The MFA course is an advanced degree and prepares you for a career as both a video game composer and as a game sound designer, the kind of full-stack game audio professional that is increasingly in demand.
Scoring video games is rewarding and challenging but highly competitive.
Our real-world project based approach, tutored by working professional game composers and sound designers, is designed to help you compete at the highest level.
Being able to provide a complete audio service makes you much more employable.
The course will help you develop as a video games composer, raising your music to a new level, helping you find a voice and distinctive style of your own.
But then you go further and learn the technology and creative skills required to work as a video games sound designer, creating immersive audio worlds.
The course is project focused. We want you to feel like you’re already doing the job.
All your tutors are working professional video game composers and sound designers.
You will work on a inspiring range of games, including commercial releases, provided as part of your course materials. Y
ou will learn not only how to create inspiring interactive music and sound but also how to implement your audio inside the game using industry standard middleware like FMOD and WWise.
Whether you want to learn to compose for video games or are looking for a video game sound design course, our MFA will bring you real-world professional tuition you need to lay the solid foundations of a career in video game music and audio.
You will be uploading and downloading a large quantity of material so you should have access to a reliable broadband with a speed of at least 5Mbs or more.
We have found that the Google Chrome browser is the most compatible with the Adobe Connect webinar software we use which will also be an important part of your course. All your assignments are uploaded through the Student Portal on our website. This can also be accessed with any standard FTP client, for example CuteFTP on a PC or Transmit on a Mac.
You will need a computer, software and ancillary equipment (MIDI keyboard, monitors, hard drives both internal and external), Mac or PC, capable of producing professional quality music and audio, and recording equipment. This is the overriding principle and the following minimum technical specifications are given for guidance.
This is an intensive course with strict deadlines in order to mirror a real-world professional working environment. As such, students must be have acquired and be competent in the use of the minimum technical requirements prior to starting the course to get the most out of it. Students may be eligible for significant educational discounts.
DAW (Digital Audio Workstation):
We expect you to have a good knowledge of one computer based DAW:
You need to have a copy of the following programs but we do not expect you to know how to use them. The exact version number of this software is important, and the version we support may change. Full information on the current approved course software version is available through the VLE.
Recommended Additional Software:
*Subject to validation
The Msc Games Development course provides students with a higher-level understanding and direct professional experience through a multidisciplinary approach across commercial game projects.
This course is ideal for graduates who have completed our BA (Hons) Computer Games Design or BSc (Hons) Computer Games Programming undergraduates degree, as well as those who have graduated from other related technical and creative subject areas who are wanting to enter the video games industry.
We have collaborative partnerships in place with community organisations and employers including commercial and third sector organisations.
Students will be exposed to work on commercial games, providing them with an understanding of business and enterprise as well as preparing students for working within a commercial studio setting.
One of our modules allows students to link up with the Ipswich Waterfront Innovation Centre (IWIC), providing them with access to more facilities and covering a range of business-related topics in connection with games development.
Development Management (mandatory)
This module provides students with industry standard management methodologies and tools used to run team game developments.
Visual Scripting (mandatory)
In this module. students learn how to develop games using visual scripting tools at high and low levels, depending on their discipline and background.
Group Project 1 - Multiple Rapid Prototyping (mandatory)
For this group project, students concept and rapidly develop game ideas, learning how to work efficiently as a team.
Group Project 2 (mandatory)
In this module, students will work on a longer 12-week development project.
Business Development (mandatory)
This moduled covers a range of core business skills relevant to both the independent and large scale development studios. This will be delivered by the Ipswich Waterfront Innovation Centre (IWIC) where students will have access to the Entrepreneurial Programme as well as unlimited access to the IWIC facilities.
Final Project (mandatory)
The Final Project involves independent learning as an extended dissertation covering a detailed exploration of an element of the games industry.
Research Methods (mandatory)
In this module, students will learn rigorous academic and commercial research skills.
Work-based practice is embedded throughout the duration of the course. All modules will relate to work-based learning, relating to commercial management processes or understanding production within a working environment. This will enhance employability and give graduates a greater understanding of games development within the work place.
Graudates can progress in to a range of careers including: Game Programmer, Games Designer, Games Artist, Quality Assurance, Serious Games Developer and Gamification Developer to name a few.
The MSc Game Development course will have access to the Eclipse Suite where students can access the facilities on specific days for independent working and group projects.
Students can benefit from a dedicated lab, access to two other game development labs and a range of game development hardware including, Oculus Rift, Emotive EPOC+ Brain interface, Leap motion, Myo, Phidget components for building custom game controllers, a range of mobile phones and tablets to test your games on.
Students will also have access to a common room area for MSc students and a custom games cabinet in which to run student games.
The course will equip students with the skills to work within design, software and hardware development, product design and creation, and user testing such as behavioural modelling and a psychological understanding of interaction. Human Computer Interaction skills are also a common requirement for computer game companies.
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We educate designers who can articulate and develop cutting-edge practices in key areas of interaction design: tangible and sensor-based interaction, wearable and embodied interaction, game design, participatory design practices, critical design, social innovation and collaborative media development. Students approach these genres within a broad context that considers the social, political and ethical consequences of their designs. Our education is studio-based, bringing students into close contact with our design professors.
This is a one-year programme, which is also offered as the first year of a two-year programme providing a more well-rounded combination of design practice and academic research.
Interaction design is a rapidly changing discipline, and we maintain the relevance of our education by working with real-world design cases and outside clients that include local industry partners, as well as cultural and civic organisations. Navigating a shifting design landscape also requires the critical mindset of a scholar, and we foster reflective design by teaching research skills and involving students in active research projects.
Our programme was founded in 1998, making it one of the more established programmes of its kind. We focus on areas where our design and research excellence is internationally recognised: tangible and sensor-based interaction, wearable and embodied interaction, game design, participatory design practices, critical design, social innovation and collaborative media development.
Interaction design requires the fusion of multiple skill sets. We recruit students with different backgrounds – design, media, engineering, the arts, and social sciences – and focus our teaching on creating disciplinary synergy in the concrete design work.
The programme comprises full-time study for one academic year, divided into four courses starting with a studio-based introduction to multidisciplinary collaboration and mainstream interaction design. The next two courses address embodied interaction and collaborative media, two of our signature topics. The final course is a Master’s level graduation project.
Upon graduation, you are eligible for the second year of the two-year Master’s programme to learn more about interaction design research and theory. Read more about the two-year Master’s programme
The programme is based on a learning-by-doing pedagogy. This means that we encourage an iterative practice of experimentation and reflection. As teachers, we view ourselves as coaches guiding you in this process.
The programme is studio-based. You will also have access to computer labs, a materials workshop and a prototyping lab for electronics, sensor and microprocessor programming.
The primary method of learning is through group work in multidisciplinary teams with classmates and other stakeholders. Abilities to work in teams and with others – including user communities – are important parts of our curriculum, and several projects are organised to practice doing this.
With our humanistic approach, you will be practicing qualitative research approaches to support your design of tangible artefacts as well as digital and interactive services, systems and artefacts. We emphasize an understanding of people in their use situations.
Prototyping in the studio and real-world contexts is an integral part of becoming an interaction designer.
To practice reflective and experimental design activity, projects and courses integrate seminars and hands-on workshops introducing students to, among other things, ethnographic fieldwork, visualisation, low- and high-fidelity prototyping, microprocessor programming and video sketching, as well as evaluation of use qualities. All these practices are backed up by literature references and examples.
Your thesis project will be a combination of a design project and reflective writing that will involve communicating and discussing your design work. This is one result of a student's work in Thesis Project I.
Students have access to studio space, and we encourage a healthy studio culture. This is where we conduct group-work, seminars, workshops, presentations and discussions. Close by there is a well-equipped materials workshop and a physical prototyping lab for electronics and sensor work. Additionally, we often use the facilities at the MEDEA research centre for final presentations, exhibitions, seminars and programme-meetings.
Students enter the programme with different kinds of expertise, from art and design to engineering and social sciences. Upon graduation, you will have built a strong understanding of how your particular skills play a role in interaction design and how they combine with other specialities of fellow designers.
Most alumni move on to positions as interaction designers, user experience specialists or usability architects in the ICT, telecom and media industries. For some, this involves fine-tuning the interfaces and interactions of current products to users' needs; other interaction designers work on concept development for future products and services. Yet other alumni find their calling in strategic positions where the role of interaction design is considered in relation to market and business development.
Some interaction designers are also found in the role of change agents in public organisations and NGOs.