Skip to main content

Pressing Play – looking back at Metacore’s first trainee program

Metacorex Pride blog cover
Metacore logo

Metacore’s first trainee program, Press Play, began in September 2022 with six up-and-coming gaming professionals joining the vibrant game studio. Now, at the end of the program, we caught up with Game Artist Hy Bui, and Game Programmer Aleksi Laine to talk about what surprised them at Metacore and get their advice for future Press Play stars on applying to the program.

Metacore blog image Hy Aleksi

Learning the ins and outs of the mobile game industry

Before Hy joined Metacore, she studied Media and Arts with a minor in Game Design at university but the program was her first work experience in the mobile game industry. Based on what she had heard from her friends in other companies, Hy expected the traineeship to be filled with performing different tasks and waiting for the next one. Therefore, she was pleasantly surprised to find how thoroughly the program covered different aspects of the mobile game industry, the terminology and even the origin story of Metacore’s hit game Merge Mansion.

“Everyone in the program came from different backgrounds and had varying degrees of experience in mobile games. But in the end, it didn’t matter how much you knew about gaming because that was all covered within the first couple of weeks through lessons with different people. I got to learn about game marketing, branding and even talent acquisition in the industry,” Hy describes.

Aleksi agrees with Hy’s comments and also mentions how much he appreciated the company’s emphasis on social safety:

“We were treated so well and given permission to take our time in learning things. In fact, one of the most valuable things Metacore taught me was the importance of employee wellbeing and sustainable work habits. This is something I will keep with me for the rest of my career – now I know from experience that companies can be successful and have a healthy work environment. And that even in competitive industries, pushing people to their limit comes with more risks than rewards.”

Metacore blog image Hy

Mentors guiding the way from the start to finish

While Hy began the program as a Game Artist, her mentor quickly recognized that she could have a lot of potential as a UI Artist as well. Turned out that designing and implementing games’ graphic interface was the perfect match for Hy.

“During the second half of Press Play, I joined a game team as a UI Artist and I loved it! I’m so grateful that my mentor recommended that for me and then continued to teach me and showed me the way.”

In general, mentors were a huge support for the team, which was one of the things that made the first six weeks a highlight of the program for Aleksi.

“We worked on our practice prototype with the Press Play group and were mentored by very knowledgeable people who are amazing at their work. Now that I’m a permanent employee at Metacore, I hope I can support future Press Play participants in the same way,” Aleksi mentions.

Metacore blog image Aleksi

Press Play is tailored to help you learn and succeed

When we asked Aleksi to give his advice for future mobile games industry talent thinking about applying for the next Press Play program, he gave a very straightforward answer:

“Don’t worry about making yourself look accomplished and experienced – your passion and personality are higher on the priority list. And if you get in, don’t be scared about making mistakes – the beginning of your career is the best time to make them and learn from them. Also, ask a lot of questions; it’s very appreciated here at Metacore and it shows that you’re eager to learn.”

Hy echoes Aleksi’s points about showing your personality in the application process.

“I showed my excitement and passion for the role and the company – I didn’t even try to hide the fact that I really wanted the position. I also recommend doing as much background research as possible. I read through Metacore’s website, everything about the company culture and the game. Not only did it give me confidence in the interview process but it also made me certain that the culture would be a perfect fit,” Hy adds.

While the first Press Play program wrapped up in March, Hy and Aleksi will continue working at Metacore as permanent employees.

If you’re interested in applying for the next Press Play trainee program send us your application by April 30th, 2023

Press Play