Materials / Surfacing Artist



Crystal Dynamics, a part of the Square Enix family and the studio behind Marvel’s Avengers and the award-winning Tomb Raider franchise, is constantly on the hunt for top-tier gaming talent worldwide. We pride ourselves on attracting and developing the best talent available to concept, create, and contribute to the most exciting projects in gaming. Our 25-plus years of game development experience, as well as our combined AAA games industry pedigree, has established us as one of best studios to work for today. Join us and help shape the future of the award-winning Tomb Raider franchise, Marvel’s Avengers, and the next Perfect Dark!

Benefits for this full-time position include a competitive salary, 100% employer-paid medical, dental, and vision insurance options and plenty of days of paid time-off. 

Position Summary 

Come be a part of the future of Tomb Raider!

Crystal Dynamics is looking for a Materials / Surfacing Artist who has an eye for high-quality, “best in class” material creation for real-time PBR environments. This Materials TA will be working on a small but fiercely talented team to bring to life the key moments in our narrative stories, levels and experiences. The successful candidate will be able to create art under minimal to moderate supervision. Real-time material experience is required. 

Essential Duties & Responsibilities 

  • Create and edit complex materials using node-based editing systems within in-game editor (Proprietary or commercial game engine experience like Unreal or Unity) 
  • Debug and optimize materials for GPU and memory using in-game/editor displays, Razor, PIX, or other profiling tools 
  • Create materials with Substance Designer, Substance Painter, and Photoshop 
  • Maintain material library organization and ensure standards are adhered to 
  • Guide artists in proper creation of layered materials and help troubleshoot any issues 
  • Uphold standards for PBR values and work with Shading Technical Artists to define new ones 
  • Monitor outsourced content for quality and provide feedback when necessary 
  • Document and develop workflows and pipelines for textures and materials, as well as educate artists on new material features, workflows, and techniques 
  • Work with Engineering and Technical Art to test new material features and provide feedback; as well as advocate for artists’ needs within Tech Art and Engineerin 
  • Assist Shader Technical Artists in developing new shaders and shader features 
  • Understand the relationship between lighting and materials in order to partner effectively with Lighting Technical Artist in order to troubleshoot rendering and lighting issues 

Essential Requirements 

  • Professional experience as a Tech Artist, with focus on complex, high-quality, materials  
  • Experience AAA pc/console titles with at least one shipped title (or relevant projects) 
  • Sound artistic judgment (composition, color, etc.) and an eye for quality 
  • Solid understanding of PBR theory, standards for materials, and real-time rendering concepts (ie. render passes, filtering, sorting, etc) 
  • Familiar with contemporary shading models for a wide range of materials 
  • Understanding of photogrammetry and scanning processes 
  • Basic knowledge (or willingness to learn) of additional languages like HLSL or Python 
  • Comfortable with source control (Perforce), including merging and integration 
  • Familiar with Unreal Engine

Bonus Skills & Experience 

  • Experience writing shaders, either using a node-based graph or writing HLSL directly, including knowledge of best practices for GPU performance 
  • Expert knowledge of PBR and advanced rendering techniques 
  • Experience with ZBrush, Houdini, Knald, XNormal, and other commonly used packages 
  • Basic rigging, skinning, and animation knowledge 
  • Significant optimization and debugging experience with PIX, GPAD, Nsight, RenderDoc, and/or similar profiling software for both GPU and CPU 
  • Ability to take on R&D tasks and produce usable new features within time constraints 

Portfolio requirements 

A portfolio submission is required for this position. Considered portfolios should include the following: 

  • A demo reel (approximately two minutes) showcasing best work from professional and personal projects. 
  • A breakdown of work done for each project presented in the demo reel, including a description of the original problem, an overview of the solution as well as technical details, explanation of contributions you were directly responsible for, and thoughts on shortcomings and possible future improvements. 
  • Source code, if you are able to share it! Ideally, provide a link to your github account. 
  • Examples of artistic work – painting, drawing, photography, textures, models, effects, etc. 

We are committed to identifying and implementing positive and persistent measures to ensure equal opportunity in the recruitment, hiring, development, training, promotion and compensation of a diverse team employee group. This includes persons of different race, color, creed, religion, sex, gender identity or gender expression, pregnancy, breastfeeding or medical conditions related to breastfeeding, genetic characteristic, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, medical condition, political affiliation, age, veteran status, uniform service member status, marital status, physical or mental disability, or citizenship, as well as any other classifications protected by applicable federal, 
state or local laws.