Lead Unity Programmer

About Sumo Leamington

Established in 2019, Sumo Leamington is led by a team of industry veterans with a wealth of experience in the games industry.

With three core specialisms: service-based games, free to play titles and mobile, the team at Sumo Leamington are focussed on creating games which players keep coming back to – day after day, year after year.

As winners of the TIGA Star Employment Award for 2021, recipients of the GI Biz 2020 Best Places to Work Award and listed as one of the UK’s 100 Best Large Companies to Work for in 2021, Sumo Digital has enjoyed 18 years of stability and growth since its formation in 2003 and continues to strive for excellence across every single project. 

The team at Sumo Leamington is growing, and we’re looking for the industry’s brightest stars to help bring a series of incredible projects to life.

This is an incredible opportunity to join the Sumo Leamington development studio as a Lead Programmer, leading a team of programmers working on a wholly original title. The game is a Sumo original IP, based on an in-house concept with development well underway - it’s a fun, graphically gorgeous, high-paced multiplayer experience that will initially launch on PC (via Steam), with potential for future release on other platforms. Applicants will need to demonstrate expertise in Unity, be a technical team leader, and have a portfolio of shipped game titles.

The role is a mix of hands-on programming and development and managing a team of highly motivated Unity programmers.

The Lead Programmer will take day-to-day responsibility for running the programming team developing the game client, whilst collaborating with the backend team who are responsible for the server code and infrastructure. You’ll have oversight of programmers working in a variety of technical disciplines such as Gameplay, AI, Audio, Animation, UI, Physics, Graphics, and other areas. Your years of experience in game development will help lead the team and ensure we deliver an incredible game to our players for years to come.

The candidate must demonstrate excellence as a C# programmer, able to develop maintainable and well-engineered code which is robust and extensible.

As a Lead Programmer, you should be comfortable managing other programmers and strive to get the very best out of your team. You should be friendly, approachable and patient and able to mentor, advise and help your team. You’ll learn their strengths and areas for growth, identify training needs and learning opportunities, and be prepared to build a mentality of engineering excellence within the team.

The Lead Programmer on this project will report to the Studio Technical Director. Sumo Leamington is a remote-first studio, which means your place of work would be home, but you would be required to come on-site to our Leamington Spa office on an ad-hoc basis. 

Key Responsibilities of the role

  • Implement game features to a high technical standard using Unity & C#.
  • Manage, mentor, and support a talented and diverse team of Unity programmers. Undertake 1-to-1 meetings regularly, give praise, set development goals, and undertake performance reviews. Help them to achieve their professional goals and objectives and grow them as professional software developers.
  • Build relationships with key members of the development team, such as producers, design leads, art lead, the development director, and the lead backend programmer. Speak regularly to them to understand what the requirements are for the game features, both those in development and future features.
  • Provide updates to studio management on risk areas for the game’s development and propose any risk mitigations.
  • Be responsible for growing the project programming team where necessary. Provide updates to studio management on hiring requirements for the programming team, review CVs passed on from the recruitment team, and undertake interviews for programmer candidates.
  • Recommend programmers for promotion if they are performing well.
  • Identify training needs for individuals and work with the TD and Sumo’s Training Team to provide any such training.
  • Essential experience & skills

  • 5 years or more of programming experience in the games industry.
  • At least 3 shipped video-game titles in the past 10 years.
  • At least 2 years using Unity engine and C#
  • Experience of leading and mentoring a team of programmers.
  • A track record of learning new languages and technologies to adapt to requirements.
  • Debugging code on various platforms.
  • Code profiling and optimisation experience.
  • Strong understanding of Git o Understanding of branching policies & Pull-Request workflow o Reviewing code, providing constructive feedback and suggestions for code improvements.
  • Task tracking systems, such as Jira, or something similar.
  • Strong technical documentation skills.
  • Planning milestones and deliverables for a programming team, breaking down working into smaller tasks, and estimating how long tasks will take.
  • Other experience which would be useful, but not essential

  • Other experience which would be useful, but is not essential
  • Resource planning, identifying where we need to hire new developers for the project.
  • Recruiting programmers - reviewing CVs and interviewing programming candidates.
  • Collaborating with external clients & technology providers.
  • Games as a Service – have you worked on games with a long lifespan which are updated regularly with new levels and content, new game modes, and other ongoing improvements?
  • Benefits of working at SUMO Leamington

  • Remote first with an Ad hoc visit to the studio
  • We provide all our developers with top-of-the-range development hardware
  • Monthly Studio-wide Learning Day, where everyone can learn new skills which are relevant to their role.
  • Work with an incredibly friendly & diverse team.
  • A great work/life balance 
  • What We Offer:

    ·               Annual Bonus & Annual Salary Reviews
    ·               Electric Car Scheme
    ·               Salary Sacrifice Pension Scheme
    ·               Flexible Working  
    ·               27 Days Holiday, including your birthday a duvet day and Christmas
    ·               Holiday ‘buy and sell’ scheme
    ·               Access to 4,000 Udemy Courses, The Gnomen Workshop, GDC Vault and more
    ·               Enhanced Mat/Paternity & Adoption pay
    ·               Free Life Assurance - 4x Salary
    ·               Free Income Protection Scheme -up to 75%
    ·               Free Dental Insurance
    ·               Supportive Employee Assistance Programme with confidential 24/7/365 helpline & app
    ·               Access remote GP, Mental Health, Physio appointments & medical second opinions
    ·               Additional flexible benefits scheme
    ·               Cycle to Work Scheme
    ·               Mental Health First Aiders
    ·               Payroll Giving Scheme
    ·               Game & Book Libraries
    ·               Long service & project completion awards
    ·               Wrap Parties
    ·               Alternative Travel Prize Draw
    ·               The Sumo GameJam
    ·               Great family events
    ·               Studio clubs, inc. running, board games, film…
    ·               Life Drawing
    ·               Yoga Classes
    ·               Free fruit and drinks
    ·               Employee Referral Bonus     
    ·               Career Development      

     Where do we stand on diversity?

    At Sumo, we want to enable everyone to bring their full, authentic selves to work every single day. We acknowledge that the games industry is far from perfect and a global organisation with people all over the world, from all kinds of backgrounds, we know it’s part of our duty to provide everyone at Sumo with a safe, accepting and affirming working environment.
    We encourage and welcome applicants from all backgrounds.


    More about Sumo Leamington:

    Sumo Leamington is situated just outside of the town centre and was recently awarded the Games Industry BIZ Best Diversity Award – a testament to its ongoing commitment to creating a home for everyone. The Studio features many onsite facilities  – everything needed for the team to create the world’s best games!
    Ranked the happiest town to live in two official polls, Leamington Spa is a hidden gem nestled amongst the stunning countryside of Warwickshire and remains a hotspot for talented individuals and creative minds within the games industry.  Those living in Leamington Spa can enjoy:

    o   Local attractions such as Jepson Gardens and the Royal Pump Rooms
    o   A rich and diverse culture
    o   An expansive history and stunning architecture
    o   Picturesque scenery, outstanding gardens and walking routes
    o   Beautiful museums and galleries

    More about Sumo Digital:

    Sumo Digital is an award-winning international family of studios. Recent releases from Sumo Digital studios include: BAFTA-Award winning Sackboy: A Big Adventure, Hood: Outlaws & Legends, Control Ultimate Edition on Google Stadia, Apple Arcade Award-winning Little Orpheus, Hot Shot Racing, WST Snooker and Spyder.

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