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New data reveals the best states to relaunch a career in game development after 2023's mass layoffs – Georgia ranks eighth

  • A new study has identified the top states for game developers to consider for their next role if workers want to have the highest income after essential spending 
  • The study analyzed data on annual salaries for a career in game development adjusted to consumer spending to reveal where is best to work in that field
  • Georgia game developers reported an annual salary of $120,797, which is 11% higher than the national average ($109,223)
  • GDC's new survey reveals over half of game developers are concerned about layoffs at their companies in the upcoming 12 months

(Special to – After a year of layoffs has left many game developers out of work, new data has revealed the states ranked highest for the most popular take-home earnings from the career for those hunting for a new job in 2024.

The research, pulled together by CSGO Gambling site, CSGOLuck, analyzed data on the average annual salaries offered in each state, compared to the average consumer spending, to identify where workers are best off focusing their efforts if they are happy to relocate.

According to the 2024 State of the Game Industry report, one-third (35%) of game developers have been impacted by layoffs – whether this is direct or from seeing others laid off – and over half (56%) expressed some level of concern that there will be layoffs at their company over the next year.

For workers who are already out of employment or might be in the near future and are looking for a fresh start, a move to Georgia should be on the cards as – when adjusted to consumer spending – a game developer's annual salary comes out at $120,797 – which is 11% higher than the national average wage ($109,223).

Idaho takes the lead as the best state to have the maximum money to spend on personal luxuries and savings at $135,559 – 24% above the national average. Following in second is Mississippi with $131,158, which is still 20% higher, while New Mexico is third at $126,287 – more than $15,000 (16% increase) higher.

The 10 highest-paying states for a career in game development

 StateAnnual Salary Adjusted to Consumer Spending ($)
3New Mexico$126,287
10New York$117,845

On the other end of the scale, Colorado offers the least disposable income, with an annual salary 19% below the US average at $88,383.

Closely behind is Florida, with a very slight improvement as the state's average salary – when adjusted to consumer spending – increases to $88,582. In third is Connecticut at $92,644, which is 15% below the national average.

The 10 lowest-paying states for a career in game development

 StateAnnual Salary Adjusted to Consumer Spending ($)
4New Hampshire$94,983
7North Carolina$96,683

While money isn't the first concern for all workers and many might not be in a position to be selective about where to take work, if workers can afford to be flexible on location, it is certainly worth considering a place that'll reduce financial hardship – especially in the current economic situation.

Commenting on the findings, a CSGOLuck spokesperson said: “No doubt a main appeal of game development is the fact that the career is adaptable to suit so many lifestyles, such as remote working or part-time hours.

“This flexibility naturally means there is plenty of competition when it comes to applying for roles, particularly in the areas that boast the highest salaries.

“But the top salary on paper doesn't necessarily mean game developers will be the best off financially – essential spending needs to be taken into consideration to determine how much extra cash they will have left to splash on whatever they please.

“If workers are hoping to have a luckier year filled with more holidays and treats, making a state such as Georgia their home should be on their 2024 bucket list.”

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By Zennie Abraham

Zennie Abraham is CEO of Zennie62Media, Inc., and a pioneer YouTube Vlogger at Zennie62 YouTube Channel. Subscribe to Zennie62 YouTube here:

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