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Where Can I Find Programming Courses on How To Make Video Games?

Video game development has become a sought-after skill and a mainstream career choice with the increasing popularity of video games. For this reason, video game programming courses are relatively easy to find. By taking such courses, you might develop the skills necessary to embark upon a number of careers in the gaming industry. Read on to learn more.

About Video Game Programming

Many degree programs offer courses in video game programming. The College Board (www.collegeboard.com) mentions several potential majors for future video game designers, including computer graphics, graphic design or animation and special effects. Listed below are some top-rated schools that offer video game programming courses that you may find valuable.

Important Facts About Video Game Programming Studies

Online Availability Some schools have courses available online
Prerequisites For future freshmen: High school diploma or equivalent and SAT/ACT scores
For graduate students: Bachelor's degree and typically a 3.0 GPA, some schools also require GRE scores
Common Courses Computer programming, game design, 3D animation
Possible Careers Include artificial intelligence programmers, game mechanic designers, graphics programmers, content designers, user interface programmers, digital artists and more
Median Salary (May 2018) $72,520 (for all multimedia artists and illustrators)*
Job Growth (2016-2026) 8% (for all multimedia artists and illustrators)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Rochester Institute of Technology

The Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) offers an extensive selection of game programming courses. Bachelor's and master's degrees are available in game design and development, and there's also a concentration in game programming. Course topics cover basic digital media production as well as the process of simulating human interaction between video game characters. Game design courses could encourage students to envision ideas for new video games while teaching game development strategies that meet industry standards. Some areas of focus include:

  • Level Design
  • Character Development
  • Online Gaming

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

With its Games and Simulation Arts and Science program, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute provides an in-depth look at the theory and logic behind game design. In its game design course, students analyze the psychological impact of role-playing and human-computer interaction from the user's point of view. This course attempts to discover the appeal of video games so that when designing and programming new games, you'll consider aspects that are engaging. Some topics covered in this course are:

  • Role Playing
  • System Dynamics
  • Psychologically-Appealing Concepts

University of California - Santa Cruz

At the University of California - Santa Cruz, students of related bachelor's degree programs can take gaming-related courses, such as music, storytelling, digital media and computer science as they pertain to video games. Those interested in computer programming courses can work collaboratively on group-based design projects and utilize state-of-the art design software. At UC - Santa Cruz, students majoring in computer game design focus on three areas:

  • Technical Design
  • Artistic Design
  • Narrative of the Game