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Top 5 Online Game Design Courses

Students today have a huge selection of online coursework, not just offered by their own institutions. And those not enrolled in colleges have the opportunity to select from this huge repertoire, depending upon their interests and career goals. It’s a new age of learning.

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There are a lot of great careers that don’t actually require full college degrees. Instead, they require specific coursework and certifications. Such is the field of game design and development.

If you have game development as a career goal, you should look at projections for employment in this field, which are directly tied to the increasing demand for entertainment. There are lots of options for coursework and certifications. Here are 5 top courses, based on actual ratings by enrolls.

  • Game Design and Development – Michigan State University

This course is in the Coursera repertoire. It covers theoretical and practical factors of producing video games, using such tools as Unity 3D engine. Students will take a game idea through to prototype development and testing and then navigate the world of licensing and marketing.

This is an intermediate level class, so there should be some understanding of programming basics. There will be written assignments and quizzes during the course. To get the idea of how writing for such a course might look like, students can look through a variety of academic samples at Writing Universe. In the end, there will be a culminating project being that game production. Plan on spending about 5 hours a week for 6 months to complete the course.

  • C# Programming – Unity Game Development Certification

This is also from Coursera. The beauty of this Unity Game development is that students do not need coding experience. It is more conceptual in nature at first, but students will then develop their own games using the Unity engine as a required capstone project to complete the course and earn Unity Game Development Certification.

Students will be guided through C# programming language, create and test their games, and complete other assignments.

Students should plan on 5 hours a week over 5 months. Enrollee feedback is overwhelmingly positive.

  • Computer Science for Game Development by Harvard University

This course is offered through edX, a collaborative online learning environment by Harvard and MIT. This learning platform has a top reputation.

This game development course includes all of the following:

  • Study of classic and newer video games, to understand how they are developed
  • 2D and 3D graphics and animation
  • Using Unity and LOVE 2D engines, and several languages – C, Python, QL, JavaScript, and CSS
  • Installations of tools and software
  • Practice through assignments and projects that will result in certification

There are two 11-week sessions, requiring an average of 12 hours per week, but flexibility to work at your own pace.

  • Game Design Courses and Classes by Digital Defynd

This is a series of courses taught by recognized specialized experts. The focus of many of these courses is newer tools and software for story creation, character development, sketching, digital painting, etc. Crafting a storyline, even with newer tools that provide prompts and frameworks, can be a bit tough. Enrollees with good ideas may need to look for a good essay writers service to get their stories polished and ready for ultimate prototype development.

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Key components of Defynd’s course offerings include the following:

  • Using Stencyl to design a video game
  • Practical application of storytelling and character development, along with 3D modeling and prototype construction
  • Using augmented and virtual reality and artificial intelligence for stunning user experience.

There are free and fee-based options, but all are self-paced.

  • Complete C# Unity Developer 2D Course

This one is offered through Udemy and is for beginners. They will learn how to construct video games using Unity engine, and will also learn C# from the bottom up, something valuable to newbies. This is clearly a foundational course, and enrollees do not need any prior experience.

Plan on 62 hours, 380 lectures, and project assignments.

These Five

Is there other great gaming coursework? Of course. What seekers of gaming development careers must do is assess their current knowledge and skills, look carefully at offered courses, and choose those that will be most beneficial for them.

Author Bio: Mark Blackwood is a prolific researcher and contributing writer to a wide variety of blogs and journals. His repertoire of subject matter can only be described as huge. When not engaged in his primary work, Mark is a local band musician and advocate/volunteer for exotic animal rescue organizations.