GAME DESIGN

 

Game Design Specialization

Serious about game play and interactive experiences? So are we! The Game Design program is developed and taught by seasoned game industry veterans who have vast experience, skills, leadership, and inside-track know-how in game design, development and publishing. Learn the multidisciplinary skills and processes needed to cultivate a game from inception to execution to distribution to the gamer’s hands. Work shoulder to shoulder with like-minded students who are as passionate and dedicated as you are. Connect with industry professionals in existing companies or budding game designers and developers.

Design, Programming, Art, and Music are all part of well-rounded games. We teach the skills and principles, and you’ll put it all to work with our state-of-the-art equipment and software. Here, your imagination is the limit!

 

What does a game designer DO?

Game Designers have a very important role in creating today’s game play and interactivity of video games. The Game Designers devise the player’s core experience and what a game consists of and how it plays. They plan, define and make all the elements of a game come alive from its core mechanic and structure; systems and system dynamics; rules; procedures; premise and setting; story flow and dramatic arc; characters; the interactive objects, props, vehicles, and devices available to the characters; interface and feedback design; methods of winning and losing the game; social interaction; modes of play, and much more.
Once the game is devised via a concept, pitch and game design document, the Game Designer communicates this to the rest of the development team who create the art/animation/audio assets and computer code that allow the game to be played. Sometimes the Game Designer comes up with the game’s premise. More often, most of the core ingredients are already defined and designers focus on making that concept of the core player experience, layout and progression come alive by creating the best game using these elements within a certain budget and timescale.

All of this is created through specific computer software in which the designer will input level design and computer scripting, which is then processed by the software to generate commands, events, objects and characters that players interact with. Game Designers should have a deep understanding of the capabilities and benefits of different software engines, technologies, techniques and development processes appropriate to each hardware platforms e.g. PC, mobile, tablet, console, VR, AR, etc.

During development, the Game Designer makes adjustments to the original specification for the game to respond to technical constraints which have been identified and to incorporate new programming and art creation methods developed by the team. They work closely with the QA and Play Testers to play the game, receiving constructive game play criticism and in making sure that they understand what is expected of the finished product.

Game Designers are employed by development studios, both independent and publisher-owned. The game design process is usually shared between a number of different people, overseen by a Lead Designer and Creative Director.

 

Median pay: $79,900

Top pay: $115,000

10-year job growth: 19%

– Best Jobs in America (2015)
CNN Money
More info from the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) at theesa.com

 

 

GAME DESIGN

Game Design Associates Degree

Semester 1

Course Number Description Credits
GAME 1270 Intro to Game Design & Development 2
GAME 1475 2D Design for Games 4
ARTV 1445 3D Modeling and Rendering I 4
SPCH or EDUC 1300 ^ Oral Communication or * Effective Learning: Strategies for College Success 3
Total Hours:13

Semester 2

Course Number Description Credits
GAME 1334 Video Game Art 3
GAME 2338 Game Testing 3
COSC 1336 Programming Fundamentals I 3
GAME 1406 Design and Creation of Games 4
Total Hours:13

Semester 3

Course Number Description Credits
GAME 2341 Scripting for Designers OR Game Scripting 3
Total Hours:3

Semester 4

Course Number Description Credits
GAME 1304 Level Design 3
GAME 1472 Design and Creation of Games II 4
GAME 2376 Video Game Production 3

ENGL 1301 English Composition 3
Total Hours:13

Semester 5

Course Number Description Credits
GAME 2371 Design & Creation of Games III 3
MATH Mathematics 3
Language, Philosophy & Culture/Creative Arts 3
PSYC 2301 or SOCI 1301 Intro to Psychology OR Intro to Sociology 3
Total Hours:12

Semester 6

Course Number Description Credits
GAME 2359 Game & Simulation Group Project 3
GAME 2308 Portfolio for Game Development 3
Total Hours:6

Total Hours for Degree:60

Game Design Certificate

Semester 1

Course Number Description Credits
GAME 1270 Intro to Game Design & Development 2
GAME 1475 2D Design for Games 4
ARTV 1445 3D Modeling and Rendering I 4
Total Hours:10

Semester 2

Course Number Description Credits
GAME 1334 Video Game Art 3
GAME 2338 Game Testing 3
COSC 1336 Programming Fundamentals I 3
GAME 1406 Design and Creation of Games 4
Total Hours:13

Semester 3

Course Number Description Credits
GAME 2341 Scripting for Designers OR Game Scripting 3
Total Hours:3

Semester 4

Course Number Description Credits
GAME 1304 Level Design 3
GAME 1472 Design and Creation of Games II 4
GAME 2376 Video Game Production 3

Total Hours:10

Semester 5

Course Number Description Credits
GAME 2371 Design & Creation of Games III 3
Total Hours:3

Semester 6

Course Number Description Credits
GAME 2359 Game & Simulation Group Project 3
GAME 2308 Portfolio for Game Development 3
Total Hours:6

Total Hours for Certificate:45

 

Note for the Associate Degree

Students must take one class (3 credit hours) in each of the areas indicated below. Written Communication (English) Select from the English Rhetoric/Composition area of the Core Curriculum. Oral Communication Select a course with the SPCH rubric from the Communications area of the Core Curriculum. Mathematics Select from the Mathematics area of the Core Curriculum. Humanities/Visual & Performing Arts Select from the Humanities or Visual & Performing Arts areas of the Core Curriculum or from the foreign language courses in the Communications area of the Core Curriculum. Social and Behavioral Sciences Select from the History, Government or other Social & Behavioral Sciences areas of the Core Curriculum.

Semester 1
Course Number Description Credits
ARTV 1270 Introduction to Game design and Development 2
ARTV 1475 2D Design for Games 4
ARTV 1445 3D Modeling and Rendering 1 4
SPCH or EDUC 1300 * Oral Communication or  Effective Learning: Strategies for College Success 3
Total Hours: 13
Semester 2
Course Number Description Credits
GAME 1334 Video Game Art I 3
GAME 2338 Game Testing 3
COSC 1315 Fundamentals of Programming I 3
GAME 1406 Design & Creation of Games I 4
Total Hours: 13
Semester 3
Course Number Description Credits
GAME 1377 OR GAME 2341 Scripting for Designers OR Game Scripting 3
Total Hours: 3
Semester 4
Course Number Description Credits
GAME 1304 Level Design 3
**GAME 2309 Design & Creation of Games II 3
GAME 2376 Video Game Production 3
 ENGL 1301 English Composition 3
Total Hours: 13
Semester 5
Course Number Description Credits
** GAME 2371 Design and Creation of Games III 3
MATH *Mathematics 3
*Language, Philosophy, and Culture/Creative Arts 3
PSYC 2301 or SOCI 1301 Intro to Psychology or Intro to Sociology 3
Total Hours: 12
Semester 6
Course Number Description Credits
** GAME 2359 Game & Simulation Group Project 3
** # GAME 2308 Portfolio for Game Development 3
Total Hours: 6
Total Hours for Degree: 60

# Capstone Course. Special Approval Required
* Select from the appropriate section of the ACC General Education course list. General Education core classes are listed above.
** These courses are only offered once a year in the semester indicated. Please plan prerequisite courses accordingly.
*** First-time at ACC students with fewer than 12 SCH (semester credit hours) of successful college credit must take EDUC 1300.
All others take SPCH 1321 Business & Professional Speaking.

Semester 1
Course Number Description Credits
ARTV 1270 Introduction to Game design and Development 2
ARTV 1475 2D Design for Games 4
ARTV 1445 3D Modeling and Rendering I 4
Total Hours: 10
Semester 2
Course Number Description Credits
GAME 1334 Video Game Art I 3
GAME 2338 Game Testing 3
COSC 1315 Fundamentals of Programming I 3
GAME 1406 Design & Creation of Games I 4
Total Hours: 13
Semester 3
Course Number Description Credits
GAME 1377 OR GAME 2341 Scripting for Designers OR Game Scripting 3
Total Hours: 3
Semester 4
Course Number Description Credits
GAME 1304 Level Design 3
**GAME1472 Design & Creation of Games II 3
GAME 2376 Video Game Production 3
Total Hours: 13
Semester 5
Course Number Description Credits
** GAME 2371 Design and Creation of Games III 3
Total Hours: 3
Semester 6
Course Number Description Credits
** GAME 2359 Game & Simulation Group Project 3
** # GAME 2308 Portfolio for Game Development 3
Total Hours: 6
Total Hours for Degree: 60
Garry Gaber

Garry Gaber

Professor, Department Chair

Garry has worked for over 20 years in the game industry for companies such as LucasArts. He is the owner of Escape Hatch Entertainment.

Kalani Streicher

Kalani Streicher

Professor

Kalani is an accomplished veteran in the games industry with over 25+ years experience. He designed and produced award-winning games during LucasArts’ Golden Years, and is the Founder of Kalani Games.

Randy Polk

Randy Polk

Adunct Professor

Randy is the owner of Meta 3D Studios in Austin with 18 years of 2D, 3D and interactive development experience.

Vernon Reed

Vernon Reed

Adjunct Professor

Vernon has decades of valuable experience in art, education and digital media in Austin and abroad.

Johnny Luce

Johnny Luce

Adjunct Professor

Johnny is an innovative Senior Designer and Creative Manager with more than 17 years of experience in interactive media and data visualization.

Johnathon Vought

Johnathon Vought

Adjunct Professor

Jonathan has been in entertainment for more than 10 years with tv, games, and visual effects doing art. He has vast experience as a producer, artist, and teacher.

Rich Wilson

Rich Wilson

Adjunct Professor

Rich has over a decade’s experience as a designer at studios such as Vigil and Arkane and as an educator.

New Students should get advised today!

 

Come study with us and become part of our diverse community. We can help you reach your career goals with affordable, hands-on training. Classes are held at Northridge and Highland Campuses and include evening and distance learning courses. With small class sizes and one computer per student in digital classes, the Game Design, Game Art, Animation, and Motion Graphics Department offers an outstanding and accessible educational experience. Students wishing to enter any of our programs of study are not required to have art, design or computer experience, although it is helpful. We hope you will bring enthusiasm to our classes as well as a willingness to communicate, to solve problems creatively, to work in teams, and to commit to learning. Classes in Game Design, Game Art, Animation, and Motion Graphics Department can benefit students just out of high school, people who’d like a change of career, and professionals in the industry who wish to update their creative and technical skills. You can take the first step in the registration process at ACC’s application page. And check out more information about becoming a VisCom student at our get started page.

Set up an Appointment now!

6 + 3 =

New Students should get advised today!

 

Come study with us and become part of our diverse community. We can help you reach your career goals with affordable, hands-on training. Classes are held at Northridge and Highland Campuses and include evening and distance learning courses. With small class sizes and one computer per student in digital classes, the Game Design, Game Art, Animation, and Motion Graphics Department offers an outstanding and accessible educational experience. Students wishing to enter any of our programs of study are not required to have art, design or computer experience, although it is helpful. We hope you will bring enthusiasm to our classes as well as a willingness to communicate, to solve problems creatively, to work in teams, and to commit to learning. Classes in Game Design, Game Art, Animation, and Motion Graphics Department can benefit students just out of high school, people who’d like a change of career, and professionals in the industry who wish to update their creative and technical skills. You can take the first step in the registration process at ACC’s application page. And check out more information about becoming a VisCom student at our get started page.

Set up an Appointment now!

8 + 12 =