Games Production BSc module details

Year one | Year two | Year three

Year one

Block 1: Game Design & Development

This module covers the basic elements involved in the architecture and design of computer games software from a high-level perspective. It describes the building blocks of a typical game and introduces a range of design aspects which contribute to an effective global game experience. The module also involves the students implementing their designs and developing simple games which illustrate a range of design features by using industry standard tools to prototype basic game ideas and functionality. For this purpose, a high-level games development system will be used and students will learn how to add extra functionality using an associated script-programming language.

Block 2: Markup Languages & Scripting

covers the basics of Object Oriented Programming inside a Game Engine architecture. The module will focus on C#, Python and JavaScript. You will understand the basics of programming inside Unity3D and Unreal, where a preset array of methods exist for Shader Programming, Physics and Interaction Events.

Block 3: Maths & Computer Systems

This module provides a foundation in computer architecture and operating systems with a specific emphasis on their security. Students will learn about computer hardware, software, operating systems, and demonstrate practical knowledge of these during lab sessions. Studying this module student will be able to relate the abstract concepts of logic and number systems to their concrete representation on real machines and identify the security risks in common configurations of computer operating systems and suggest appropriate mitigations. In the practical lab sessions students will also learn to develop shell scripts.

Block 4: C++ Fundamentals

This module provides an introduction into the basic aspects of writing computer programs in the C++ language. The module covers three areas: input/output through console and files, storage of data in computer memory through primitive variables, arrays, pointers and vectors and algorithm design strategies and implementation of algorithms.

Year two

Block 1: 3D Pipeline Fundamentals

Covers the fundamental principles, practice, and context of interactive 3D modelling, rendering and animation. This is approached in three distinct ways. The students will take a vocational tour of the 3D modelling pipeline using a professional toolchain. The theory underpinning these tools is explored in a more formal mathematical way. Students will explore a subset of techniques in more detail. The module also focuses on 3D modelling workflow. Time will then be spent on developing a practical knowledge and understanding of the mathematics demonstrated on the module so far. The students then move on to exploring the creation of 3D assets in more depth. A number of techniques, such material creation, modelling, rigging and animation will be explored in more fine-grained detail within industry standard workflows.

Block 2: Mobile Games and AI for Simulation

Enhances your understanding of the mobile games industry. You will develop and deploy a mobile game from concept to deployment, using the game engine Unity3D. The emphasis is on meeting quality benchmarks, understanding the need for portability across devices and the issues arising from a reduction in resources. The native pathfinding system in Unity3D, known as the NavMesh navigation system is also covered, as well as generic AI algorithms and concepts. You will understand how AI forms the basis of a user’s interaction with the non-scripted interaction events and the ‘mob’ and ‘swarming’ behaviour in a game, as well as how AI is used to govern the behaviour of non-PC characters and to enhance the user’s experience of immersion in games.

Block 3: Progressive Game Engines & Scripting

Students will study more industry leading game engines, such as Unreal. Students will also learn about the concept of visual scripting. At this point, students will have used other game engines, so learning how to move quickly between them is an important skill. This module is a comprehensive overview of industry leading game engines, such as Unreal engine, in terms of interface and prototyping.

Block 4: Game Development Team Project

This module aims to give students the opportunity to combine the skills and knowledge gained throughout the programme thus far and use them towards design and development of a game. With a strong emphasis on Agile development and project management, students are expected to work together in teams to design and develop a game, based on a set of discrete areas. Students will learn about working collaboratively on a game project, delegating tasks and managing time in a responsible manner, mirroring the culture of a professional game development team.

Year three

Block 1: Advanced Game Engine Application

This module gives you a more advanced overview of Unreal, covering Blueprints and C++ Programming to give you the skills you need to create and evaluate games made in Unreal. You will learn to discern when to make changes to the architecture of the engine, without unnecessary programming. You will also explore Normal Mapping and Materials and Lighting.

Block 2: Audio & QA for Games

Sound Design is an important aspect of Games Development, with most game engines offering off-the-shelf functionality for modelling effects such as reverberation, distance from source and echoing. This module will teach students to master such effects in practice, as well as the best ways to use such effects in a game, to enhance immersion and interactivity for a prospective user. Part of the module will focus on audio management and implantation in games using game engines with the use of external audio management tools. This module will also cover effective approaches to testing and debugging games.

Block 3: Advanced 3D Workflow & Design

This module covers advanced 3D modelling and animation techniques for set design, architecture, and environments as well as Photorealism, advanced simulation and the integration of 3D in the games industry. Students on this module will examine the design and development of models for sophisticated animation, digital sets, advanced simulation and advanced lighting. This may also include the use of production techniques such as architectural modelling and recreation, advanced modelling and animation techniques, motion capture and performance capture, photogrammetry, advanced rendering, and 3D compositing. This will also include the use appropriate industry standard game engines, such as Unity and/or Unreal.

Block 4: Game Development Project

This module gives you the opportunity to make a short game using an engine of your choice, such as Unity3D, Unreal, CryEngine or GODOT.