Senior / Principal Combat Designer

 Irvine, CA

Welcome to Lightspeed LA (Irvine), the first U.S.-based, AAA game development studio for Tencent Games, where we are focused on building open-world games that emphasize an ambitious living world, sophisticated player-driven gameplay, and mature, thoughtful storytelling!

Why join Lightspeed LA (Irvine)?

Creation is the soul of our studio. For us, it’s not only about the exciting, new AAA open world game we’re developing, but also about team values and studio culture. We foster an open and transparent environment where everyone feels comfortable providing constructive feedback about all aspects of our games.

  • We encourage the showing of work that’s still in progress
  • We don’t attack or question unfinished work, we celebrate its promise
  • We have a No Blame Culture where we blame the problem, not the person

This is a safe place to fail, and we don't view failure as a negative, but as the natural result of pushing boundaries and exploring new ideas.

We create together. We face challenges together. Most importantly, we succeed together.


Lightspeed LA is looking for a highly creative and technical Combat Designer who has a passion for building AAA open world games. This role is responsible for driving core combat systems for the player and enemy AI. As a Senior Combat Designer, you will collaborate with Art, Design, and Tech to bring cutting edge AAA combat experiences to life.

Required Skills:

  • 5+ years of experience in gameplay design, including senior or lead experience
  • Extensive experience building combat systems for player characters and / or enemies
  • Establish core combat functionality and pipeline with designers, engineers, and animators
  • Drive the vision, prototyping, implementation, and fine tuning of combat systems from concept to completion including controls, balance, animation implementation and tuning, environmental interaction, sound effects, and visual effects
  • Proven ability to implement and troubleshoot complex character logic through scripting
  • Design compelling AI archetypes, gameplay scenarios, and encounters that cover a dynamic range of intensity and complexity
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills with the ability to convey difficult and abstract concepts to all disciplines
  • Collaborate with others to establish and maintain high quality design practices and metrics
  • Partner closely with other disciplines to ensure that combat systems complement narrative, art, technical and design decisions

Preferred Qualifications

  • Strong technical knowledge of scripting languages or code is preferred
  • Possess an extensive knowledge of competing products, a deep understanding of the complex overlap between combat and open world gameplay systems and an expert grasp of combat timing and feel.
  • Experience with modern game engines and visual scripting (Unreal, Unity, etc.)
  • A passion for mentoring designers and leading by example
  • Shipped at least one AAA title from inception to finish

Perks and Benefits:

Just some of the benefits of working with us here at our newly built studio in Irvine, CA.

  • Beverages, fresh fruit, and snacks
  • 401k with employer match
  • Monthly Cell phone bill reimbursement
  • Financial wellness sessions
  • Flexible spending account
  • Team building and company outings
  • Parental leave for new parents
  • Company paid health insurance
  • Life and disability insurance
  • Employee assistance program
  • Wellness training
  • Travel insurance
  • Preventive care

To prioritize health and safety during the pandemic, we are working remotely until further notice, and will be conducting interviews virtually. The position is still expected to be 100% onsite in Irvine, California as soon as it is appropriate.