Why I chose to study Game Development

29 February 2024

A computer is surrounded by coffee and sweets
Game Jam Getty 2
Hugh Hastings/Getty Images

This article was written by Game Development BA(Hons) student Mars.

Deciding which university offer to firmly accept was so much easier than I had expected, that I had thought I’d done something wrong.

Admittedly, I didn’t have any qualms about travelling long distances (which does put off some students), but I was certain that when I chose Falmouth, it was the right fit for me. I'd spent weeks and weeks pouring over the websites for my prospective universities; I'd looked at every single potential module, what assessments would be like, the staff and their portfolios (which was incredible to find out that I would be learning from the people, who had worked on my favourite games). I’d looked at the environments I'd be learning and working in and, wanting to work in a triple A games studio, I knew that the Games Academy at Falmouth would prepare me to work in a professional environment in ways that other universities with similar courses wouldn’t be able to.

Falmouth University has one of the largest collections of industry-used hardware for students to loan from - I’ve been able to use the same cameras that Marvel use for their films for a non-university project, despite not being a film student. I’ve loved being able to use professional audio recording equipment and work with students on other courses to deliver an incredible audio experience in the games I’ve worked on. 

A key thing that shaped my decision was the ability to work in a realistic production pipeline and, not just see, but really be involved with every single step of games production. Producing games from the drawing board to the keyboard has really allowed me to explore roles I didn’t think I'd be interested in and it's been so incredibly useful for narrowing down what I want to do after graduation.

One thing that stood out to me about studying game development at Falmouth, was that the course is primarily teamwork based, which was a skill I knew I needed to develop. I did have concerns about it being such a large portion of the course, but I used the Ask our Community tool on the website to discuss my fears with a student on the course, who was fantastic about explaining how the team selection process works and what conflict resolution looked like.

I was also able to have a look at other students' work on Itch.io, as every year the Games Academy hosts a Games Expo of students' work, where friends, family and industry guests are able to come and visit. I'd seen that students were showcasing games made with a freedom to explore any and all concepts and themes that had been produced at an exceptional quality, even during their first years, which had completely blown me away. I had the ability to produce games like that in my first year? Admittedly, the prospect of having my work viewed by real life industry professionals was nerve wracking, but it's a great way of making industry connections, which wasn’t a possibility at other universities I had looked at. Where else would I be able to show the games that I had made and discuss my role in the production pipeline?

Of course, Falmouth’s location was something I took into consideration; I had a look around the campus using the virtual tour, but I absolutely loved the fact that both the Falmouth and Penryn Campuses are open campuses (seeing people walking their dogs when I’m on my way into the Games Academy is fantastic) and that I can take one bus straight into town and go out for a nice dinner with my team, or go and relax on the beach after a long day on campus. I like being able to work in the Penryn Campus library at any time, since it’s open twenty four hours a day, so I can find the books I need at whatever time I’m working and the fact that it has a gigantic multi-media collection. Yes, I do use it like my own massive personal movie library and I’ve seen some incredible movies. And honestly, the number of cafes on campus was a bonus! I love getting a coffee in between my lectures and seminars and the fact I can get something in almost every building wasn’t something I knew I needed.

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