Game Programming MSc

Hands typing on a keyboard with playstation controllers on the table
Indie Game Controllers

Get the edge in the highly competitive games industry.

Key details
Course duration 1 year
Attendance Full-time
Subject to validation during this academic year Yes

Request information

Visit us

Get a prospectus

Applications for this course will open shortly.

Course overview

Whether you’re currently studying a computing degree, are in the early stages of your career or want to re-train in this exciting field, this course will help you to become a confident game programmer who can deliver compelling play experiences. 

Learn technical, creative and professional skills from veteran game developers and world-leading researchers, within a studio environment that mirrors industry. Our award-winning Games Academy studio is ripe for collaboration and innovation. Learning from experienced games practitioners, and working with artists and designers in a studio environment, you’ll experiment with cutting-edge technologies and game programming techniques. You’ll also benefit from our industry connections and insights; several of our graduates have seen great success with the UK Games Fund and founding their own indie game studios, through career support from our employability service RealWORKS 

You will:

  • Gain a Master of Science degree with a creative edge, helping you to stand out in a highly competitive sector by nurturing an imaginative approach to problem-solving – complementing your technical expertise and other highly sought-after transferable skills 
  • Learn from experienced game developers with expertise spanning experimental gameplay, human-computer interaction, graphics and simulation, distributed systems, analytics, AI, procedural content generation, physical computing and digital creativity  
  • Be encouraged to explore your unique creative voice and experiment freely with new technologies  
  • Undertake cutting-edge research under the supervision of subject-matter specialists  
  • Work within a simulated studio environment, in line with industry expectations 
  • Enhance your communication and collaboration skills through a team project with students and staff from other areas of games development 
  • Acquire the industry knowledge to take a game from initial concept through to a pitch-ready demonstration 
  • Develop your intellectual independence, and potentially establish yourself as a technical innovator or pursue a new career pathway in research and development 

The Games Academy is an educational affiliate of the BCS

BCS education affiliate logo

Course details

You’ll develop your knowledge of the mathematics and technology that underpins digital games; learn industry-standard game programming approaches and methodologies; and discover how to rapidly take a game from initial concept to a pitch-ready demonstration. For your Final Major Project, you’ll also have the option to make a complete and potentially marketable game. 

By working with – and optimising – state-of-the-art, real-time interactive simulation technologies, you’ll gain the knowledge to contribute to the development of new algorithms and extensions. You’ll also have opportunities to contribute to ground-breaking research efforts, equipping you with the transferrable skills for the games industry as well as software engineering in many other domains. 

Games Academy showreel 2020

Software Engineering

Learn to program in C++ and how to engineer real-time interactive simulations in SDL using agile methodologies and git versioning practices. 

(30 credits)

Digital Games Technology

Develop your knowledge of mathematics and the technology underpinning digital games by experimenting with low-level graphics APIs, such as OpenGL, to recreate the classics or demake modern titles. 

(30 credits)

Advanced Game Programming

Make use of industry-standard engines, such as Unreal 5, to implement original and compelling gameplay experiences using advanced game programming techniques. 

(30 credits)

Game Development Project

Work in a simulated studio environment in multidisciplinary teams – formed of artists, designers and programmers – to rapidly take a game idea from initial concept to a working demonstration that you can pitch for further funding. 

(30 credits)

Major Project

Pursue your own practice-based or empirical research and development efforts under the supervision of a subject-matter specialist. Many choose to situate this work in the game development project they commenced in the previous study block, in an effort to commercially publish their game. 

(60 credits)

The modules above are those being studied by our students, or proposed new ones. Programme structures and modules can change as part of our curriculum enhancement and review processes. If a certain module is important to you, please discuss it with the Course Leader.

How you'll learn

With regularly timetabled support sessions from our course team and access to our studio throughout, you’ll be able to produce games to a high standard, learning to collaborate effectively as a member of a game development team as well as to conduct cutting-edge research and development. You'll learn through: 

  • Demonstrations 
  • Studio practice 
  • Project supervision 
  • Lectures 
  • Seminars 
  • Practical workshops 
  • Crit sessions 
  • Tutorials 
  • Guest speakers 
  • Mentoring 

How you'll be assessed

Assessment is 100% coursework, with the learning situated in an environment that mirrors industry, helping to prepare you for what it’s like in a real game studio. 

Assessments are composed of practical activities underpinned by critical analyses of the workflows and practices applied in the module to further support your learning. 

Module leaders, supervisors and technicians will guide and support you through your assessments to enhance your relevant technical and academic skillsets. 

Staff

The Game Programming course is part of Falmouth’s Games Academy, one of the largest dedicated game development studio spaces of any UK university. You'll learn from industry experts with years of experience across game development disciplines. The course leader, Jamie White, specialises in gameplay programming, software engineering and research.  

Some members of staff only teach on specific modules, and your course might not feature every staff member who teaches on the course.

Dr Jamie White

Course Coordinator, UX Design and Indie Game Development

As Course Leader for the Games Academy's online master's courses, my responsibilities involve managi...

Dr Jamie White

Dr Michael Scott

Head of Computing and Associate Professor of Computer Science Education

Dr Michael Scott is the Head of Computing and Associate Professor of Computer Science Educ...

Dr Michael Scott

Joseph Walton-Rivers

Lecturer

Joseph Walton-Rivers is a lecturer in the Games Academy. He joined the university in 2020 to lecture...

Joseph Walton-Rivers

Brian McDonald

Senior Lecturer Digital Games

Brian McDonald is a senior lecturer on the BA(Hons) Game Development and BSc(Hons) Computing fo...

Brian McDonald

John Speakman

Research Student Teaching Associate

John Speakman is a Research Student Teaching Associate with the Games Academy. He joined Falmouth Un...

John Speakman

Matt Watkins

Lecturer in Computing

Matt is an artist, lecturer, developer and designer. He has been responsible for the visual and tech...

Matt Watkins
Headshot of Tim Phillips

Tim Phillips

Lecturer

Tim joined Falmouth University in 2018 as a game designer in the computational creativity research g...

Tim Phillips
Andrew Smith staff profile

Andy Smith

Technical Manager/Technical Tutor

Andy joined Falmouth University in 2013 after completing his undergraduate studies in Communication ...

Andy Smith

Warwick New

Associate Lecturer

I’m an Associate Lecturer of Computing, with an academic focus on web development, supporting addi...

Warwick New

Facilities

Our facilities range from: 

  • Modern i7 machines 
  • Specialised computing hardware for deep learning projects 
  • Standard software used in the games industry, including Adobe and Autodesk suites 
  • Access to free software via Microsoft Imagine 
  • AR/VR - HoloLens, HoloLens 2 and Oculus Quest 2

Take a virtual tour

Explore the facilities

Careers

As a graduate of this Game Programming master’s course, your career could progress into roles such as:  

  • Game / Gameplay Programmer 
  • Tools Programmer 
  • Game Designer 
  • Systems Designer 
  • Software Developer 
  • Technical Director 
  • Entrepreneur 
  • Researcher / Further study 

How to apply

We welcome applicants with varied qualifications, but typically you’ll need an undergraduate degree. Our typical applicants hold an undergraduate degree of 2:2 or above, or equivalent experience. 

We’ll also welcome your application if you have formal or 'certified' learning (such as training courses not run by universities or colleges) and learning from work experience or self-study. This is called Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) and should have been gained within the last five years, and be equivalent to the learning outcomes of our minimum entry qualifications. 

APL applicants using experience to apply should note there is a £200 application fee for entry with advanced standing or with exemption from specific modules or credit. 

Applicants should hold a Level 2 GCSE (or equivalent) in English and Mathematics. 

If English isn’t your first language, you'll need to demonstrate English language skills that are sufficiently developed for successful completion of your studies. We accept a range of recognised English language qualifications that are equivalent to the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic minimum score of 6.5 overall, with a minimum of 6.0 in Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening.

International applicants who require a student visa to study in the UK must take a recognised language test that is approved and vouched for by the University. Our Applicant Services Team can help with any questions you may have about study visas or suitable language tests.

What we're looking for

We welcome students from a diverse range of backgrounds and prior experiences – including those who don’t hold a technical qualification but are willing to take on the challenge. 

You might currently be studying a course related to computing (including software engineering, game development, computer science, entrepreneurship, data analysis and more). Or perhaps you’re at the start of your career and want to enhance your skills and employability. Alternatively, you may be further along in your career but interested in re-training, or transitioning into research. 

Fees, costs & funding

Tuition fees

£9,900 per year – full-time UK (£250 acceptance fee payable. This is deducted from tuition fees.) 

£19,300 per year – full-time EU/international (acceptance fee up to £1,000 payable, dependent on nationality. This is deducted from tuition fees.)

£9,900 per year – full-time UK (£250 acceptance fee payable. This is deducted from tuition fees.) 

£19,300 per year – full-time EU/international (acceptance fee up to £1,000 payable, dependent on nationality. This is deducted from tuition fees.)

Tuition fees are set annually and are subject to review each year. The University may therefore raise tuition fees in the second or subsequent years of a course, in line with inflation and/or the maximum permitted by law or Government policy. Students will be notified of any changes as soon as possible. 

The figures above don't include accommodation and living costs

Typical course costs

  • To complete your coursework, you’ll require a laptop at an expense of around £1,300. 
  • Additional course costs could amount to £200 - £300. Additional material costs may be required on particularly large or complex projects and at the discretion of the course leader.

If you need to bring other equipment or materials with you, these will be outlined in your Welcome Letter. 

 

Ask a student

What better way to find out about life at Falmouth University than by asking our current students?

From course details and academic support, to the social scene and settling in, our students are ready and available to answer any questions you might have. Simply set up your account, send them a question and they'll get back to you within 24 hours.

Request information

Do you have questions about the course or studying at Falmouth? Fill in our simple online form and we'll get in touch to support your application journey.

Submit form
Student funding staff at a table with palm trees

Similar courses

Falmouth University Games Academy students standing in front of a large dinosaur model
Indie Game Development Msc 2022

Indie Game Development MA (Online)

Become a confident and daring indie game developer, producing vibrant and engaging experiences for g...

Indie Game Development MA (Online)
Game Design Ma 2022
Game Design Ma 2022

Game Design MA

Are you passionate about games and keen to make them better? Do you feel curious about what makes a ...

Game Design MA
Game Art Min
Game Art Min

Game Art MA

Are you an artist with a passion for games? Do you want to develop your skills to meet the challenge...

Game Art MA
Three people standing in a dark space framed by lines of light
AI for games 2022 resized

Artificial Intelligence for Games MSc

Are you fascinated by artificial intelligence? Do you want to explore the applications of AI in game...

Artificial Intelligence for Games MSc