Game design classes in store for fall ’11

By on May 4, 2011

Quinnipiac students recently immersed themselves in the overwhelming course registration process for next semester. Now, Game Design and Development, to be launched next semester, is an additional option for students’ schedules.

The course plan is a pre-professional program which prepares students to go into the game design industry.

“Games are a huge part of modern life and we will study and create games beyond those merely for entertainment,” Ira Fay, a new professor for the course said. “We will explore educational games, social impact games, and new genres that haven’t yet been created.”

The curriculum will begin in the fall with two courses, GDD101 and GDD110. The first is a broad introductory course to the topic, whereas the latter reviews the research methods involved with game design.

Both courses will be taught by Fay and Gregory Garvey, an interactive digital design professor and one of the creators of the curriculum.

He worked for eight years as a professional game designer and developer at Disney, Activision and EA Games.

“You get knowledge on the beginnings of the video games industry with me,” Garvey said. “With Ira you get the most recent.”

Fay and Garvey will teach the introductory courses. Students will then take courses with a focus on either game design, “the design of the goals structure and rules of how a game is played,” or game development, “the creation of the resources for games such as characters, props, costumes, architecture, level, and sound,” according to the Quinnipiac program description.

The idea started approximately four years ago when students in an IDD315 class created a version of “Space Invaders.” Admissions encouraged the start of a game design and development course after hearing of the strong interest.

Freshman Gregory Rava was initially looking for game design during his college search. After hearing that the GDD curriculum would be implemented at Quinnipiac, he applied in hopes of becoming a part of it.

“The gaming industry is a growing field that features heavily in creativity, something that everyone should develop,” Rava said. “Offering courses in GDD will allow students who aren’t majoring in it to develop their creativity in an interesting and interactive way.”

The Princeton Review and Game Pro lists the top 50 game programs at universities across the nation, and a spot for Quinnipiac on that list has been Garvey’s goal.

“It was a coalescing of opinions and thoughts,” Garvey said.

The International Game Developers Association provides a general game design framework for academic institutions which was used as a model to form the curriculum.

 

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