Game Design Theory Level 2 – Organized Development, Documentation and Core Mechanics

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Course Dates: Open-ended
Enrollment Dates: Enroll Anytime
Who can Enroll: Anyone
Course Language: English
Alex Chacon
Alex Chacon
Alex Chacon is a video game developer and workshop instructor for programs that help teach creative computer skills. With over a decade of programming and independent game development experience Alex has put together several unreleased games and mini-games, animated videos and other projects for fun and for personal education purposes. For the past five years ...
Game Design Theory Level 2 - Organized Development, Documentation and Core Mechanics

About this course

The Three C's: Character, Camera, Controls are all big design decisions and affect how you design many other game elements once the choice is made. These are the big design choices that you can't really go back from because they influence core parts of the gameplay experience. Changing your mind about these can be very difficult once you get started.  We'll show you how to go about making these decisions in an organized way with a full range of options.

We'll show you how to properly document your game's design and outline with real world examples and tips from professional game developers. Documentation is essential for keeping track of information, game systems, characters, resources, ideas and concepts. All of this information needs to be organized, categorized and updated regularly for many reasons. An organized Game Design Document (GDD) is key to pitching a game, selling a game, working with teams so they understand your project and basically just a good idea to have so you can organize everything related to your project.

Included is an overview of common software and terms used to in the video game industry so that you can make well informed decisions about what you want to study and what kind of developer you want to be.

 Flow of Information


Course Overview:

Section 1 - The First C: Character

This section includes students to character design and how to make an interesting character with depth and playability.

Section 2 - The Second C: Camera 

In this section students see the options available for the camera in their game and how it can affect and limit the design process and gameplay experience.

Section 3 – The Third C: Controls

This section covers the different ways that players can interact with the game and how those interactions affect the design process and gameplay experience.

Section 4 - Paperwork and Game Documentation  

This section show students the industry standard practices involved with documenting all of your game's information into a Game Design Document.

Section 5 - Common Terms and Tools in the Video Game Industry

This section covers some of the most common terms and software used in professional game development.




At the end of the course students will have the knowledge necessary to understand the major decisions that need to be made in order to move forward in the design process. Students will also know how to properly document these major decisions along with all the information related to their project in an organized Game Design Document. This course prepares students for Level 3 of the Game Design Theory Curriculum which covers proper game documentation, character development, camera positioning and game controls. Upon completion of this course students earn the title of "Video Game Creative Designer" in the Game Development Guild.

We would like to give a special thanks to our friends at GG Dev Pro for allowing us to use some of their material in our lessons.  

Course Structure

  • Section 1 - The First C: Character Design
    • Overview of Course and Character Design Section
    • Introduction to Character Design
    • Defining Your Character and Player Abilities
    • Other and Non-Playable Characters
    • Character-Based Game Metrics
    • Review, Summary and Quiz For Section 1
      • Question 1
      • Question 2
      • Question 3
      • Question 4
      • Question 5
      • Question 6
      • Question 7
      • Question 8
  • Section 2 - The Second C: Camera Design
  • Section 3 – The Third C: Controls
  • Section 4: Paperwork and Game Documentation
  • Section 5: The Developer's Toolbox