in the long term, there are some revenue sharing options also.
Some Things About You You’ve shipped at least two Unity games (even if they’re quite small). And you know Unity well - you know what it wants to do and what it doesn’t and how to structure things to not shake the boat too much. You’re a better programmer than I am. I won’t have to micromanage you, because you’ll be ahead of me anyways. You’re personally interested in working on games that try new things. You just plain like to solve problems. You like to tidy up. It’s important to you that all the things are in the right places.
You’re a good communicator. If someone asks you “Can we do x?” you usually answer in one of the following ways:
- “Sure! Put it on my list.”
- “Sure, but I’m not 100% sure why you would want this. Can you explain?”
- “Sure, it sounds cool. But it will cost X cycles. Are you sure?”
- “We can’t do that, but maybe we can do something else to address the same underlying need?”
When you don’t know how to do something, you research it and make a plan. Most of these plans are good, but you’re open to feedback and ideas from people outside your discipline. You clearly understand what problem we’re all trying to solve before getting to work on a detailed solution.
How to Contact Us We’re funneling all interested parties through a new email address, firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include the phrase “overland coder” in the subject line.
Even if you don’t have the longest resumé or the biggest portfolio, we’d still love to hear from you. We are looking for candidates that like to solve problems in creative ways and who are good at communicating and collaborating. In our …experience, experience doesn’t always imply those particular qualities.
We are looking for someone that knows Unity real dang good though.
This should also go without saying but Finji has hired POC, women, and students in the past and will continue to do so in the future. We strongly encourage applicants from under-represented backgrounds to apply for this job.