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We speak to Andrii about his work on the CRYENGINE Hub, his love for volleyball, and his advice for programmers!
CRYENGINE is the collective output of a wide range of people from all kinds of disciplines. Today we're chatting to Andrii Afanasiev, Technical Lead for CRYENGINE Web Platforms, about his passion for World of Warcraft, programming, and plans for users to get into CRYENGINE quicker and easier than ever before.
Hi Andrii! Can you tell us about your background and your journey to Crytek?
I was born in the beautiful city of Sevastopol on the Black Sea coast. All my life, I have loved, and still love, to take things apart and see how they work. Now I am building new things with CRYENGINE with my awesome team! However, programming is not the only thing that I love to do. I play volleyball as a middle blocker and love to explore different countries and snowboard with my family whenever I can!
My career started in 2010, right after university, on a project related to distance learning. During this time, I gained a lot of experience in all areas of development as a full-stack web developer. It was great, but I decided that I wanted to try to make something really cool and found a position in Crytek! Here I found many cool people who help build the future of the CRYENGINE.
What is your main focus at the moment, and what are your plans for the future?
Currently, my responsibility is for one big project – the CRYENGINE Hub. As Technical Lead, I'm responsible for technical decisions, like what technology we use now and in the future, how we migrate things, how to connect multiple systems, and how to deliver all of this for our users. We aim to give CRYENGINE users a reliable service, improve it, and make CRYENGINE more attractive and easier to use.
Together with our project manager, I also act as an entry point for all requests from Crytek's teams to our team. On top of this, I develop, research, and implement proof-of-concept projects and mentor developers to help them learn new things and develop their skills.
Our main focus now is allowing users to get into CRYENGINE as quickly as possible. In the long term, our team will become part of a powerful platform for CRYENGINE developers, and we will deliver high-quality and reliable solutions for all. Our last major release included substantial infrastructure changes behind the scenes, allowing us a great deal of flexibility to roll out some really great features in the future.
What does a regular day at CRYENGINE look like for you?
Every day is unique. However, some daily routines include coffee, emails, alerts, and syncing up with the plan. We have a team meeting early in the day to decide the plans for the day and discuss any issues. After that, multiple things can happen, like meetings with other teams to synchronize work, interviews with new candidates, and typical tasks like development, research, and bug fixing.
At the end of the day, I try to keep some time spare for learning and reading the latest technology news, evaluating community feedback, and taking notes for new ideas and findings.
What does it take to do your job well?
I try to follow a few simple rules, and I think they are helpful for all programmers, whatever kind of project they are working on. First, learning and research. We work in a fast-moving sector. Every day, your knowledge becomes a bit more outdated, so it's worth learning and researching all kinds of different things related to your field. Even if you do not use something immediately, it could spark an idea or a new solution for your project in the future.
And do not be afraid to try something new! Even if you fail, you will learn. Just remember that "no result is also a result." We are human, and we can and do make mistakes. However, we have the power to fix them and change to avoid similar mistakes in the future.
What advice would you give people who want to get into your field?
If you want to jump into this area, remember that learning and gaining experience is essential. But the main thing is that you should love your job and what you do!
What are you playing at the moment?
Currently, I play World of Warcraft and Oxygen Not Included to relax away from work. Sometimes I also go back and play my favorite ever game - Total Annihilation.
If you have questions or feedback about CRYENGINE, let us know in the comments, on the forum, or via Facebook and Twitter. You can pick up tips and tricks about our game development, ask questions, and more by joining our community and the CRYENGINE development team over on our official CRYENGINE Discord channel.
If you find a bug in the engine, please report it directly on GitHub, which helps us process the issue quickly and efficiently. You can find out how to submit feedback on GitHub, and access CRYENGINE source code, here. Don't forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel, where we host a range of content, including tutorials covering all aspects of the engine and game design. Want to show your love for CRYENGINE? Pick up merch over on the official online Crytek Store.