Serious game design course

How can we use games to address real-world problems? How do we design enough usefulness and fun into them?  What can we learn ourselves while we’re designing games? These are some of the questions we look at during this one-week serious game design course.

Students testing their creation on innocent bystanders in the IHE cafe. This is a flood protection game using a board from a water allocation game by Bruce Lankford.

Games can be used to teach, to engage people, to enable discussion on sensitive topics, and more. During the course, students work in teams to develop serious games addressing different water issues, from community engagement in flood protection to investment planning. Since 2016, I’ve coordinated and taught this course as a week-long summer course at IHE Delft Institute for Water Education in the Netherlands. I can offer it to your organisation, so that your staff and students can get started on using games in their own work.

Course overview

Short lectures and workshops guide students through the process, from conceptualising their chosen system, to choosing an audience and game format, to prototyping, testing, and facilitating the games. Serious game design often involves difficult decisions between what’s realistic and what’s fun, and by testing the games repeatedly on themselves and others, the teams grow and shape their games. What’s finished on Friday is often very different to what was planned on Monday!

On Friday, all the teams get the chance to play each others games, and students reflect on how well the game met their brief. Lots of interesting ideas come out of the course, from board games to computer games.

Practical information

The standard course costs £3000 (excluding travel and venue costs). This includes:

  • – Five-day course, 7 teaching hours per day
  • – Wide variety of game building materials to use

I can also tailor the course to your requirements.

Interested? Get in touch.

Would you like to know more? Let’s start talking. You can contact me by phone, Skype or email using the details above.