Employee Speak: Mukund Rao, Studio Manager, Dhruva Interactive, Bangalore; Aug'07


1. What does your organization do?

Dhruva is a pioneer in game development in India. Some of the AAA game titles that we have worked on are Mission: Impossible, Mission: Impossible 2, Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, TOCA PRO Race driver and Forza.

Dhruva is also into mobile game development and we have won the FICCI BAF Awards 2 years in a row for Slyder and Cricinfo Genie.


2. What is your role in Dhruva?

As Manager of the PC/ Console Art Studio, I manage the team and projects at the art studio at Dhruva. I facilitate art direction and internal production of games. I also interact with and manage clients like Microsoft and EA to name a few.


3. What are the key challenges that you face in the industry and specifically in your role? How do you deal with them?

The gaming industry has evolved such that the quality of art is very close to that of films. The challenge today is to strike a balance between quality of deliverables, timelines and the creativity among artists. Artists, by nature, have a creative mind and hence require the space and time to orient their thought processes into positive ingenuity and creativity. It becomes difficult for them to deliver within timelines specified by the client.


4. How do you foster creativity in your team members?

We spend a lot of time playing games and discussing game art. As a team we all try and derive inspiration from the pop-art scene at large. There is emphasis on people working on their pet projects during slack times. We also have started internal contests that are fun and help artists think out of the box.


5. What motivates you at work?

‘Game Art’ is interplay of art and science with endless opportunities. The challenge to be creative within the technological constraints imposed by the hardware platform motivates me the most.


6. How do you support and motivate your team members?

The ideal way to motivate my team members is by creating excitement around the work that we do. By highlighting some of the new project deals that have been signed up and the appreciation and positive feedback given by some of our customers.


7. Lastly, what is unique about working in Dhruva?

The constant demand for perfection and the open and non-hierarchical set up is what sets Dhruva aside from the others. The demand for perfection keeps us on our toes all the time, we innovate progressively and the sense of achievement that comes out of it is tremendous.  The non-hierarchical culture is a big boon, supporting employee communication at all levels.