BA(Hons) in Game Development

General

Program Description

Join a community of people who live and breathe games. From day one, you’ll work as you would within a team in the industry, developing your own games. You’ll replicate professional practice, learning in a range of environments to discover your specialism and prepare for the career you want.

Introduction

You'll learn how different specialisms work together, how to work effectively in a team and the role you play in it. This course simulates how the industry operates, in a studio environment that's built to mirror a real games development studio.

You will:

  • Build your own games from day one and have the opportunity to establish your own company in your third year.
  • Work in one of the largest and best-equipped dedicated game making spaces of any university in the UK.
  • Change the games industry by making original games for new markets.
  • Work in a department dedicated to gaming and be surrounded by people working in all aspects of the industry.
  • Develop a multi-disciplinary approach, using Unity and Unreal to touch upon all aspects of game creation.
  • Have the flexibility to change your area of specialism based on your skills and interests.

Specialisms

Art Audio Programming
Suitable if you have art or game art qualifications, and want to develop your skills as a game artist on the studio floor in team projects.
UCAS code: W281
Build your skills as a game audio designer. Previous music qualifications will provide a good foundation.
UCAS code: W283
Develop programming skills from the very basics. A background doing some IT, computing or maths will prove helpful in this specialism.
UCAS code: W285
Animation Design Writing
Develop as a game-specific animator and rigger. Previous art, media or ICT qualifications will give you a good grounding.
UCAS code: W282
Design the systems, levels and content of games. Suitable if you have a deep passion for games and gameplay, and can interpret game mechanics.
UCAS code: W284
Continue your writing as a game designer and narrative specialist. Previous English qualifications or writing work will give you a good foundation.
UCAS code: W286

What we're looking for

We want someone who:

  • Is passionate about creating games.
  • Wants to work as a specialist game developer in either the AAA or indie area of the industry.
  • Wants to develop real games in multidisciplinary teams in a studio mirroring the industry.
  • Enthusiastically follows current video game technologies.
  • Shows communication skills and understands their specialism (Art, Animation, Design, Audio, Programming or Writing).

Hands holding the game controllers JESHOOTS.COM / Unsplash

What our graduates do

Graduates from this course have started their own game development studios and gone on to careers as artists and designers at major game studios like Creative Assembly, Supermassive Games, Rare, King and TT Games.

What you'll learn

You'll get a feel for all the skills and disciplines in game development, before specialising in one of six routes – but you'll have the flexibility to change your route at any point during your first year. You'll then progress from small tasks to games with a more challenging scope as you take on team-led projects.

Specialisms

  • BA(Hons) Game Development: Art - Learn core game art abilities, like character and environment modelling, using industry-standard packages, processes and pipelines.
  • BA(Hons) Game Development: Animation - Working closely with artists, you'll rig and animate models following the animation pipeline to get them into games and bring them to life.
  • BA(Hons) Game Development: Audio - Create sound effects, sonic environments and scores that electrify players, and then work in-engine to integrate them into games in an immersive way.
  • BA(Hons) Game Development: Design - Prototype and implement the rules, systems, puzzles and levels that challenge players and shape their experience, iteratively testing and refining them.
  • BA(Hons) Game Development: Programming - Become a gameplay programmer who implements and tests the core mechanics of the game and evaluates how players interact with them.
  • BA(Hons) Game Development: Writing - Create backstories, dialogue, quests and player journeys as you learn foundational creative writing skills and translate them into a narrative design for games.

Year one

You'll learn what it takes to make a game, including asset creation, project management and pipelines, pitching ideas, and considering theories about what games are and how they engage players. Developing your skills and aligning them to your chosen route, you'll enhance cross-disciplinary groups as you pitch a game to tutors and build it together.

Modules

  • Development Principles
    You'll immerse yourself in our studio culture and learn the basics of making games.
  • Theory 1: Reading Experiences
    You'll study and write about games and VR in the same way as you might write about books on an English course or films in Film Studies.
  • Multidisciplinary Development Practice
    You'll pitch your first full game and build it as a team using Agile methodologies.

Specialist modules depending on your route

Art

  • Environment Art 1
  • Environment Art 2

Animation

  • Game Animation 1
  • Game Animation 2

Audio

  • Designing Sound
  • Music Technologies

Design

  • Game Design 1
  • Game Design 2

Programming

  • Principles of Computing
  • Creative Computing
  • Individual Creative Computing Project

Writing

  • Craft of Writing
  • Audiences & Contexts

Year two

With greater confidence in your skills, you'll mirror professional game development as you tackle a larger game project in a multi-skilled group. Over the course of the year, you'll research and experiment with various approaches and create innovative features. You'll investigate strategies to enhance the player experience, and learn what drives industry trends and developments from visiting professionals, all the while developing the specialist skills that will inform your practice.

Modules

  • World Creation Project: Pre-Production
    You'll devise the concept for a world and take it forward into a fuller game title.
  • World Creation Project: Production
    During this module, you'll develop your world creation project into a pitchable game, showcased to the rest of the Academy.
  • Theory 2: Form & Player Experience
    Aligning your production with game studies theory, you’ll write your manifesto as a games developer, discussing the ethical and industrial debates around game production.

Specialist modules depending on your route

Art
  • Developing Specialist Game Art Practice
  • Developing Concept Art Vocabularies
  • Developing Character Art Vocabularies
  • Developing Environment Art Vocabularies
Animation
  • Game Animation 3
  • Developing Specialist Game Art Practice
Audio
  • Supersonic
  • Developing Specialist Game Development Practice
Design
  • Game Design 3
  • Developing Specialist Game Development Practice
Programming
  • Specialisms in Creative Computing
  • Individual Specialist Computing Project: Interfaces & Interaction
  • Individual Specialist Computing Project: Artificial Intelligence
Writing
  • Games and Digital Writing Workshop
  • Developing Specialist Game Development Practice

Year three

During the final year of your game development course, you'll produce a complete and potentially publishable game as part of a team. By pitching it to industry professionals, you'll receive reliable and insightful feedback. You'll also research a topic relevant to your project and build an online portfolio with a clear centrepiece, sharpening your real-world insights and building valuable career contacts.

Modules

  • Professional Practice and enterprise
    With your career in mind, you'll produce a professional online presence for your work and learn how to network and get a job in games.
  • Major Game Development Project: Pre-Production
    The vast majority of your third year is spent making a game in a team, which may result in forming your own games company.
  • Preparing for the Future
    You'll research and investigate topics important to your route and practice, exploring how the rapidly evolving games industry could change as you look towards entering it.
  • Major Game Development Project: Production
    Completing your third-year game, you'll showcase it to the rest of the academy and pitch it to invited industry guests

The modules above are those being studied by our students or proposed new ones. Programme structures and modules can change as part of our curriculum enhancement and review processes. If a certain module is important to you, please discuss it with the Course Leader.

How you'll learn

You'll create original games through group work, professional practice and Game Jams. You'll also develop practical skills through practice-based workshops, and learn to evaluate and improve your work through group tutorials, crits, and individual tutorials. Regular learning will come from lectures, seminars and our Virtual Learning Environment.

If you enrol in Design, Programming, Art, or Animation, you'll share specialist first-year modules with other Games Academy courses. As the course progresses, you'll move from 2D to 3D and shift your focus to project teamwork.

Assessment methods

  • Teamwork features heavily to reflect the industry.
  • Game making is the primary form of assessment.
  • Continuous assessment with no formal examinations.
  • Visual, verbal and written assignments.
  • Portfolio of project work.

Staff

Coming from companies like Square-Enix and Octopus 8 Studios, you’ll benefit from your tutors’ experience working on titles like Hitman, League of Legends, World of Warcraft and Final Fantasy XII.

Some members of staff only teach on specific modules, and your course might not feature every member.

Facilities

  • Large studio equipped with regularly updated, state-of-the-art game development machines.
  • XSens Motion Capture suites.
  • Life drawing studio for artists and weekly life sessions.
  • Specialised computing hardware for game development, deep learning projects, motion capture and immersive experiences.
  • Standard packages used in software development for the games and visual effects industries, including Adobe and Autodesk suites.
  • Attached lab committed to staying at the cutting edge - featuring augmented reality, virtual reality AR/VR/MR (XR) equipment including HoloLens, Vive Pro and Oculus Rift.
  • Attached lab with access to PS4 development and testing kits.
  • Access to a variety of game engines including Unity and Unreal.
  • Studios open late during term time.
  • Access to free software via Microsoft Imagine.

How to apply

Apply via UCAS

Ready to join us? If you're applying through UCAS Apply and Track, you'll need to reference the university and course codes below.

  • University code: F33
  • UCAS codes
  • Art: W281
  • Animation: W282
  • Audio: W283
  • Design: W284
  • Programming: W285
  • Writing: W286

Applying as an international student? 

International students can apply for a course through UCAS, via an agent or directly with the university.

Entry requirements

We consider all applications on their own individual merit and potential. We invite all applicants to an interview day or audition to give them the opportunity to demonstrate this along with what inspires and motivates them in their field. Applicants will also be able to show their portfolio or give a performance depending on the course. We welcome applications from all subject backgrounds, whether you’ve specialised in STEM, the arts or humanities.  

As a guide our typical offer at an undergraduate level is 104 – 120 UCAS Tariff points, primarily from Level 3 qualifications such as but not limited to A-levels, a BTEC Extended Diploma or a Foundation Diploma. 

Language requirements

For applicants whose first language is English, we require you to have or be working towards GCSE English Language Grade 4 (C), or equivalent. 

If English is not your first language you will need to meet the same standard which is equivalent to the IELTS Academic 6.0 overall score, with at least 5.5 in Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening. We accept a range of in-country equivalencies and approved tests.  

If you need a Tier 4 student visa to study in the UK, you’ll need to take an approved Secure English Language Test (SELT). You can read our English Language Requirements for more information.

Deadlines

  • UK/EU applications: 15 January 2020 (for equal consideration) 
  • Late applications will be considered if there are places available. 
  • International fee payers can apply throughout the year. But we recommend applying as early as possible, to make time for visa and travel arrangements.

Tuition fees 2020-21

  • £9,250 - full-time UK/EU
  • £16,000 - full-time international

Tuition fees are set annually and are subject to review each year. The University may, therefore, raise tuition fees in the second or subsequent years of a course, in line with inflation and/or the maximum permitted by law or Government policy. Students will be notified of any changes as soon as possible.

Last updated May 2020

About the School

Established in 1902 as Falmouth School of Art, it has grown over a century to become a digital innovation hub. Today, its portfolio of undergraduate and postgraduate courses represents the breadth of ... Read More

Established in 1902 as Falmouth School of Art, it has grown over a century to become a digital innovation hub. Today, its portfolio of undergraduate and postgraduate courses represents the breadth of the Creative Industries, the fastest growing sector in the UK economy. Now, as we face the fourth industrial revolution; as technology provides great opportunities as well as challenges, it’s clear that Falmouth’s specialisms of creative innovation; creative thinking, problem-solving, communication and storytelling, will be key to future economic and cultural success both at a local and global level. Read less
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