Undergraduate Degree




DM2001 Game Design I

[Studio Contact Hours: 39 hours; Pre-requisites: NIL; Academic Unit: 3.0]




Academic Unit


3 AU

Course Description


Learning Objective

[Studio Contact Hours: 39 hours; Pre-requisites: NIL; Academic Unit: 3.0]


This course will introduce to the student the varied, complex and exciting world of game design. Core fundamental knowledge will be addressed enabling the student to become broadly familiar with the subject and to have a basic understanding of key practices, terminologies and histories. Students will be introduced to node-based and script-centred software with a view to developing basic game levels and core game mechanics and ideas.

Course Outline




• Intro to course

2 - 6

• Game structures and genres

• Mechanics & Strategies

• Narrative Structures

• Production Pipelines

• Technology & Gaming


• Mid Sem review of assignments

8 - 12

• Designing for restrictions

• Game Demos

• Casual Games

• Game Prototyping


• Final review of assignments

Learning Outcome

The students will know the basics of gaming, their development and construction, their place within the broader economic and historic context and the formal specifics of their gameplay.

Student Assessment

  1. Final Assessment: 30%

  2. Continuous Assessment: 70% (of which at least 15% is participation)

Continuous assessment components may include:

  • Studio-based exercises and projects

  • Individual, group and team-based assignments


      1. Katie Salen, Eric Zimmerman (Eds), The Game Design Reader: A Rules of Play, MIT Press

      2. Tracey Fullerton, Christopher Swain, Steven Hoffman, Game Design Workshop: Designing Prototyping and Playtesting Games, CMP Books

      3. John P Flynt, Ben Vinson, Simulation and Event Modeling for Game Developers, Thomson Course Technology

      4. Ed Byrne, Game Level Design, Charles River Media

      5. Aarseth, J Espen, Cybertext: Perspectives on Ergodic Literature. Johns Hopkins University Press

      6. Jack M Balkin, Beth Simone Noveck, The State of Play: Law, Games, and Virtual Worlds, New York University Press.