I switched companies and moved into Osaka from Tokyo a month ago. Although my previous company was a Japanese game developer, my current company is a branch of a Western game developer. This made a big difference for me in terms of lifestyle and working style.
Shorter Commute Time
Until a month ago, I had been commuting to Tokyo from Yokohama. Commute time was about an hour and 40 minutes, one way. It means I had to use three hours to commute every weekday. I could watch a movie with my iPhone in the train.
But, now, my commute time is a half hour one way. I can watch a movie with my home theater before commuting to work.
Better work life balance
Japanese game developers are notorious for too much overtime. In fact, I had been working overtime almost every weekday. But, now, I usually don’t work overtime.
I believe that a creator sometimes needs to work overtime for accomplishing higher quality of games (that is a part of our pride). It’s a matter of degree. The cause of overtime in a Japanese developer is bad production process and unclear principles, I believe. I’ll write an entry about those.
Why did I switch companies?
Because I’ll work abroad in the future. That means U.S, Canada, Europe, Singapore and so on.
My first goal is to move to San Francisco, U.S. It means that I will leave Osaka. But, now, I am enjoying Osaka.