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Game Design Training for Video Game Consoles

Becoming a video game designer seems like a dream job for many young people, and an increasing demand in the fast-paced market has made it a viable career option for those with the talent and dedication to acquire the requisite education. Gaming can no longer be considered a frivolous market, as the video and computer game industry generated $9.5 billion in the U.S. in 2007.

Designing for video game consoles is less complex than designing for computer games due to software interaction issues, but with the advent of online gaming services such as Xbox Live for the Microsoft Xbox, designers now must offer support and upgrades for their software, something they could not do in the past. This adds a new dimension, and with it new headaches, to the role of the console video game designer. The design team is now responsible for unforeseen pitfalls in the game design that surface only after release.

Where would you fit on the design team?

Game designing requires an in-depth knowledge of a wide variety of subjects including game theory, game mechanics, visual arts, programming, and multimedia. Games are usually designed by a team of experts, so a student may choose a field of expertise and follow it, with some complementary education thrown in for flavor. Game designers often study liberal arts and behavioral sciences along with computer skills. In order to create realistic characters, one must understand both the characters and their motivations. To facilitate believable interactions, study of subjects like sociology, history, psychology and behavioral science make a designer more attractive to potential employers and often offer a considerable bump in salary.

While every member of the team contributes to gameplay, game designers are primarily responsible for the overall look and feel of the game. The bottom line is simple to state and difficult to achieve; a game designer must figure out how to make the game appealing on every level. It must have visual appeal to an increasingly demanding audience. It must be realistic and at the same time have a deep level of fantasy, enough to draw the player into another world and hold them there. Challenges must be difficult, even maddening, but not impossible. If they are too easy, the game is boring. Word will spread and your game will flop. If they are too difficult you lose all but the hardcore gamers, a market too small to be economically sustainable.

The ability to take an idea and use it to create a multi-dimensional world can rocket a designer into a relative super star arena inhabited by names familiar to gamers the world over. A game that fires the imagination of a generation is the Holy Grail of the gaming industry. Every game designer dreams of designing the next groundbreaking addiction…tomorrow's Pong.

Here are some of the recommended types of courses to get started on a career as a video game designer:


Schools Offering Training Programs in Game Design

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            Game Software Development - Bachelor
            • Average class size is 25, allowing for more one-on-one time with instructors.
            • Has a 97% employment rate among available graduates.
            • All  graduates receive Lifetime Employment  Assistance—free and forever.
            • Michigan's largest independent college.
            • Most instructors are working professionals in the fields they teach.
            • Programs are continuously updated to ensure classes are career-relevant and in sync with what's needed in the industry
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Game Art & Design (BFA)
            • Alumni have appeared in reality competition shows such as Top Chef and Project Runway.
            • Has a team of about 4,000 faculty members focused on helping students tap opportunities in a marketplace driven by ideas.
            • Offers programs in design, media arts, fashion, and culinary.
            • Provides program coordinators who work with students to ensure they have the learning materials, assignments, facilities, and faculty to get the most out of the program.
            • Over 50 campus locations nationwide.
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            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Game Design, Bachelor of Science (Online)
            • Push Your Creativity To The Next Level.
            • Full Sail’s curriculum combines elements of creativity, art, business and life skills, technical prowess, and academic achievement.
            • Full Sail offers accelerated programs, so a degree that would normally take four years takes 24 months on average.
            • Students work with industry-standard tools and technologies, allowing them to gain practical knowledge and real-world experience.
            • Join us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram to interact with our community, read about grad success, and see campus images.
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            • Online Courses
            Game Development
            ABCO Technology , Los Angeles
            • An accredited computer training academy preparing students to enter the IT industry as Network Engineers, Software Engineers, Web Apps Developer, Website Designers, Programmers, Database Administrators since 2000.
            • Holds A+ certification from CompTIA.
            • Located in Los Angeles, approximately 10 minutes away from LAX.
            • Flexible class schedules offered during day times, evenings and weekends.
            • Helping students start a career in technology within 3 - 9 months.
            • Educates with the mission to serve the needs of the local community and graduates by matching opportunities to skills.
            • Military friendly school.
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            • Financial Aid
            Digital Arts and Computer Animation Associate Program
            Laurus College , Atascadero
            • Approved A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 2009.
            • Offers career assistance and resource services to both students and graduates.
            • Several scholarship opportunities are available to students who qualify.
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACCSC).
            • 4 campus locations in Atascadero, San Luis Obispo, Santa Maria, and Oxnard, California, with online options as well.
            Show more [+]
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid

            Latest Game Design Articles & News

            Detroit holds first annual design festival
            Detroit will be hosting its first-ever design festival in order to promote designers in all fields in the area, according to The Detroit News.

            National Design Award ceremony takes place next Tuesday
            The finalists and winners of this year's National Design Awards will be having their annual ceremony a little late this year.

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