Course overview



This short course a journey into the practice of game design. An exploration of games and playful content which leads you to learn how games are made and how to deliver powerful meaning through games and playful experiences. Let's make games together.

I enjoyed this course so much and it really inspired me to come up with new ideas and start creating. Fede was very knowledgable and passionate about his subject, using lots of real-life examples and knowledge to bring the philosophical aspects of the course to life. There was also a lovely community feel to the group and it was great to be able to play each others game prototypes as well as get helpful feedback on your own work.

Rosie, Spring 2021

Through this course, you will develop the skills for designing and making your own games. The focus is on developing a design thinking practice that can be applied to any kind of game or playful content, be it board games, digital games, art installations, or any kind of interactive media.

During the course we will explore the practice of game design and the theory connected to it. The course is meant for you to start developing your personal style of design and to teach you how to critically analyse games and how small details can greatly influence the way a game is played and perceived.

We will explore the meaning of games and study how games create meaning through their mechanics. We will look at games as small worlds with their own language and explore how that language is created and maintained by the game designer.

The course will also go past the normal preconceptions about games (especially digital games) and provide a retrospective of creators who are working on more personal, deep games. We will analyse games that deal with the human condition and try to understand how to deconstruct our feelings to build our own.

No coding experience is required: the game we will create are platform independent. You will be able to work with all sorts of games and the course will provide you with some free tools that are accessible for people that are just starting.

At the end of the course, you will have produced some small games but more importantly, you will have established your personal vision of game design which then you will be able to apply to any kind of interactive content.



Booking information

Disability Support

We are committed to providing reasonable teaching adjustments for students with disabilities that may impact on their learning experience. If you require adjustments, please complete the relevant section on the booking form and also contact us at so we can respond to your requests as soon as possible. 

Please note our short courses sell-out quickly, so early booking is advisable.


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Tutor information

Federico Fasce

Federico Fasce has a background in game design and media studies. He has been working in the games industry and other related fields for more than 20 years. His interests lie in the meaning of games and play as languages, and in how and why people play games and get meaning from them, particularly from an anthropological point of view.


Course structure

Week 1: Play vs. Game, Caillois and foundational game studies
In this lesson, we will explore what is a game, how it's structured and we start making a small non-digital game to warm up.

Week 2: MDA Model Mechanics and dynamics: feedback loops
Here we go in deep into how a game works.

Week 3: Paper prototyping and first concepts
Here we learn how to create our first game concept.

Week 4: Systems, emergence, visceral/behavioural/reflective design

Week 5: Design Tools, Game loop, Challenge and decision making

Week 6: Narrative aspects of games

Week 7: Space design and the importance of the game space
Some consideration on how to better understand and create a game space that is exciting and nice to explore.

Week 8: The Game design document
How to write a good design document and how to use it for our game.

Week 9: Playtesting
How to conduct a playtesting session and the importance of testing a game.

Week 10: Wrap up and showcase of interesting games

Learning outcomes

During the course you will:

• Make a game using a simple game making tool
• Understanding how a game designer thinks and works
• Use games as a way to deliver deep messages
• Structure a game environment in an entertaining and effective way

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