Big stack of cash

For the sake of all game developers everywhere, let’s hope Notorious B.I.G. wasn’t right when he said: “The more money we come across, the more problems we see.”

If those immortal lyrics hold true, then developers are in for more trouble than they came across last year.

In a major survey, Game Developer Magazine revealed that the average developer salary was up to $84,337 in 2012. That’s an approximate increase of $3,100 from 2011. More than two-thirds of respondents noted that they received a bump in pay in 2012. Meanwhile, 29 percent reported they made the same, and 7 percent claimed a decrease.

In addition to the rise in pay, health benefits rose 15 percent in medical, dental, and vision coverage.

On the fair-pay front, men make more than women in every development job in the survey except for programming. Of all the programmers surveyed, only 4 percent are female.

Game developer

As common as layoffs seem, they are the one area of the industry that is receding. ¬†While 12 percent of developers experienced layoffs in 2012, that’s actually down 7 percent over the last three years.

Finally, as much as the press has shifted to cover indie developers, they still don’t make very much money. The average indie only brings in $23,130 a year. That’s actually down from 2011.