Student in Falmouth University's games academy working on digital illustrations

Game Programming MSc

Get the edge in the highly competitive games industry.

Key details
Penryn Campus
Course duration
1 year

Course overview

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

Working with artists and designers in a studio environment that mirrors the industry, you’ll experiment with cutting-edge technologies and game programming techniques. You’ll learn technical, creative and professional skills from experienced game developers and world-leading researchers. And you’ll benefit from our industry connections and insights – several of our graduates have founded successful indie game studios.  

You will:

  • Develop an imaginative approach to problem-solving, complementing your technical expertise and other highly sought-after transferable skills  
  • Learn from game developers with expertise spanning experimental gameplay, human-computer interaction, graphics and simulation, distributed systems, analytics, artificial intelligence, 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 

The Games Academy is an educational affiliate of the BCS

BCS education affiliate logo

Course details

Games Academy showreel 2020

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. 

Development Practice

You’ll deepen your knowledge of game development practices. Working in interdisciplinary teams and employing specialist skills such as C++ programming and git versioning practices, you’ll devise small-scale artefacts. You’ll also carry out a personal reflective case study that will help to enrich and expand your practice.

(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 & be assessed

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 

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. 


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
  • Access to AR/VR technologies


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. 

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

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


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


John Speakman is a Lecturer with the Games Academy. He joined Falmouth University in May 2016, to st...

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


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
Dr Michael Scott profile image
Dr Michael Scott profile image

Got a question about this course?

If you want to know more about the course structure, our application requirements or what our graduates have gone on to achieve, our friendly course team is here to help.


Chat to Michael


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 
  • AI Programmer
  • Software Developer 
  • Technical Director 
  • Entrepreneur 
  • Researcher / Further study 

This Game Programming master’s will also give you the opportunity to tap into 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.

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 an 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 for September 2024 entry

£10,200 per year – full-time UK (£250 acceptance fee payable. This is deducted from tuition fees)

£19,950 per year – full-time EU/international (£500-£2,500 acceptance fee payable depending upon your status. This is deducted from tuition fees)

Tuition fees for September 2025 will be confirmed in summer 2024.

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 £1,500. Read about the latest laptop specifications we recommend
  • £30-£150 for a headset with a microphone
  • £25-£100 for a webcam
  • Internet access with at least 5Mbps speed to enable livestreaming of content

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.

Speak to an advisor

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.

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