Game Design Program Offers Hands-on experience in the Real World

When seeking a post-secondary game design program, not only is it important to consider what you will learn in the classroom but also the additional teaching methods used to enhance your learning. At Centennial College’s program for game design, which is officially known as Game Art and Design, not only do students attend lectures and hands-on labs, they are also exposed to valuable experience and meet industry contacts through studio visits, industry events and a field placement.

This field placement in particular is a standout feature of this program. As potential candidates for placement work, students are expected to send their portfolio to the company of their choice to show their work. This is part of the professional experience, and is standard protocol for those seeking internships and or jobs. Students are also expected to be proactive and seek out companies and relay the information to the coordinator, who will assist them in obtaining a placement. At the placement, they work alongside professionals to apply what they have learned and absorb new knowledge prior to graduation.

Speaking of the knowledge the students obtain through this program, the curriculum is focused on both the creative and business aspects of the gaming industry. As such, industry professionals and instructors developed courses with a forward-thinking approach towards the next wave of interactive games. In addition, the curriculum has been designed for optimum hands-on participation with an emphasis on both game design and creative story development skills. The hands-on approach to learning in labs simulates a real-world production setting. Among game design program courses are: Life Drawing, Anatomy and Construction, Perspective, Composition and Colour, 3D Modelling and Texturing, Character Design, Digital Painting, Unreal Editor, Integrated Media, Lighting and many others.

Applicants to the schools game design must possess at minimum an Ontario Secondary School Diploma or equivalent or be 19 years of age or older. They must also have completed the compulsory English 12C or U credit, a skills assessment or equivalent. Aside from academic requirements, students are asked to submit a mandatory portfolio that features 10 to 15 life drawings, sketches, paintings, sculptures or digitally produced artwork. Preference for the program will be given to applicants who can demonstrate some familiarity with one or more graphics applications such as Photoshop, Illustrator, 3DS Max or Maya. If students do not submit digital artwork, they will be tested to determine their level of computer proficiency.

With their knowledge, graduates of this program go on to work as: game concept artists, concept and environments and effects artists, character and level designers, character and 3D modelers/texture artists, and character animators. Each of these people plays an essential role to game design.

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