Çağdaş moved from Turkey to Finland and is now living the dream at Fingersoft, where he’s developing the same game he used to enjoy playing in high school. Living in Oulu is perfect, as long as you bring a dictionary with you to the grocery store!
Who are you?
My name is Çağdaş, and I'm a 25 year old guy from Turkey. Currently I'm working as a Game Developer here at Fingersoft!
What have you studied and where?
I studied Electronics and Communication Engineering at Izmir Institute of Technology in my hometown, Izmir in Turkey. I also spent a year studying architecture at Yildiz Technical University in Istanbul, which I later dropped to be able to focus on my career in game development.
How did you end up at Fingersoft?
Since the Finnish game development ecosystem is one of the best in the world, I realized that it would be a good place for me to step up my career. On the other hand, I've always wanted to live in a Nordic country and experience the beautiful nature. So that’s how I started to seek opportunities in Finland. Once I found an open position at Fingersoft and realized that my qualifications fit it well, I instantly applied. Luckily, it was the first and last application for me here in Finland ^^ After some awesome interviews with such great guys, I ended up here and started to work on a project (Hill Climb Racing 2) which I had spent countless hours playing with my friends, when I was in high school. It is nothing but a dream to me!
What have you done before this position?
Ever since I can remember, game development has been a hobby of mine. I started developing games when I was 11 and actually didn't know that one day I was going to become a game developer. During my university days, I accelerated my game development related studies and made freelance projects. I've attended many game jams and other events, and once I was in my last semester, I got an offer from one of Turkey's biggest game companies and started to work as a game developer. After working there for 1.5 years, I moved to Finland and started to live and work here.
Tell us about your job at Fingersoft!
Currently, I'm a part of the Hill Climb Racing 2 team. I’m responsible for developing upcoming features, maintaining existing ones and prototyping different game ideas. As game developers, we are in direct communication with almost all of the departments that we have and it keeps us in the middle of everything.
As I've mentioned, game development has been a hobby to me for so long. I'm doing it not only to earn my living, but also to have fun out of it. Also I think I'm a decent gamer, so that helps a lot when trying to foresee edge cases while working on a task, which I believe, reduces the development cost of it and helps you to develop as bug-free code as possible.
What’s the best thing about working at Fingersoft?
As Fingersoft, we are one of the pioneers in the mobile game development industry in the world. We have been here almost ever since smartphones became a thing. Thus, we have great know-how here which means that if you get stuck at some point, or simply feel like you run into a dead end; there will always be someone wise who can help you out and show you the way. Just because of that, I believe Fingersoft is one of best game development companies where you can thrive as an all-round game development professional.
Working at Fingersoft feels like an oasis in an endless desert, a light at the end of the tunnel, an answer to the reasons of existential suffering. I can keep count. Just join us via open positions and let's continue the list together.
What’s your best memory of Hill Climb Racing?
I believe it was the time that my name was added to the game credits. It was a huge moment for me, being able to promote from a kid who had been playing the game for years into one of the actual developers. That is something that I will never forget.
Can you tell us about your relocation to Finland and Oulu?
Well, to be honest, I had some worries about moving to another country since it was my first time. But the whole process went so smoothly, and I didn't have to worry about any details. We have great professionals here at Fingersoft who are always willing to help you with anything that you need. For those who hesitate to relocate: just don't think about it. You will be surprised how smoothly it goes.
Any thoughts about living in Oulu?
Oulu is a small city right in the middle of where beautiful nature meets a hi-tech ecosystem, versatile business structure and a strong economy. Its compactness is what I like the most. Everything is within an arm's reach, so that you don't need to make a real meal out of handling daily routines in your life. It also has some great social activities including music festivals and winter and summer sports. Also the nature will always be there waiting for you to get lost in.
Was there anything surprising?
All the milk. There are so many different types of it. It took me 15 minutes to figure out what was going on while shopping for the first time. When I got back home and opened the milk package, it was so dense that I thought it was somehow spoiled. But then it turned out to be yoghurt. Also it is very rare to see any English in the product descriptions on the packages. So, be prepared for some long shopping trips before you get used to stuff :D