Game designers invent, build, produce and promote computer games. Game design is like being the film director, but for a computer simulation (imitates the appearance of reality). They are limited only by their own imagination and the customer’s budget.
Game designers are the creative thinkers in the development of a game, and they become the story-tellers in how the game is to be played. They produce the game design document and develop games for educational, entertainment or computer platforms. There are different styles of computer games:
simulation - where the player takes on a real-world simulation
strategy - where the player takes on opponents using strategic and tactical moves
role-playing - where the player controls characters in fantasy or science-fiction environments
action - where the player needs a quick eye and reactions to make his moves against a character.
The degree of programming is dependent on the type of game. In small projects, game designers do the design and most of the programming, whereas in larger projects, they may do the design only and the programming will be done by other people. They work with a team of programmers, developers and animators.
Computer Science related degree for programmers, Art qualification for game artists.
Most tertiary institutions offer computer courses in programming. Examples of places to study:
Degree: BSc Software Development - RU
BSc Information Technology: Computer Games Design - UCT, BIS Multimedia - UP
Diploma: NDip Information Technology - UJ, NMMU
Degree: The BA (Fine Arts) is offered at most universities. The duration of the course is 4 years of full-time study.
The University of the Witwatersrand offer a BA Digital Arts degree for students interested in game graphics and animation, narrative, and character design. This is a 4-year professional degree.
Diploma: N.Dip: Graphic Design. The duration of the course is 3 years, and it includes specific training in advertising campaigns and design for corporate image - CUT, CPUT, DUT, TUT, NMMU, VUT.
Various private colleges, also offer Graphic Design Diplomas.