If you really want to build a career as a Game Designer, I have one very stong advice.
Join an established game development company. (as an intern game designer or a junior game designer, it doesn’t matter.)
Take part in the game’s development…
With a released game title or a few of them, you should have no problems joining any future game development companies.
Without a published title, no matter how much you talk, or how much you know, you’ll be at a disadvantage, because let’s face it, your prospective employer needs to see some proof of your capabilities or experience as a game designer. Nobody would hire someone just because they ask to be hired, and trust their words completely.
The key point here is, get your name in the credit of a released game. Joining an established game company is because you’ll have a higher chances of the game being released.
It doesn’t guarantee a future game designer’s job, and it doesn’t mean that game designers without a published title will not get a job, but it just up the chances by quite a few times!
But then, just because someone has released a game title, doesn’t mean that they are good. I have experiences with people with games under their belts, but who deliver even less than people who are so-called inexperienced.
Why is that so? Depending on the size of a company, but usually, big established game companies have many people working a game, and each person is just required to handle a portion of the game.
Whereas in small games companies, take Ksatria Gameworks and Precursor for example, people have to multi-task. Amongst these 2 companies throughout 5 years, I’ve worked as a 2d game artist, 3d game artist, game level designer, video editor, sound editor, animator, rigger… finally to lead game designer for Lone Wolf.
But of course, it doesn’t mean everyone is like that. Its just that, the possibility is always there.