The NYU Game Center has been offering classes on game design, game production and game studies since its establishment in 2008. Since Fall 2011 the Game Center offers a Minor in Game Design which is open to all New York University undergraduates.  In Fall 2012 we accepted our fist class of MFA students into our two-year Master’s program.

The Game Center has recruited some of the top game scholars and designers for its faculty, inclusing Eric Zimmerman, Clara-Fernández-Vara, Bennett Foddy and Charles Pratt.

Game Design MFA
The Game Center MFA is a 2-year Masters of Fine Arts degree that explores the design and development of games as a creative practice. The curriculum is centered on the creation of games and includes game design, criticism, programming, and visual design.

The NYU Game Center EVO Scholarship The NYU Game Center has partnered with the EVO Tournament to create a scholarship to study game design at New York University. If you have a passion for fighting games and want to join the next generation of great game designers we welcome you apply for EVO scholarship and create the future of fighting games in the Fall 2014 class at the Game Center. Undergraduates are being considered for the scholarship.

The NYU Game Center IndieCade Scholarship 
We are excited to announce a new scholarship program which we are offering in partnership with IndieCade the international game festival and conference. The NYU Game Center IndieCade Scholarship will offer $25,000 towards our Game Design MFA program to an individual whose game has been selected for inclusion in the IndieCade festival. Anyone who worked on a game that has been chosen as an Official Nominee or an Official Selection of the IndieCade festival is automatically eligible to apply for the scholarship.

Minor in Game Design 
The NYU Game Center’s minor in Game Design is an 18-credit minor that will provide students with a robust set of tools for the design, production, and study of games. The core of the minor consists of 12 credits from the Game Center’s diverse offering of courses on game design, production, and theory. Reflecting the interdisciplinary nature of game design, the remaining 6 elective credits can be drawn from a wide range of programs throughout the university. The Game Center will maintain a list of pre-approved electives, organized in broad categories that will allow students to easily receive the minor based on their specialization. Additionally, students are welcome to submit unlisted courses related to Game Design to a Game Center advisor, who will approve these classes on a case-by-case basis.

With a strong base of dynamic Game Center courses, a simple and open process for accepting courses from other parts of the University, and guidance from the Game Center’s faculty, the Game Design Minor will prepare students for the multi-disciplinary and rapidly evolving field of Game Design.

For the full Game Design Minor Document click here.


NYU Game Center Student Community

Internships and Job Opportunities
Over the past few years we have been hard at work building a network with local game development companies throughout New York. If you’re an NYU student and would like to get first word on their internship and job postings, sign up for College Center, where you will have access to a record of all postings.  Instructions for how to sign up for College Central are here.

Game Center Student Mailing List
Are you an NYU student interested in joining the Game Center student mailing list?  On the list you can find collaborators for game projects, internship, job, and event notifications, and a community of students interested in games and game development. Request for membership by emailing our Program Coordinator at from your address.

Game Center Courses

Game Design

Introduction to Game Design - OART-UT 1605 Offered: Fall and Spring  This class is an intensive, hands-on workshop addressing the complex challenges of game design. The premise of the class is that all games, digital and non-digital, share common fundamental principles, and that understanding these principles is an essential part of designing successful games. Learning how to create successful non-digital games provides a solid foundation for the development of digital games.

In this workshop, students will; analyze existing digital and non-digital games, taking them apart to understand how they work as interactive systems; create a number of non-digital games in order to master the basic design principles that apply to all games regardless of format; critique each other’s work, developing communication skills necessary for thriving in a collaborative field; explore the creative possibilities of this emerging field from formal, social, and cultural perspectives; develop techniques for fast-prototyping and iterative design that can be successfully applied to all types of interactive projects.

Advanced Game Design - OART-UT 1609 Offered: Fall or Spring Prerequisites: Introduction to Game Design The focus of this class is the actual creation of several non-digital games. Students deeply explore advanced topics in game design, wrestling with complex and challenging problems, such as formal play-testing procedures, balancing game economies, and designing games for learning. The class will cover both the craft and the culture of making games, and has a particular emphasis on how designers communicate their ideas. Although most of the projects will take the form of non-digital design, the course will address the application of ideas and procedures to digital games.

Game Production

Game Development: Modding - OART-UT 1610  Offered: Fall Only In this course, students get practice building game play experiences through a series of short-cycle exercises. Students work in small teams to create and tune gaming experiences in a range of game genres, using the game engine that they will use in Game Studio (a semester-long project class). The course introduces students to production roles, playtesting, considerations of audience and platform, and other practical concerns in building games.

Game Development Workshop – OART-UT 1612 Offered: Spring Only This course reflects the various skills and disciplines that are brought together in modern game development: game design, programming, visual art, animation, sound design, and writing. The workshop will situate these disciplines within a larger context of game literacy and a historical and critical understanding of games as cultural objects. Classroom lectures and lab time will all be used to bring these different educational vectors together into a coherent whole; the workshop will be organized around a single, long-term, hands-on, game creation project. Working in small groups under the close supervision of instructors, students will collaborate on the creation of a playable game. As a creative constraint to help inspire them and guide their designs, the students will be given a theme to express in their game projects.

Game Scholarship

Games 101 – OART-UT 1600 Offered: Fall and Spring Games 101 is the foundational course for the NYU Game Center.  The focus of Games 101 is game literacy – a shared understanding of games as complex cultural and aesthetic objects. The class will incorporate lectures, discussion, readings, and writing assignments, but the primary activity of the class is critical play – playing games in order to better understand and appreciate them. The class will cover games on and off the computer, including classic and contemporary board and card games, sports, and games on the PC, internet, and consoles.

Thinking About Games – OART-UT 1606 Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer This class is an overview of the field of games that approaches them from several theoretical and critical perspectives. No special theoretical background or prior training is needed to take the course, but to have had a broad practical experience with and basic knowledge of games is a distinct advantage. Also, an interest in theoretical and analytical issues will help. You are expected to actively participate in the lectures, which are dialogic in form, with ample room for discussion.

The course will prepare the student to: Understand and discuss games from a theoretical perspective, as well as the components of a game; Apply new theories and evaluate them critically; Assess and discuss game concepts and the use of games in various contexts; Analyze games, and understand and apply a range of analytical methods.

Advanced Topics in Game Studies – OART-UT 1611 Offered: Fall or Spring Prerequisites: Thinking About Games Advanced Topics in Game Studies is a category of class that allows students to focus in-depth on a specific topic in game studies. The focus of the course will vary from semester to semester, but will be based on current issues in video game theory, video game design and video game culture. Some example courses include: Social Games, Games and Storytelling, Convention and Experiment in Video Games, and Casual Games. Students will actively participate in the development of video game theory.