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Games Design and Development - BSc (Hons)

Course Code: US828


Level

8

Duration

4 Years

Department

Information Technology


CAO Points

265

Course Type

Undergraduate - CAO

Location

Thurles

This programme is designed to produce graduates with an in-depth knowledge of the essential aspects of games design and development. Students will learn the techniques for analysis, design and development of games for diverse platforms including mobile, handheld consoles, personal and tablet computers, games consoles and online games in a variety of computer programming languages. Students will produce game designs and implement these through a variety of game engines and frameworks using state of the art technology and specialised hardware.

TUS Thurles campus, a Digital Games Hub, is the home of Games Fleadh, one of Ireland’s most important games programming festivals. Our students take part in Games Fleadh throughout their 4 year degree and will design and develop games to be judges by Industry veterans. Our Games Design alumni have worked on AAA titles such as StarCraft, Wolfenstien, Guitar Hero and Call of Duty. Our campus enterprise centre facilitates and is host to game studios start-ups who are actively supported by Thurles Chamber Enterprise Centre business mentors. 

What are the entry requirements?

Leaving Certificate

A minimum of 2 H5 & 4 O6/H7 grades in six Leaving Certificate subjects, including Mathematics and English or Irish.

Contact: Admissions@LIT.ie

Mature Applicants

Mature student (i.e. 23 years of age on 1st January for admission in September) applicants must apply through the CAO on or before 1st February.

Contact: Admissions@LIT.ie

International Applicants

Non-EU applicants should apply directly to the International Office at TUS allowing plenty of time for completing the visa process. Applications for September start should be made by July 1st at the latest.

Contact: International@LIT.ie   

Who can I contact?

View our IT CAO presentation and Q&A session

Click here to view

What modules will I study?

  • Year 1

    Title: Computer Mathematics

    Credits: 5

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    This module is designed to provide the student with the fundamental mathematical concepts encountered in the study of a computing discipline. Topics covered are Arithmetic and Algebra, Indices and Logarithms, Number Systems and Logic.


    Title: Computer Organisation and Architecture

    Credits: 5

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    To introduce the fundamentals of the operation and internal structure of a computer system. Topics covered are Data Representation & Coding Systems, Digital Systems, Peripheral devices and Storage Technologies.


    Title: Data Essentials

    Credits: 5

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    This module aims to provide the learner with a solid foundation for those who work with data and databases. A fundamental understanding of basic concepts, design, and terminology will be gained. Topics covered are Types of Data, Database Design, Implementing a Database and Data Security.


    Title: Introduction to Programming

    Credits: 5

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    This module introduces the discipline, methodologies and techniques of computer programming using a modern programming language. Topics covered are Fundamental Data Types, Decisions Concept and Loops.


    Title: Interpersonal Skills

    Credits: 5

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    The learner will be able to communicate proficiently in a professional context. Topics covered Effective Oral and Written Communication skills, Giving Presentations and Learning Skills.


    Title: Introduction to Object Oriented Programming

    Credits: 5

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    This module introduces the learner to the principles of object-oriented programming. The creation and manipulation of classes and objects using an object-oriented programming language.  The topics covered are Introduction to Object Oriented Programming Concepts, OOP Testing and OOP API programming.


    Title: Mathematical Methods

    Credits: 5

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    This module is designed to provide the student with a foundation in several mathematical methodologies encountered in the study of a computing discipline.  Topics covered are Set Theory, Functions, Co-Ordinate Geometry and Matrices.ne.


    Title: Operating Systems Fundamentals

    Credits: 5

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    This module provides learners with an overview of the purpose, functions and structures of modern computer operating systems.  Topics covered OS Kernel, Processes, Device Handling, Storage, Security and Virtualisation.


    Title: Responsive Design and Web Development

    Credits: 5

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    This module will provide the learner with the skills required to design and develop interactive & responsive websites.  Topics covered Mobile First Design, Responsive Web Design, JavaScript and Publishing a Website.


    Title: Structured Programming

    Credits: 5

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    This module provides an in-depth analysis and implementation of Structured Programming concepts.  Topics covered are Functions, Array, Vectors, Pointers and Streams.


    Title: Structured Query Language Essentials

    Credits: 5

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    The students will learn SQL stands for Structured Query Language. SQL is the language used to work with relational databases.  Topics covered Data Manipulation, Data Definition and Data Control Language.


    Title: Web Development Fundamentals

    Credits: 5

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    This module will introduce the learner to the fundamentals involved in the development of web pages.  Topics covered are Fundamental Web Concepts, HTML5, CSS and Web Design Concepts and Principles.


  • Year 2

    Title: 2D Game Development

    Credits: 5

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    This module will develop learners’ programming abilities with a primary focus on 2D game development. The core elements include the development of a 2D game-based system, associated analysis design and development using an appropriate programming language and design patterns. On completion of this module, learners will appreciate how to implement a game using an OO programming language and incorporate media elements such as graphics and sound. The module will also strengthen game development skills to ensure programming skills of learners are adequate to support other modules on the program.


    Title: Agile Development Methods

    Credits: 5

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    This module introduces learners to the process of Software Development from an Agile perspective. It introduces the basics of the software development lifecycle and then focuses on the Agile methodology and Agile lifecycles. It also introduces UML model specification and development enabling them to utilise models for problem-solving in the context of the development lifecycle.


    Title: Algorithms For Game Development

    Credits: 5

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    This module provides an introduction to advanced topics in algorithms and data structures with particular applications to game design and development. In particular, the module will examine various algorithms and data structures from graph theory and computational geometry along with the study of issues relating to computational complexity.


    Title: Computer Graphics

    Credits: 5

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    This module introduces the basic concepts of computer graphics and raster-based methods. It also provides the necessary theoretical background for computer graphics and demonstrates the application of computer science to graphics. It also offers the opportunity for learners to formulate and implement applications of computer graphics. The module further allows learners to develop programming skills in computer graphics through programming assignments.


    Title: Data Structures & Algorithms

    Credits: 5

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    This module provides an introduction to data structures and algorithms for computer scientists. The module introduces a number of fundamental data structures, including arrays linked lists, stacks, queues, trees and hash tables. These are presented both abstractly, via the notion of Abstract Data Types, and concretely in terms of their implementation in an object-oriented framework. The data structures are discussed and analysed in terms of the efficiency of the basic operations they support and their application to program design problems. Consideration is given to important, fundamental algorithms for searching and sorting data.


    Title: Enterprise Applications Development

    Credits: 5

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    This module will provide the learner with the capability to develop small to medium-scale applications using industry-standard best practices and approaches. Learners will be exposed to the analysis, design and development of enterprise applications incorporating business objects and persistence systems.  Topics covered Client Server Programming, Server-Side Programming, Data Persistence, HCI and Application Testing.


    Title: Game Design

    Credits: 5

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    The aim of this module is to introduce the learner to the essential concepts of Game Design. This module will focus on developing the learner's abilities and awareness of game genres, games design, and ethical boundaries illustrating the need for professional discipline and effective management throughout the games development lifecycle. Learners will have an appreciation for effective game design communication, technology selection, games production and distribution.


    Title: Game Play Programming

    Credits: 5

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    This module will develop the learner’s game development abilities with a primary focus on using an OO framework to program entertaining interactions. The core elements include applied digital game case study-based system analysis design and development using appropriate OO design techniques. On completion of this module learners will appreciate how to design and implement a game using OO techniques that through its actions and feedback as well as through visuals, haptics, reactions, events and sound, the learner can create a more playable and engaging game.


    Title: Mathematics for Game Dev

    Credits: 5

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    This module describes the ideas and athematic language used to formulate, in the neutral language of mathematics, many problems that arise in the area of computer science, in particular the mathematics and dynamics employed in describing the position and motion of bodies in 2D and 3D space when developing computer-based games.  Topics covered are Number Theory, Classical Cryptography and Vectors


    Title: Networking for Games

    Credits: 5

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    This module will enable the learner to manage the computer networking components required for Games application development.  Topics covered are Computer Networks, Network Models, Servers, DNS, Network Protocols, IP and Sockets Programming.


    Title: Object Oriented Theory and Game Programming

    Credits: 5

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    This module develops the students' programming and problem-solving skills, providing the learner with the principles and practices of object-oriented techniques in a gaming context.  Topics covered are Classes and Objects, Abstraction and Encapsulation, Interfaces, Relationships, Polymorphism and Exception Handling.


    Title: Statistics and Probability

    Credits: 5

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    This module aims to further develop students' mathematical ability and to provide the student with the basic statistical and probability concepts required for information technology combined with the programming knowledge required for data analysis. Topics covered are Statistics, Probability, Probability Distributions and Correlation and Regression.


  • Year 3

    Title: 3D Game Engine Development

    Credits: 5

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    This module explores design techniques, planning and programming techniques used to design, develop, test, distribute and maintain games developed using 3D game engines. You will examine and implement features for the creation of game scenes which will include concepts such as image rendering, graphic & model animation, collision detection and collision response.


    Title: Artificial Intelligence for Games

    Credits: 5

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    This module aims to provide an in-depth coverage Artificial Intelligence (AI) and how AI techniques can be applied to modern computer game programming. A collection of AI techniques relevant to computer games, known as Game AI, will be covered. The main objective is to ensure students have a firm and clear understanding of the common AI techniques that are applicable to computer game development. In particular, a main emphasis of this course is to equip students with hands-on practical AI skills to use when students design and develop advanced computer games.


    Title: Game Development Patterns

    Credits: 5

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    This module will examine the use of software patterns utilised within digital games to improve the user experience and game play.The core elements include the examination of different OO patterns within the context of a computer game, learners will utilise these patterns to build better and more engaging games.


    Title: Game Physics

    Credits: 5

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    This module provides an introduction the principles and methods from mathematics, physics, and computer science underlying physics simulation and collision detection in computer games.


    Title: Project And Team Dynamics

    Credits: 10

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    The project involves the student in the specification, design and implementation of a medium‑to‑large‑scale practical project. This allows for the integration of learning from a variety of course technical subjects. Research skills, design methodologies, implementation and problem‑solving are also all core aspects of the project. Students will work small groups. Students will also be introduced to the core concepts and best practices around creating high performance teams and their role within that team, and include content covering group dynamics, team building, creativity, decision making and problem solving as they are applied to this project context.


    Title: Work Placement

    Credits: 30

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    This placement module will provide students with an opportunity to apply the theoretical and practical knowledge gained on their programme while working in a professional IT environment. It will also afford them the opportunity to gain valuable career experience and developed their understanding of working in such an environment.


  • Year 4

    Title: Cross Platform Game Development

    Credits: 5

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    This module will allow learners to scrutinise platform architectures and appropriate programming concepts. Learners will be exposed to games design and scene development on mobile, handheld console, PC and games console platforms.


    Title: Networked Games

    Credits: 5

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    This module will explore and analyse network programming algorithms and architectures in the context of games programming.


    Title: Advanced Data Systems

    Credits: 5

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    This module enables the students to build reliable, scalable, distributed systems to manage and access large datasets.


    Title: Computing and Modern Culture

    Credits: 5

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    An exploration of the innovative theoretical and empirical research about cyberculture and computer games with an emphasis on interactive media and smartphones. The module explores concepts in "mobile,social,local" and it's scope includes the socio-cultural, political and economic dimensions of our online behaviors from a variety of perspectives


    Title: Cyber Security

    Credits: 5

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    This module is designed to examine the principles underlying web and network security. It will focus on the areas of system security and threat analysis. Students will develop an understanding of security threats against networks and web based platforms and the security measures designed to protect them.


    Title: Game Analytics

    Credits: 5

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    The aim of this module is to build the learners’ understanding of the opportunities to use the extensive data sets that can be collected within a game and the wider gaming community. Learners will acquire the skills necessary to identify appropriate metrics, collect, clean, visualise, and interpret the data. In particular, emphasis is on using telemetry and other game datasets to form a rich insight into gamer behaviour, engagement, completion rates, satisfaction, preferences, monetisation, and play strategy. Learners will also consider benchmark reports, and the combination of demographic/stakeholder/community data to form a 360 analysis of the game product.


    Title: Game Development Project

    Credits: 10

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    The project involves the student in the specification, design and implementation of a medium-to-large-scale project. This allows for the integration of learning from a variety of course subjects. Research skills, design methodologies, implementation and problem-solving are also all core aspects of the project.


    Title: Machine Learning

    Credits: 5

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    This module provides the learner with an understanding of the end-to-end process of building machine learning models from understanding, deconstructing and framing the business proposition; collecting categorising and classifying data; building a model; to evaluating and understanding the model performance.


    Title: Mobile Applications & Connected Devices

    Credits: 5

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    This module will provide students with the knowledge required to develop mobile applications and applications capable of interfacing with connected devices. Students will explore a mobile framework and develop suitable mobile applications.


    Title: Software Project Management

    Credits: 5

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    This module illustrates the need for professional discipline and effective management throughout the software development process. It provides the student with the skills required to manage a software development project. Its primary focus is on Agile Project Management.t.


    Title: Software Security

    Credits: 5

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    This module introduces students to the different approaches and guidelines associated with the development of secure software and provides them with skills to analyse code and design secure programs.


Are there opportunities for further study?

Graduates may pursue further Level 9 or 10 programmes in a related field of study.

What are the career prospects?

Graduates of this course may work in positions such as:    

  • Game/Software Programmer 
  • Game/Software Tester
  • Game/Software Designer

More Information

Who is the programme suited to?

Suited to people who are creative, analytical and logical and who are interested in computers and are passionate about game development. Creative and innovative minded people will be challenged in this programme to express their ideas and develop ground-breaking new game technologies.

Top 3 reasons to study this course
  1. Ireland has a growing indie game developer community and indigenous game studios provide excellent employment opportunities.

  2. State of the art technology is used across our Computing programmes to enhance the student’s learning experience.

  3. Work placement is an integral part of all of our Computing programmes. Students will undertake six months industry work placement in Year 3 as part of their studies.