Jul 13, 2013

Valve Introduces Pipeline - Empowering Young Developers

Valve introduced a surprisingly cool initiative yesterday in the form of Pipeline, an effort to connect with a teenage audience hoping to pursue careers in the gaming industry. The program, introduced by Gabe Newell himself introduces the two separate aspects of Pipeline: Offering a place for teens in college to ask questions regarding careers in the video game industry and running an experiment to see whether a group of high school students with minimal work experience can be trained to be a viable part of the Valve system. Historically Valve has been described as the MIT of videogame companies, with a nearly abstract application process reserved for only the most gifted, skilled developers in the industry.

I've heard of students being taken straight out of college to work at Valve, but it seems like this program will truly encompass a guinea pig style method of determining if they should perhaps lower the bar of experience and allow a younger generation to become part of the studios workflow. Fun fact: While in college I saw some of my fellow classmates head to Valve for simply developing an indie game called Narbacular Drop, a puzzle game which went on to become Portal, and the next year Valve poached a team who experimented with paint based puzzle play, Tag to add new features into Portal 2. If you're interested in Pipeline, head on over to their website for more information.

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