According to a survey by GameDaily, in the U.S., the average salary in the gaming industry for 2007 was $73,600. Breaking down by groups we have:
- The business and marketing side have an average salary of $101,848
- Programmers have an average of $83,383
- Game producers earned on average $78,716
- Sound designers had an average of $73,409
- Artists (that deal with art and animation) earned on average $66,594
- Quality assurance people had an average of $39,063.
In my opinion, an artist should earn more than a sound designer since for me in a game, the overall animation is more important than the sound. The salary for QA people is much to low. They make sure that everything works together like it's supposed to. If a bug is discovered in the late stages of the product, or even after deployment, the negative impact is even higher. Hence it is the QA guys that have the daunting task of discovering every little bug that hides in every little corner of your product. Related to this, I found an interesting (short and to the point) blog.