Informatics Video Game Design Courses

NEW FOR FA2018! INFO 403: Game Design- Virtual Worlds. Instructor is Dan Cermak.   CRN = 70674.  Tues/Thurs, 3:30 – 4:45 pm in 2078 NHB.
Top Down Video Game Design: The emphasis of this course is on developing an understanding of top down video game design using the various design methodologies and tools introduced in class.  Students will form small groups (4-6) and work on their own design within a selected genre (to be determined at the beginning of the semester).  Areas of focus include high level design vision, audience evaluation, User Interface and its impact on the design, iteration of a series of design documents (high, medium and low level) and the team dynamics of communication, critique and integration.  The goal of the class is to have the small teams use the concepts and the tools taught in class to create a complete design document that will be cataloged.   Sophomore level or above.

NEW FOR FA2018! INFO 490 DC:  The Video Game Development Process.  Instructor is Dan Cermak.   CRN = 70697.  Tues/Thurs, 5 – 6:30 pm in 2078 NHB.
The emphasis of this course is understanding the video game development process as seen in current Game Studios. The course will focus on key elements of the process including each phase of the development timeline, scheduling, prototyping, iteration, QA, game builds and player research. Students will form small teams (4-6 with the goal of using the concepts taught in class to create a video game from a catalog of pre-existing designs. Considering the limited time frame of the semester, the state of the final product is not as important as understanding the game develop cycle. Prerequisites: Knowledge of a programming engine (preferably Unity).  Sophomore level or above.

NEW FOR FA2018! INFO 490 A: Makerspace Studio 2.  Instructor is Emilie Butt.  CRN = 65245.  Wed 3 – 5:50 pm in the FabLab.
This course is a foray into game studies via makerspace production mediums. Students will study the role of play, tinkering and gaming in design, research and innovation and be challenged to learn a variety of makerspace production tools and techniques to create games. This course will include three major components (1) physical board game design, (2) introductory computer game design and (3) investigation into the narrative themes, artistic production, interaction mechanics and culture that make games engaging. Class will meet in the CU Community Fab Lab in Art Annex II. Students who have taken a makerspace class before are encouraged to enroll. This section is for undergraduate students only.   Section AG (CRN 68913) is for graduate students.

INFO 490 JP: Designing and Programming Text Based Games and Simulations.  Instructor is Judith Pintar.  CRN 65396.  Wed 12:00 – 2:20 pm in 172 Armory.
In this course, you will be introduced to the “design work” of game authoring, and will apply these theoretical ideas to specific programming practices and skills. You will become proficient in Inform 7, a programming language and design system for interactive fiction (IF), and text-based computer games and simulations. By the end of the semester you will have developed a game or literary work of IF, and made a substantive contribution to a team-written, historical simulation project, dramatically recreating a key moment in Illinois history. This class meets with CWL 461 JP. No prior programming knowledge is required for students to be successful in the course. Students will be expected to bring a laptop to class. Sophomore level or above.