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Aussie video games manager says bonjour to new role at Ubisoft

Nik Pantis is a successful video games producer from Melbourne, having worked on games like Warhammer Underworlds: Online, MMORPG Tycoon 2, Critter Clash, and Moving Out. The SAE graduate shares their path in the video games industry, and moving to Québec City, Canada to work at studio heavyweight, Ubisoft.
SAE graduate lands job at Ubisoft in Canada

“My experience to date has been in a production role, which is a mix of people and project management. At Ubisoft I head up small internal teams within the Québec City branch and communicate across the different studios. On many occasions there will be project members across different time zones, so it’s about managing that effectively,” Nik said.

Open-world action adventure series, Assassin’s Creed is one of Ubisoft’s signature titles, something which Nik is excited about being involved in.

“The Québec City studio is heavily involved in those games, so it’s such a great privilege to be working with some of the brightest creative minds in the industry.”
Ubisoft Québec

Moving to a new country and Québec City in particular, Nik has embraced the opportunity to learn the official language of the city, French.

“Since I accepted the role in September 2021, I began learning French through Duolingo. Now I’ve been doing weekly French lessons at Ubisoft, which has been beneficial and will make life a little easier.

“Even though business at Ubisoft is done in both English and French, over 70 per cent of Québecers speak the latter, so it’s important I learn the language to immerse myself in the culture.”

The opportunity at Ubisoft may not have come around, if Nik hadn’t applied for a different role initially.

“I applied for another job at the studio a while ago and got rejected very quickly. Their HR department said they’d keep my details on file and would be in touch if anything else came up. They then got in touch with me and said that they had a production manager position, and wondered if I was interested? Of course, it’s Ubisoft!”

Ubisoft Québec

Before the role at Ubisoft, Nik worked as a producer at Vectorstorm, Tin Man Games, SMG Studio, and Lumi Interactive.

“A lot of the projects that I’ve worked on at those studios have been about getting them from where they are to a finished product.

“At Lumi, we were shipping Critter Clash to Android and iOS, at Tin Man Games, it was Warhammer Underworlds: Online, which I took from the early access period to full release, and also released 12 DLC packs for it. At Vectorstorm, I was going through a similar process for MMORPG Tycoon 2 – getting it from early access to full release.”

Part of Nik’s education was at SAE Melbourne, studying Bachelor of Games Development and Game Design.

“The part that I enjoyed at SAE the most was the cross discipline collaboration - that has certainly helped me where I am today.”

“When I was doing my major project, I was encouraged to collaborate with students who were studying audio or design, and that’s exactly what you do in the real world. You have to learn how to get along with people who have different skill sets to yourself and navigate through any issues.”

One of Nik’s major career goals is to create games that leave a lasting impression on audiences, and make a difference to people’s lives.

“Impacting people’s lives is why I got into games. Initially I studied psychology, and I wanted to be a therapist for a long time. Bioshock was one of the games that made me rethink my life and what I wanted to do.

“If I wasn’t making video games, I would probably be making films – I want to be in that creative space where I tell stories and change lives.”

Person wearing a backwards cap coding on a computer

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