This course expands RU’s prior offerings in game design & development with more advanced topics in game design as well as delving into useful aspects of interaction and experience design. Through lectures, lab exercises, and project work, students will learn and gain experience with a variety of game design topics. Working together in teams, students will design, develop, and critically analyze several smaller games, each focused on applying the concepts that are discussed in class. Each of these exercises will differ in terms of either the team’s composition, the game’s scope, or the constraints that the instructors provide to guide the creation process.
In addition to readings we might share and recommend, there are also many helpful tutorials online, hosted by the makers of game engines like Unity, Unreal, and Godot.
Intended Learning Outcomes
Upon completion of the course, students should be able to:
Discuss game design, interaction design, player experience
Explain different methods for game design
Understand the roles and responsibilities required in a game’s production
Critically analyze given game designs and interaction designs
Conduct design sessions involving players
Develop focused game prototypes
Identify uses for game design outside of the games industry
Assess team health and their effect on it
Design game mechanics to achieve an intended experience
Analyze and evaluate game prototypes
Develop a game informed by past prototypes and research
Project Work: Design, Development, & Analysis
The term will consist of the development and analysis of a variety of different games, both in teams and as individuals. After completing work on an Analog Game and taking a deep dive into Level Design, students will propose and develop a larger game during the second half of the term (Final Game). Each deliverable is generally due at the end of the Timeframe shown in the table below. Specific due dates will be given during class meetings as each project is assigned. Much of the course work will be completed by students outside of class time, but many class meetings throughout the term will be dedicated to project work (“Labs”) with the course instructors on-hand to offer help and advice.
Please use Discord for posting questions regarding lectures or your projects, rather than sending us emails. That way we can build a shared repository of useful questions/answers (you can of course still send us emails, but consider first whether you can post things there instead).
Please note that attendance during all three weekly meetings is required. Please inform the instructors if this is hard for you for some reason, such as scheduling conflicts or sick leave.
The participation grade will be based on: (1) Attendance (during lectures, exercises and feedback sessions), and (2) Participation in online discussion. To the extent possible, this will also be based on how actively the student participates in in-class discussion (based activity in the lecture responses channel). The base participation grade will be calculated as 5 * (portion of meetings attended). The instructors can then add possible bonus points to this base grade based on a subjective evaluation of the student's participation throughout the semester (into which the online discussion may factor).
**NB: To pass the course, it is necessary to earn a grade of at least 50% (i.e., 5/10) across all Individual Work (see calculation and table above). If a student's Individual Work Grade is less than 50%, this grade will count for 100% of their grade for the course.
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