The Challenges of Building Game Dev Portfolio, and How to Resolve Them

TL; DRGame development studios frequently face the same problems when creating new games; Vision alignment (or lack thereof), a lack of time & human resources, missing artistic skills, approval bottleneck, and the hardship of finding how to objectively measure the quality of your game are all issues that strike a chord with veterans of this industry. While some issues can be fixed by adjusting your in-house workflow, others will be easier to handle through outsourcing and engagement with your player community.


Struggling to build and expand your gaming portfolio? You’re not alone. While each studio will run into some unique obstacles on their creative course, a lot of the challenges behind portfolio creation are pretty common across the board. In this article, we will look at some of the bottlenecks of game development that stall your growth and will offer potential solutions that can make the creation of new titles a little easier.


When your individual blockers are lumped together, the pressure on your game development process may seem much more than the sum of its parts. Separating your problems by categories will make them easier to solve. Let’s divide your challenges and conquer them one-by-one. 

Vision Alignment

In the entertainment industry, one behind-the-scenes narrative is sure to show up every several months regardless of content type, be it a show, or a movie, or a game. It goes: “the Good Version of this got lost in production hell”. The studio executives removed all the flavor from the initial concept art, or the initial version of a loved passion project received too many changes once the big guys got their say, – no matter the specific issue, all this leads right back to vision alignment. Pinning down what exactly your stakeholders want from you, all the while providing them with a wide selection of options on your side is a tough balancing act, especially when you seem to know exactly what your audience needs… But the clarity is worth the effort, if you want to spend as little time as possible in the purgatory of unending edits.  

Christopher Mifsud of Gamescom recommends having one person on your team as an assigned “central vision holder and decision maker”. This centralized approach might seem like a lot for one person, but it takes the pressure off the rest of the team, unifies your creative direction, and speeds up your decision-making as a result.  

Positions well suited to take on this role are your Game Director, Producer, Lead Designer, Executive Producer, or somebody else with good leadership skills and solid understanding of your target audience. And, since with great power comes great responsibility, the employee in question will have to do the majority of back-and-forths with your main stakeholders and face the risk of becoming the scapegoat in case any serious miscommunications arise. Heavy is the head that bears the central vision – make sure to pick someone who performs well under stress. 

Additional qualities to possess include Emotional awareness, Collaboration, Communication that connects, Adaptability, Creativity, and Critical analysis. Forbes advices to focus on Creativity and Communication that Connects specifically, if you want to elevate your soft leadership skills. While creativity is crucial for any type of innovation in the fast-changing environment of game development, the ability to communicate in a productive way is important to delegate your innovative ideas to the public.  

Time and Human Resources

It’s time to run through the project readiness checklist.  

  • Do you have enough artists to create the type of art your game requires?  
  • Are your designers and testers ready to go?  
  • If we are being realistic, will they be able to finish their given tasks in time?  

Crunch culture is an unfortunate reality of modern game development, and if you do not wish your studio to be described as “bleeding every hour out of your staff“, it is better to answer these questions early and honestly.   

In our recent article we discussed how iGaming feels the heat even more than the regular game development. The need to put out new content several times a month, your competitors breathing down your necks, and the still-present stigma around the industry all make the search for talent a high-priority high-pressure task. Some of the ways to handle the talent hunger are as simple as good salaries and plentiful bonuses, but it is equally important to address your company’s reluctance to outsource and contribute to making your workplace a comfortable and ethical environment for the staff you already have and wish to keep.

Skill Issue

Ancient wisdom tells you to never bite off more than you can chew. Is your existing team capable of delivering the type of art that’s required? According to a recent Infopro Learning post, “it has become inevitable for organizations to adopt effective learning talent solutions to sustain business development in 2023 and even after”. Tanja Loktionova, the founder of Values Value, has also discussed how the modern HR trends in game development lean towards improving and retaining your existing talent. Right now, boosting the expertise of the people you already have seems to be more important than taking chances, so investigate a good Learning Management System to optimize your employee education and get your experts up to speed. 

Another elephant in the room is the use of AI where your workers’ skills may not suffice. This area is currently going through a period of intense – and, as a result, often unregulated, – growth, so look into it, but tread lightly. Make sure that your artists use their own art or an authors-approved selection to feed the generative net. Ensure that AI is just another tool in their toolbox, rather than the main driving force behind their visuals. Right now the temptation to latch onto this hot trend is very high, with the excitement oftentimes clouding basic cybersecurity, so do your research and watch out for the neural networks that could land your company in hot water over copyright infringement, or gain access to surprising amounts of your confidential data without your consent. To explore the potential challenges and advantages of using AI technology in game development, read our new blog post.

Approval Bottleneck

The use of licensed intellectual property can be a tricky subject. When you’re working with original owners or an outsourced development team, how do you split the bill? The legal aspects of this relationship can delay the release of your game by a lot, so it is paramount to lay the proper groundwork for your future collaboration in advance. In 2023, this topic is bound to cross paths with the use of Artficial Intelligence, so read up on that, too – our recent article will provide you with the basics

Different types of intellectual property might have different windows of time, during which the legal details need to be sorted. It is always a good idea to have an intellectual property lawyer on standby, to come up with a legal strategy that will help you approve your IP as fast as possible and will protect your rights from infringement. For example, if your game introduces a fully innovative dynamic, it would make sense to patent it. Creative forms of expression that are not fully innovative, but still unique, are subject to copyright, while your game’s title and logo – to trademark.

Measuring Quality

Art is notoriously subjective…Or is it? While you may have no control over the individual and personal relationships the players will build with your product, there are definitely some guidelines on how to ensure your game has good technical quality. According to Android, this includes “stability, performance, and resource utilization of your app or game”, and the following criteria can point you in the right direction: 

  • Different devices – same quality. If your game is accessible in different formats, all of those has to be equally enjoyable. Be thoughtful and intentional about your porting process, and go the extra mile on testing.  
  • Stability. Nobody likes a game that constantly crashes. Keep your stability mentrics consistent and listen to user feedback to get better. 
  • Great performance. Short start-up time, fast loading process and smooth bug-free rendering of your graphics all make up the basis of player satisfaction.  
  • Battery life and network bandwidth. Make sure your game’s use of energy and connection is appropriate. 
  • Size. When it comes to how much free space your game requires, less is more. Minimize the size if you can.  
  • Regular updates. Have a schedule for your releases and stick to it. And don’t forget the previous point – the size of updates should be small, as well. 

While it is crucial to look at concrete deliverables that you can measure, you should not forget about the very human approach to quality – asking people. Focus groups can provide surprising revelations about your product and move you in a completely unexpected direction that will make all the difference between a good game and a moving entertaining experience that will make the list of your players’ favorites. 


The challenges of growing your gaming portfolio are diverse, but so are the ways to solve them. Stay in touch with your employees, facilitate open communication with your main stakeholders and your player community, and invest in increasing the skillset of the workers you have right now. Don’t forget the legal nuances of using licensed intellectual property and Artificial Intelligence. It takes a village to create a single new game, so expansion of your portfolio with multiple new titles is a task that will require even more togetherness but will also present you with even more chances to unite your team.  

Innovecs Games can help you face all of the challenges discussed in this article. Our game development expertise spans over a decade and our experts are always only a click away. 

Yuliia Otrishko,
Gaming Writer
If you need assistance in building a product from scratch or supporting the existing one, drop us a line to discuss details, and we will reply within 24 hours.