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Principal Animator

Who We Are:

Founded by Greg Street who has led AAA teams for over 20 years, our new studio Fantastic Pixel Castle (FPC) is building an original fantasy IP from scratch. Players will be regularly engaged in our development process from early stages as part of our open and transparent studio culture, and we aim to craft an IP that will be worthy of their passion and dedication for decades to come. 


We are committed to being a fully remote and global studio, so that we can hire world-class people and have them live their best lives. We think top-heavy bureaucracy stifles creativity, so we aim to stay small as we focus on delivering a game and a world that players will love. We are fully-funded, and the team will share in all of our studio's successes. We're seeking talented teammates to join us in our journey so we encourage you to apply if you're interested, even if you're not sure you check all the boxes.


Position Overview:

As the Principal Gameplay Animator, and the first animator on the team, you will help to define our game’s animation direction. You will guide our team through the prototype phase, partnering with creative leadership to craft our animation style! During pre-production you will set standards, determine best practices, and execute at an incredibly high level, creating best-in-class game animations for our upcoming MMO.


The Principal Animator will work with artists, designers, and engineers in the creation of compelling player, and fantastic creature locomotion and combat animations for our brand new IP, and be a key contributor on our gameplay team. The Principal Animator is an individual contributor role that creates industry-leading animation from previsualization, prototype, through final implementation. The animations generated will enhance the moment-to-moment combat experience, create delightful traversal, a variety of character personalities, while simultaneously deepening character relationships and the world's narrative.


Principal Animator Responsibilities: 

Priorities can often change in a fast-paced environment like ours, so this role includes but is not limited to, the following responsibilities:

  • Demonstrate animation mastery by creating and delivering animation content from prototype to final quality that serves as an excellence benchmark and inspiration for the team.
  • Research and implement new and innovative systems and processes to fulfill pre-visualization objectives and execute best-in-class animation on character and creatures.
  • Create animation assets for highly iterative gameplay prototypes, continuously delivering content that meets the evolving requirements of the project.
  • Set animation quality targets for combat sequences and narrative experiences in the game. Create abilities that feel reactive, string combo maneuvers together in real-time that look and feel great, and execute ideas in Unreal to make our combat animations performant in an MMO environment 
  • Lead animation with concrete results and a hands-on approach, providing feedback and notes as needed for internal and external developers. 
  • Develop and refine Style and Process Guides to ensure smooth in-studio execution and efficient outsourcing during content development phases.
  • Proactively identify risks and propose solutions within the area of animation, rigging, simulation, and technical animation as required.



  • 10+ years of experience in AAA game animation.
  • Proven experience, having shipped multiple major titles in a similar role.
  • Portfolio showing hand-keyed gameplay animations.


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience working on an MMO, or similar genre, is a big plus.
  • Strong understanding and practical experience with next-generation asset creation workflows including rigging, simulation, cloth, and dynamics in and out of Unreal.
  • Passion for gaming (especially MMOs), with an awareness of current industry trends and an understanding of player expectations.
  • Exceptional problem-solving skills, able to adapt quickly to new technologies, workflows, and ideas.


US Salary Band: $109,000 - 196,000 USD

Canada Salary Band: $90,000 -140,000 CAD


The expected annual base pay ranges reflected in this job description are applicable to individuals residing in or working within a designated location. Any final compensation offer will depend on various factors. As part of an overall package, NetEase employees can take advantage of NetEase's comprehensive benefits and discretionary incentive plans, provided that they comply with the policies and guidelines governing those programs.

We are an equal opportunity employer that embraces diversity, equity, and inclusion. All employment decisions are made without regard to race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, age, genetic information, religion, disability, medical condition, pregnancy, marital status, family status, veteran status, or any other protected status as required by law.


We're always on the lookout for talented folks. Go ahead and apply, even if you're not sure you check all the boxes. Our Talent team will review your application and contact you if there is a potential fit.

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