CSC 281 - Foundations of Interactive Game Design

Catalog Description:
Surveys history, technology, narrative, ethics, and design of interactive computer games. Work in teams to develop novel game designs and computer games. Introduction to the interplay of narrative, technology, rule systems, play and culture in the creation of interactive games. Programming experience not required. Enrollment restricted to students with at least sophomore status.
Contact Hours: Prerequisites: None
Co-requisites: None
Restrictions: None
Coordinator: Dr. Alexander Card
Textbook: None

Course Outcomes:
At the conclusion of this course, students should be able to

  1. Delineate issues in the design of computer games, including:
    • Games as systems of rules involving concepts such as emergent systems, rules and their relationship with uncertainty, the role of game rules in the creation and manipulation of conflict.
    • Games as systems of play, including the development of meaningful play, simulation and play, narrative and social play.
    • Games as cultural systems, including games as cultural representations, gender issues and games, games and violence and games as ethical systems.
  2. Discuss the concepts and apply the skills needed to formulate novel game concepts and implement the ideas in a game built on top of an existing game creation toolkit. This will involve:
    • Writing specifications for games based on design concepts.
    • Using storyboards and flowcharts to represent game play and the control of game entities.
    • Specifying algorithms for control of game play based on designs.
    • Using game creation tool kits to build and test games


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