Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Game Development

UM LEVEL 05 - Postgraduate Modular Diploma or Degree Course



DEPARTMENT Institute of Digital Games

DESCRIPTION This study-unit focuses on teaching practical game development skills through hands-on experience with a semester-long game project. Alongside the practical work, which will be structured and guided by the teachers both as technical experts (thus practically helping the team with technical difficulties) and as game producers (requesting changes, monitoring the production pipeline, keeping track of internal team dynamics and contribute to the solution of conflicts. The project period will be accompanied by several seminars on different game development topics and practices.

More aptly focusing on the goals and the contents of the study-unit, it is important to clarify that 'Game Development' primarily focuses on the hands-on development of games in ways that are analogous to the ways in which games are developed by small teams in the games industry.

The seminars on game development delivered,covers topics that are relative to game development as practiced in the industry, including (but not limited to): pitching an idea to an investor, concept development, project management and agile development, managing and updating design documentation, implementation-specific seminars on tools used in game development, user interaction, quality assurance, et cetera.

Study-Unit Aims:

The aims of the unit are as follows:
- To have the student transfer their theoretical knowledge of games into practical procedures and design/development decision;
- To verify the absorption of game design lexicon, procedures, etc;
- To enable students to organize, structure and distribute work independently;
- To make students more comfortable with presenting, discussing their work in pitch presentation, professional team meetings and industry-standard documentation;
- To enable students to meaningfully respond to the criticism and guidance of their supervisors;
- To stimulate self reflection and awareness of the processes involved in game development when it comes to design and production decisions;
- To enable students to constructively formulate and receive the feedback of peers.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- Demonstrate having absorbed game design lexicon, procedures, etc.;
- Organize, structure and distribute work;
- Meaningfully respond to the criticism and guidance of their supervisors;
- Constructively formulate and receive the feedback of peers.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- Use software tools and development methods appropriate to their roles;
    - For game designers: write functional design documents, game tuning and playtesting;
    - For artists: use 3D and 2D editing tools, create concept art, and integrate the assets into the game pipeline;
    - For programmers: use and script in game engines for different purposes (e.g. networking, game loops, enemy behavior etc.).

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

Jesse Schell, The Art of Game Design: a Book of Lenses, M&K, 2007.

Tutorials, papers, videos and articles will be provided by the lecturers during the course of the study-unit. (Also available online)

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Group Learning, Project, Seminar & Tutorial

Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Sept. Asst Session Weighting
Reflective Diary SEM2 Yes 15%
Classwork SEM2 No 25%
Project SEM2 Yes 60%



The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the description above applies to study-units available during the academic year 2023/4. It may be subject to change in subsequent years.