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Games Design and Creative Writing BA

Overview

Good writing and communication skills are important for anyone seeking a career in the games industry. Brunel’s Games Design and Creative Writing BA is designed for people like you who take an active interest in games and want to express your creative thinking.

Games Design is at the core of what we teach on this course and it’s a multi-disciplinary skill that covers the creation of rules, art, software use, communication, theory, and more. This gives you a thorough knowledge of games design and gameplay.

Your second subject will also help you to develop your own creativity and explore different genres of writing. You will work under the guidance of experienced staff and practising writers of international standing. They will give you a grounding in all aspects of Creative Writing, the principles of narrative and the importance of reading and writing in the contemporary world. You will learn how best to use these skills to develop your range of expression, critical evaluation and presentation, all of which will expand your learning and imaginative thinking.

Brunel’s Games Design and Creative Writing BA gives you the opportunity to understand the deep and varied aspects of interactive digital story telling. Teaching you how to think critically about narrative decisions and how they interact with design choices. You will discover what makes a game appealing to different audiences and learn how to make sure that the story elements work with design choices. These are essential and enduring skills that will shape your future career.

3D modelling, programming or a computer science background is not necessary, just a passion for games and desire to study or become involved in creating them. Studying this combined honours degree will give you all you need to get an edge in the competitive games and creative sector.

Enquiries

Contact our Enquiries team.
Course Enquiries: +44 (0)1895 265599 (before you submit an application)
Admissions Office: +44 (0)1895 265265 (after you submit an application)


Course content

The combination of Games Design and Creative Writing produces ever more exciting games. Studying this course and gaining the skills and knowledge within it will give you the chance to see your narrative come alive in games of your making.

The following types of modules are offered throughout the course:

  • Design modules which will help you to create strategies for generating game design ideas and projects – leading to a practical understanding of creative design
  • Theory modules to help you to understand the cultural and social significance of games and their historical contexts – which will lead you to develop formal design perspectives
  • Application modules which cover the communication tools used in the games industry such as presenting and prototyping skills

The Games Design and Creative Writing BA consists of compulsory and optional modules, a typical selection can be found below. Modules can vary from year to year to keep up-to-date with the games industry, but these offer a good idea of what we teach.

Optional modules are indicative and available subject to numbers.

Year 1

Compulsory:

  • Games Design 1: Introduction to Games Design
  • Games Studies 1: Introduction to Games Studies
  • Digital Prototyping 1: Wire-framing
  • Business Contexts
  • Introduction to Writing Fiction
  • Introduction to Writing Drama
  • Introduction to Writing Poetry

Year 2

Compulsory:

  • Games Design 2: Mechanics and Economies
  • Games Studies 2: Concepts and Analysis

Optional:

One of the following:

  • Games Development
  • Game User Research and Experience
  • Game Genres
  • Setting and World Design

Three of the following:

  • Writing Contemporary Poetry
  • Writing Journalism
  • Writing the Short Story
  • Screenwriting
  • Horror, Sci-Fi and Fantasy
  • Writing the Self

Year 3

Compulsory:
  • Games Studies 3: Socio-Cultural Contexts

Optional:

Take one of the following core projects:

  • Major Project: Commercial Games
  • Major Project: Experimental Games
  • Major Project: Game Assets
  • Major Project: Game Based Learning
  • Major Project: Team Project
  • Major Project: Traditional Games
  • Theory Project: Design
  • Theory Project: Business and Development
  • Theory Project: Game Analysis
  • Theory Project: People, Communities, and Cultures

Or

  • Creative Writing Special Project 


If Creative Writing Special Project was chosen then one of the following must be taken:

  • Major Project: Commercial Games
  • Major Project: Experimental Games
  • Major Project: Game Assets
  • Major Project: Game Based Learning
  • Major Project: Team Project
  • Major Project: Traditional Games
  • Theory Project: Design
  • Theory Project: Business and Development
  • Theory Project: Game Analysis
  • Theory Project: People, Communities, and Cultures


If any of the Games Design Projects were chosen as core then one of the following modules must be taken:

  • Creative Writing Special Project
  • Psychogeography
  • The Creative Industries
  • Writing Modern Drama
  • Writing Modern Fiction
  • Writing Comedy

Read more about the structure of undergraduate degrees at Brunel and what you will learn on the course.

Entry criteria 2018/19

  • GCE A-level BBB, including grade B in English Literature, English Language, English Language and Literature, Creative Writing or Literature in English.
  • BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma DDD in a related subject, plus grade B in A-level English (Applicants without A-level English or Creative Writing will be required to submit a written sample of work on request).
  • BTEC Level 3 Diploma DD in a related subject, with an A-Level in English or Creative Writing at grade B.
  • BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma D in any subject, with A-Levels grade BB including English or Creative Writing.
  • International Baccalaureate Diploma 30 points, including 5 in Higher Level English.
  • Access to Higher Education Diploma Complete and pass a related subject Access course with 45 credits at Level 3 with Merits in all units. Access students will be required to provide a sample of writing on request.

A minimum of five GCSEs are required, including GCSE English grade C or grade 4. GCSE Mathematics grade c or grade 4 is also normally required.

Please check our Admissions pages for more information on other factors we use to assess applicants as well as our full GCSE requirements and accepted equivalencies in place of GCSEs.

Entry criteria are subject to review and change each academic year.


International and EU entry requirements

If your country or institution is not listed or if you are not sure whether your institution is eligible, please contact Admissions

This information is for guidance only by Brunel University London and by meeting the academic requirements does not guarantee entry for our courses as applications are assessed on case-by-case basis.

English language requirements

  • IELTS: 6.5 (min 5.5 in all areas)
  • Pearson: 58 (51 in all subscores)
  • BrunELT: 65% (min 55% in all areas)

You can find out more about the qualifications we accept on our English Language Requirements page.

If you require a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK, you must prove knowledge of the English language so that we can issue you a Certificate of Acceptance for Study (CAS). To do this, you will need an IELTS for UKVI or Trinity SELT test pass gained from a test centre approved by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) and on the Secure English Language Testing (SELT) list. This must have been taken and passed within two years from the date the CAS is made.

Should you wish to take a pre-sessional English course to improve your English prior to starting your degree course, you must sit the test at an approved SELT provider for the same reason.

We offer our own BrunELT English Test and have pre-sessional English language courses for students who do not meet requirements or who wish to improve their English. You can find out more information on English courses and test options at the Brunel Language Centre.

Teaching and learning

This course will help you to develop your creative writing skills and focus on how they relate to games design and game play. You’ll learn about the application of traditional story and narrative design and how it applies to games design and gameplay.

Your learning will come through lectures, workshops, seminars, play sessions and tutorials. You’ll also use the online forum to discuss, share and develop your knowledge. You’ll gain confidence in sharing your ideas, giving and receiving feedback and working individually as well as in a multi-disciplinary team.

The teaching team are experts in nurturing games talent and you will benefit from their insight into the industry.  You will be introduced to ideas at the forefront of the discipline as well as sharing their knowledge and understanding of professional practice. This will help to keep you up-to-date with industry developments and show you how the skills you learn on this course are applicable to the world of work.

Of course the best teachers of writing are writers and Creative Writing at Brunel is taught by successful, published writers, many of whom have international reputations. You will draw on their experience across a range of genres and you will have the opportunity to study Creative Writing to a high level.  You will develop your knowledge, understanding, and analytical and creative skills through the analysis, interpretation and creation of literary texts.

All games students will have 24-hour access to the games lab, where high spec PCs are available for you to work on and play games. You will also use the Design room, where an impressive collection of board games is available for you to learn and understand the principles of games design. This room also serves as a wonderful, collaborative space where you can play and generate ideas, work, relax and have fun.

You’ll finish this course with a skillset that will allow you to develop a game from scratch and be ready to work and thrive in the games industry.

Should you need any non-academic support during your time at Brunel, the Student Support and Welfare Team are here to help.

Assessment and feedback

Assessment is through practical and theoretical, group and individual, project coursework.

This way of working and assessment will give you a firm foundation and preparation for your entry into the creative industries.

Read our guide on how to avoid plagiarism in your assessments at Brunel.

Fees and funding

Fees for 2018/19 entry

UK/EU students: £9,250 full-time

International students: £16,200 full-time

Some courses incur additional course related costs. You can also check our on-campus accommodation costs for more information on living expenses.

UK/EU students can opt to pay in six equal monthly instalments: the first instalment is payable on enrolment and the remaining five by Direct Debit or credit/debit card.

Overseas students can opt to pay in two instalments: 60% on enrolment, and 40% in January for students who commence their course in September (or the remaining 40% in March for selected courses that start in January).

Fees quoted are per year and may be subject to an annual increase. Home/EU undergraduate student fees are regulated and are currently capped at £9,250 per year; any changes will be subject to changes in government policy. International fees will increase annually in line with RPI, or 5%, whichever is the lesser.

There is a range of financial support available to help you fund your studies. Find out about undergraduate student funding options.