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‘Press Reset’ explores volatility in video game industry

Journalist and author Jason Schreier is no stranger to taking a deep look at the video game industry. Throughout his career at Bloomberg (and formerly, Kotaku), Schreier has built his career on investigative pieces.

Schreier’s latest book, “Press Reset: Ruin and Recover in the Video Game Industry,” due out on May 11, gives an inside look at the video game industry.

Where his first book focused on how games are made, “Press Reset” puts the game developers, and the struggles and volatility they face, in the spotlight.

“It’s very difficult to maintain a career in gaming when you don’t have stability, when you can be laid off or your studio can be shut down without warning,” Schreier said. “If you’re lucky, you’ll get a couple months of severance, but sometimes as we saw with Telltale and 38 Studios and some others, you’ll just get sent out on the street.”

Game developers often are left with a choice — pick up and move, sometimes across the country, for a new job every few years, or leave the industry entirely.

“That just totally destroys people and can really wreck their lives in a lot of ways,” Schreier said. “The book explores what happens to people, what they do afterwards and possible solutions to these problems.”

Throughout the course of the book, Schreier shares the stories of people many video game fans will be familiar with, and introduces them to others for the first time.

“I think people will find them really interesting and I think their stories will really resonate with readers,” Schreier said.

While “Press Reset” shares the struggles game developers face, it’s not without hope. And he also explores possible solutions, including remote work. It’s an option he wrote about before the pandemic hit, but is now one that companies across the world has seen work firsthand.

“If I’m in Boston and I lose my job, but any game company is willing to hire me and I work from home, that changes everything,” Schreier said. “Suddenly, I’m in a position where maybe I can have a sustainable career in the games industry.”

Schreier has formed his career on sharing stories from people within the video game industry. With “Press Reset,” he hopes readers find a more intimate look at the people and the struggles they face.

“I hope it resonates with people,” Schreier said. “I’m really excited about it. I’m biased, but I think it’s much better than my first book. If people dug my first book, I think they’ll really dig this one.”

Contact Lukas Eggen at leggen@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0279. Follow @lukaseggen on Twitter.

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