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CSC3231 : Graphics for Games

  • Offered for Year: 2024/25
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Chris Holder
  • Owning School: Computing
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus

Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0
European Credit Transfer System


To give students an understanding of both the theories and practices that underpin good game design. Through this module, students will develop the knowledge and skills to apply several theoretical game design frameworks to the critical analysis of existing game systems, as well as to design, prototype, and implement their own advanced gameplay mechanic systems

Outline Of Syllabus

History – how the design of systems of play have evolved through ancient games, sports, tabletop games, early and modern video games.

Theory and critical analysis – understanding theories of play, Ludology and Narratology, Mechanics, Dynamics and Aesthetics, and how to apply them to the analysis of games designs.

Systems Design – combining and balancing multiple complex systems to create a coherent holistic experience.

Visual Communication – world building and level design, including techniques for pre-empting and guiding the player through visual cues.

Methodologies – commonly used approaches for implementing game designs, including iterative, top-down vs bottom-up, and player-centric vs systems-centric design paradigms.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion121:0012:00Preparation of Game Design Document
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture111:0011:00Traditional lectures PIP
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion61:006:00Preparation of Gameplay Prototype
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical112:0022:00Computer classroom PIP
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study381:0038:00Background reading
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study111:0011:00Lecture follow-up
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Techniques and theory are presented in lectures. Supervised practical classes on a PC cluster room provide experience of implementing game mechanic systems and design methodologies with help available.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Practical/lab report1M70Game Design Document - Report detailing gameplay systems of a novel game design (2000 – 3000 words)
Design/Creative proj1M30Gameplay Prototype - Gameplay prototype showcasing core mechanics (software equivalent of 1000 words)
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The Game Design Document is intended to demonstrate that students understand the game design process and can apply the theory taught in lectures, while the Gameplay Prototype demonstrates that students can successfully implement their game design ideas within a game engine.

Reading Lists