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Session: 2022/23

Last modified: 21/07/2022 08:40:13

Title of Module: Intro to Games Development

Code: COMP07028 SCQF Level: 7
(Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework)
Credit Points: 20 ECTS: 10
(European Credit Transfer Scheme)
School:School of Computing, Engineering and Physical Sciences
Module Co-ordinator:Thomas  Hainey

Summary of Module

This is a core first year module for the undergraduate degree programme in Computer Games Development and an optional module for the Computer Animation Arts programme.  This module will introduce various aspects associated with the construction of computer games including rudimentary terminology, production of games design documents, psychology of play and motivation for players playing computer games, what makes a good game, game mechanics, computer games history from the 1940's to the present, games design, story narrative, testing and games development lifecycle models.  The students will work on their own or in a group of two, supported by tutorials, developing design documents for game ideas of their own choice. 

The students will develop a games design document utilising a template and a small game implementation using a game development environment. The module will focus on Game Maker Studio and Unreal allowing them to experience and see aspects of programming via blueprints and scripting as well as game flow and balance to allow production of a small show reel of their work that will allow a playthrough, critical reflection and descriptive commentary to boost their Porfolio and bolster their understanding of producing evidence for future modules. The module will develop soft skills such as presentation skills, critical reflection and problem-solving skills as well as visualisation of programming principles.  The module will adhere to the UWS Curriculum framework and TIGA accreditation by being student centric utilising industry standard tools and pedagogies for the diverse group of students and the two cohorts.  

  • This module embeds the key "I am UWS" graduate attributes and in particular: Universal(Critical Thinking, Analytical, Inquiry), Work Ready(Digitally Literate, Problem-solver), Successful(Creative, Imaginative).

  • The module will be flexible and hybrid where class activities will be a combination of remote, on-campus, recorded and live interactive sessions utilising the innovative VLE of UWS.

  • The module will recognise the diversity of the student body in both cohorts and provide adaptive and permutational assessments to support the learning of individual students by allowing them to pursue their interests.

  • Authentic assessment will be integrated by the encapsulation of soft skills and allow students to present their game ideas for peer review.

Module Delivery Method
Face-To-FaceBlendedFully OnlineHybridCHybridOWork-based Learning
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Term used to describe the traditional classroom environment where the students and the lecturer meet synchronously in the same room for the whole provision.

A mode of delivery of a module or a programme that involves online and face-to-face delivery of learning, teaching and assessment activities, student support and feedback. A programme may be considered “blended” if it includes a combination of face-to-face, online and blended modules. If an online programme has any compulsory face-to-face and campus elements it must be described as blended with clearly articulated delivery information to manage student expectations

Fully Online
Instruction that is solely delivered by web-based or internet-based technologies. This term is used to describe the previously used terms distance learning and e learning.

Online with mandatory face-to-face learning on Campus

Online with optional face-to-face learning on Campus

Work-based Learning
Learning activities where the main location for the learning experience is in the workplace.

Campus(es) for Module Delivery
The module will normally be offered on the following campuses / or by Distance/Online Learning: (Provided viable student numbers permit)
Paisley:Ayr:Dumfries:Lanarkshire:London:Distance/Online Learning:Other:
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Term(s) for Module Delivery
(Provided viable student numbers permit).
Term 1check markTerm 2


Term 3


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Learning Outcomes: (maximum of 5 statements)

On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:

L1. Create a games design document

L2. Create a game or level using a Games Engine

L3. Present the game in a show reel with critical and descriptive commentary or a playthrough and submit it for peer assessment

L4. Demonstrate a basic knowledge of the History of Computer Games

Employability Skills and Personal Development Planning (PDP) Skills
SCQF Headings During completion of this module, there will be an opportunity to achieve core skills in:
Knowledge and Understanding (K and U) SCQF Level 7.

A broad understanding of the issues relating to computer games development from idea, through design to product. This also includes computer games history, computer games design, Psychology of play, game mechanics, development lifecycles and testing. There will be a class related activity series on Computer Games History from the 1940's to the present.

Practice: Applied Knowledge and Understanding SCQF Level 7.

Produce a games design document and implement a small prototype game or level in a game engine selected after appropriately following a number of tutorials.

Generic Cognitive skills SCQF Level 7.

Integrate ideas form class activities and VLE materials presented to create a good game in terms of level design, character design, genre, game objects, game mechanics and the utilisation of a games-development lifecycle.

Communication, ICT and Numeracy Skills SCQF Level 7.

Create a document(s) using shared document editing software.
Take part in demonstrating/presenting a game(s)
Produce a reflective/descriptive show reel for portfolio.

Autonomy, Accountability and Working with others SCQF Level 7.

Work with others to create, discuss, develop and select game ideas.
Attend meetings with tutor at agreed times.
Demonstrate completed game(s) to peers.
Demonstrate historical knowledge of Computer Games by completing small interactive quizzes that will contribute to overall grade(s).

Pre-requisites: Before undertaking this module the student should have undertaken the following:
Module Code:
Module Title:
Co-requisitesModule Code:
Module Title:

* Indicates that module descriptor is not published.

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Learning and Teaching
There will be a scheduled class activity time for one hour per week which will be recorded to cater for synchronous and asynchronous delivery and adhere to the UWS Curriculum Framework of being flexible and hybrid. During these classes the students will be presented with a range of material: a discussion on a current games-related topic, slides on knowledge related to an area of games development, and general discussions on how the class is progressing. In practice this class tends to be continued in corridor, coffee-bar and lecturer-room informal conversations in order to create an early ambiance with new students and to get them thinking more widely round this broad subject when on-campus circumstances permit. There has also been a small interactive class test implemented in AULA to test Historical aspects of video games based on student feedback.

Students will complete a games design document, prototype a level or game in Game Maker or Unreal which will then be presented to peers. There will also be interactive quizzes on the History of Computer Games that will incrementally, continuously and iteratively and interactively assessed.
Learning Activities
During completion of this module, the learning activities undertaken to achieve the module learning outcomes are stated below:
Student Learning Hours
(Normally totalling 200 hours):
(Note: Learning hours include both contact hours and hours spent on other learning activities)
Lecture/Core Content Delivery24
Laboratory/Practical Demonstration/Workshop24
Independent Study152
Lecture/Core Content Delivery0
200 Hours Total

**Indicative Resources: (eg. Core text, journals, internet access)

The following materials form essential underpinning for the module content and ultimately for the learning outcomes:

Newman, J. & Simons, I. (2007) 100 Video Games, BFI Paperbacks (£12 or less)

Kent, S.L. (2002) The Ultimate History of Video Games, PrimaLife Publishing (£15 or less)

Cordone, R. (2019). Unreal Engine 4 Game Development Quick Start Guide: Programming professional 3D games with Unreal Engine 4 Paperback.

Students will require access to computing facilities and software suitable for the practical tasks (a scripted game development package, an online shared document editing package.) These will most likely be Game Maker 8.1 Lite and Unreal Engine which are freely downloadable.

Hill-Whittall, R. (2015). The Indie Game Developer Handbook Paperback – Illustrated.

(**N.B. Although reading lists should include current publications, students are advised (particularly for material marked with an asterisk*) to wait until the start of session for confirmation of the most up-to-date material)

Engagement Requirements

In line with the Academic Engagement Procedure, Students are defined as academically engaged if they are regularly engaged with timetabled teaching sessions, course-related learning resources including those in the Library and on the relevant learning platform, and complete assessments and submit these on time. Please refer to the Academic Engagement Procedure at the following link: Academic engagement procedure

Where a module has Professional, Statutory or Regulatory Body requirements these will be listed here:
For the purposes of this module, academic engagement equates to the following:
Students are expected to access videos and other class materials through the VLE, complete tutorial exercises and lab exercise and meet submission deadlines, failure to do so will be regarded as an indicator of disengagement with the module. Disengagement from the module is defined as not having interacted within a 4 week period. If this happens then contact will be attempted for conversation about circumstances.

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Supplemental Information

Programme BoardComputing
Assessment Results (Pass/Fail) No
Subject PanelCreative Computing
ModeratorDr. Gavin Baxter
External ExaminerN Whitton
Accreditation DetailsThis module is accredited by BCS as part of a number of specified programmes. It is also accredited by Skillset as part of BSc (Hons) Computer Games Technology
Version Number


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Assessment: (also refer to Assessment Outcomes Grids below)
Creation of design document for a game.
Creation and demonstration of a game implementation.
Complete a show reel presentation of a game idea or a live one.
(N.B. (i) Assessment Outcomes Grids for the module (one for each component) can be found below which clearly demonstrate how the learning outcomes of the module will be assessed.
(ii) An indicative schedule listing approximate times within the academic calendar when assessment is likely to feature will be provided within the Student Handbook.)

Assessment Outcome Grids (Footnote A.)

Component 1
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Learning Outcome (4) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Design/ Diagram/ Drawing/ Photograph/ Sketchcheck mark   400

Component 2
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Learning Outcome (4) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Creative output/ Audiotapes/ Videotapes/ Games/ Simulations check markcheck mark 500

Component 3
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Learning Outcome (4) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Presentation   check mark100
Combined Total For All Components100% 0 hours

A. Referred to within Assessment Section above
B. Identified in the Learning Outcome Section above

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  1. More than one assessment method can be used to assess individual learning outcomes.
  2. Schools are responsible for determining student contact hours. Please refer to University Policy on contact hours (extract contained within section 10 of the Module Descriptor guidance note).
    This will normally be variable across Schools, dependent on Programmes &/or Professional requirements.

Equality and Diversity
This module is appropriate for any student. When a student discloses a disability, or if a tutor is concerned about a student, the tutor in consultation with the School Enabling Support co-ordinator will agree the appropriate adjustments to be made.
UWS Equality and Diversity Policy
(N.B. Every effort will be made by the University to accommodate any equality and diversity issues brought to the attention of the School)

2014 University of the West of Scotland

University of the West of Scotland is a Registered Scottish Charity.

Charity number SC002520.