Games Theory and Business

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The Introduction to Video Games Industry, Design, and Development (IVGIDD) course is delivered in 4 separate parts.
Part 1. Games Theory and Business
Part 2. Game Design
Part 3. Game Development Tools
Part 4. Mobile Game Development

This is Part 1/4 of IVGIDD: Games Theory and Business.

In this part of IVGIDD, you will be introduced to some of the fundamentals of games theory, industry, and business.

General overview of the whole course and the 4 different parts

Games are one of the most exciting, fast-moving, and lucrative creative industries worldwide. In the last 15 years, the industry has matured and diversified. The most successful games are creative powerhouses that have revenue returns that far outstrip comparable products in other mediums. Examples include Apex Legends, Among Us, PUBG, Honor of Kings, GTA series, Angry Birds, Clash of Clans to name a few massive success stories.

How will you learn?

You will learn by watching videos, reading study materials, and completing module deliverables, including programming and game art-related tasks. In addition to a collection of videos that cover each topic in-depth, key assets will be provided for students to download.

Assignments and certificate

We assess your work, and in the development modules, we will give you some feedback. The different parts of the course will be assessed separately. During the course, you will be completing tests and quizzes and submitting your game designs and a full smartphone game. At the end of the course, you will earn a certificate of your studies.

What you will learn

There are several key disciplines people can specialise in, such as video game art, design, development, and games business. This course will provide a beginner's guide to hands-on games design and development as well as the industry. You will learn the basics of using the most popular professional tools of games development such as Unity, Visual Studio, Blender, and Krita. You will learn the fundamentals of procedural programming in the C# language and 3D modeling. You will be developing your own game designs, and playable games for PC and smartphones (Snake). The Games industry is such a diverse field, an endless source of subsectors; ideas, innovation, and jobs and roles.

Course contents

Part 1 Module 1. History of Games
This module will introduce you to the history of games. You will be introduced to 10 of probably the most significant video games of all time. There are thousands of great games but these 10 had special innovations presented at the time they were published.

Learning outcomes: You will learn about probably 10 of the most significant games that changed the industry.
Learning resources: There are two videos Part 1 and Part 2.
Assessment: You need to pass a quiz test.


Part 1 Module 2. Theory and Innovation in Games
This module will introduce you to game studies and different types of innovations in games. Throughout the history of computers and computer science, games have played a vital part in the innovation and development of new technologies in gaming and beyond.

Learning outcomes: The module will improve your general knowledge about theory and innovation in the games industry. You will learn about some basic theories applied to video games development.
Learning resources: Your main learning resource is the presentation provided. There is NO need to search for the internet for more information but there are references you might be interested in looking for further reading.
Assessment: You need to pass a quiz test.

Part 1 Module 3. Artificial Intelligence for Games
Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) is currently one of the most exciting topics all around the world. Many do not know that the video games industry has been at the forefront in developing science and applications, such as games using A.I. This module gives you an introduction to how A.I. is used in games by showcasing the theory behind A.I. for games and great examples.

Learning outcomes: You will learn the basic concepts of artificial intelligence for games by seeing examples of how A.I. is applied to some of the most famous games on earth.
Learning resources: There are 3 video lectures.
Assessment: Students will be tasked with a quiz test. You need to score a minimum of 80%, 12/15.


Part 1 Module 4. Games Industry and Analytics
The Video Games Industry has grown since the 90s to an industry worth more than 170 billion $ (2020). It is a bigger industry than movies, films, and music altogether. It is thanks to a lot of innovations in the industry as well excellent, creative people developing great games along with the history of approx. 50 years.

This module will introduce you to the games industry, game player behaviours, and data analytics. We try to give you an easy introduction to the terminology used in the games industry and also introduce you to a number of important game analytics topics (data science) that you should know before deciding what type of games you want to develop. At first, you probably want to like to develop games you like personally, but when it comes to a successful game you need to know the facts about the games industry and where is the best potential, and still like the game genre you work with.

It is important that you get to know at least the basics of the games industry even you would prefer to go into games programming or game art.

Learning outcomes: You will learn the basic concepts of the games industry, the terminology used as well as game player demographics and behaviours.
Learning resources: There is a presentation with some external materials.
Assessment: Students will be tasked with a quiz test. You need to score a minimum of 80%.

Part 1 Module 5. Production
Video games production is one of the most important parts of making a game of good quality and successful among your game players. In this module, we will go through the basics of video games production such as project life-cycles, production roles, and risks related to the project. You will learn about the complex and exciting role of a Producer. 

Learning outcomes:
1) Principles of production
2) Good foundational understanding of production terminology within games
3) How it can relate to your chosen role
Learning resources: There are 2 video lectures about video games production.
Assessment: Students will be tasked with a quiz test. You need to score a minimum of 80%, 8/10.

How to pass?

To pass this course, you will need to complete all the course tests. You will also need to give us some feedback at the end of the course. Once all those parts are completed and we have received your feedback, we will check all everything is completed and prepare your certificate. Please be patient, as it might take us about a week to email your certificate to you.

Who are my instructors?

Dr. Jan Storgårds is the Course Leader, entrepreneur, Director of CADGI (Cambridge Academy of Games and Innovation), and Cambridge Gamechanger ltd. He has over 25 years of experience working in the industry and academia with high technology companies and technology cluster development, including video games and gamification. He holds Dr.Sc. in information systems science in computer games development from Aalto University, Finland. Prior to his current role, he was a visiting research fellow at Cambridge Judge Business School (University of Cambridge) working with start-ups and early-stage technology companies including video games studios. In his prior role as Sector Lead for Creative and Digital Industries at Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge, his responsibility was to engage ARU with Cambridge's world-class technology cluster, including video games and gamification.

James Shepherd, CEO CypherdelicLimited. Double Baftaand Develop winning executive responsible for delivering multi-million selling products. At Microsoft, James created the Xbox One and Xbox live games community 'Upload', and the app, 'Upload Studio', generating a 6.5 million user base, and 10+ million views in the initial 12 month launch window. At Sony he had 6 years experience as director of a multi-project development studio, managing dev teams of up to 200 people, delivering triple 'A' products internally and externally on all PlayStation platforms, including, ‘Heavenly Sword’, (PS3,1.6m units, 79% Metacritic) and ‘LittleBigPlanet’, (PSP, 2.5m units, 87% Metacritic).

Matthew Dickson, CTO CypherdelicLimited. Over 10 years of coding experience on triple ‘A’ titles for Sony PlayStation, including ‘Killzone2’, ‘Little Big Planet PSP’ and ‘Heavenly Sword’. Matt published the I.O.S title: ‘SuperJackFruit’, including all art and game programming. Matt’s polymath expertise makes him ideally suited to delivering a games development course


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