Build the skills you need to turn your passion into a profession. You'll work with us to decide which route through the course matches your interests before putting your experience into practice to make completed games.
Game development demands a diverse range of skills to be brought together to produce a final product. You'll be introduced to core skills in your first year before going on to specialize in your second year, leading to one of the following degrees:
- BA(Hons) Game Development: Art
- BA(Hons) Game Development: Animation
- BA(Hons) Game Development: Audio
- BA(Hons) Game Development: Design
- BA(Hons) Game Development: Programming
- BA(Hons) Game Development: Writing
As you progress, project teamwork is at the heart of your learning experience, as recommended and supported by the industry. You'll learn about the industry by making games from concept to completion, ready to bring to market. Course tutors have substantial game development experience, will offer a unique insight into the industry and will help you build contacts.
- Work in multi-skilled teams to produce completed games
- Change your specialism at any point in your first year
- Use professional facilities and software
- Gain fluency in communicating your game ideas
- Develop commercial awareness
- Learn from industry leaders
How the course is taught
Game development demands a huge range of skills to be brought together to produce a publishable game. A flavor of all these skills will be tasted in your first year, enabling you to communicate effectively with development team members. You'll also specialize in one of six areas that are integral to game development. lf you have enrolled in Design, Art, and Animation routes you will share some further specialist modules in the first year to ensure you pursue the right route for your interests. You'll move from 2D to 3D as the course progresses, with project teamwork at the heart of your learning experience.
Given the diversity of the field, we ask students to select one of six areas to focus on during their studies. This pathway should reflect the area of the game development process that most interests you. You'll move from small projects to games with a more challenging scope as the course progresses, with team-led projects at the heart of the learning experience.
ln addition, you'll have modules appropriate to your specialism. For those enrolled in Animation, Audio and Writing routes, you'll share specialist modules in the first year with students from those departments to ensure you pursue the right route for your interests. Changing routes is possible throughout the first year.
Game Development: Design
lf working out the rules, systems, puzzles, and challenges that shape a player's experience in a game is what you get excited about, then Game Development: Design is for you. You'll graduate having had extensive experience as a game designer from paper concept to the finished article, with a portfolio of completed games on which you have worked closely with all the other development team disciplines. No specific subject area is required for this route in terms of previous qualifications, but a good, passionate understanding of games and the ability to understand and interpret software is advantageous.
What you'll do
We'll introduce you to the major components of digital games and game development. You'll learn about what is needed to make a game, about asset creation, project management methodology and pipelines, pitching game ideas and theories exploring what games are and how they engage players. You'll develop specialist skills relevant to your chosen route and practice those skills in cross disciplinary groups where you'll pitch a game concept to tutors and make a game together.
- Game development - principles, roles and commercial context
- Reading games - concepts. theories and approaches to game analysis
- Route module - developing technical skills through practice
With greater confidence in your various skills, in your second year, you'll tackle a larger game project, working in a multi-skilled group, as occurs in professional game development. Made over the entire year, this extended project will allow you to research and experiment with various approaches and create innovative features. You'll investigate theoretical strategies to player experience and will learn more about the games industry, what currently drives game development and trends from visiting industry professionals. You'll continue to develop your specialist skills to inform your game making practice.
The Major Project lies at the heart of year three, which sees you work in teams to produce a completed, potentially publishable game, as well as complete a smaller personal game project. You'll pitch those games to industry professionals, who will provide feedback on the work. You'll research a topic relevant to your game project and write an essay investigating the topic through the lens of theory. You'll also benefit from an industry mentor to sharpen your insight into working in the game industry and help you build contacts for your career after graduation.
- Games as a culture - engage in the place of games in culture, from ethics to representation
- Major game project - the majority of this year is the building of a potentially publishable game project by your team
- Professional practice - learn about working in the sector and how to establish an indie games company through industry mentoring
Our game development studios house the latest technology
- Modern Development PCs equipped for game creation in our teaching spaces and studios
- lndustry-standard game engines including Unity and Unreal 4
- lndustry standard software including Zbrush, Blender and Adobe Suite
You n be taught by a dedicated team of game practitioners and academics. Collectively, their experience spans roles at Square-Enix, lo-lnteractive, Riot Games, ZeniMax/Bathesda, Blizzard Entertainment and Octopus 8 Studios, having worked on titles such as Hitman, League of Legends, World of Warcraft and Final Fantasy XII. You'll also benefit from their extensive research expertise and pioneering approaches to game studies.
Teamwork features heavily to reflect industry operations. Game making is the primary form of assessment.
- Continuous assessment with no formal examinations
- Visual, verbal and written assignments
- Portfolio of project work
We anticipate that graduates will work within the games industry, either working within established studios or as self-employed game developers in the following roles (dependent on route):
- Audio Producer
- Game/Level Designer
- Technical Artist
- Postgraduate research
- Digital media industry