Game Design

5 ECTS | 75€ | On-site in Turku | 1-30 August 2023 with contact teaching 7-18 August 2023

Game design combines both artistic and scientific thinking resulting in exciting and immersive experiences.

A game designer not only comes up with the idea for a game but also maintains and refines the vision throughout the development process. All this requires knowledge from myriad types of topics ranging from low-level core mechanics to building new worlds and characters – and interacting with the other members of the development team to make it all real.

The creative journey begins here. Will you join us?

The students will learn the theory behind game design and how to carry it out in practice as an individual game designer and as a part of a design group. The topics are approached from historical, developmental and creative perspectives. The course proceeds through cycles of theory, game analysis and practical design exercises.

 Learning outcomes

By the end of the course the student

  • understands the role and requirements of a game designer in the overall game development process
  • is capable of taking a specialized role in designing user interfaces, core mechanics or levels
  • can set up and manipulate the internal economy of a game and knows how to use it in game balancing or tweaking the difficulty and gameplay progression
  • knows how to work with an in-house or outside customer to create a design
  • can develop iteratively a game design from an idea through a concept into a game design document

Lectures, individual tasks, group tasks, presentations

University of Turku

University lecturer Jouni Smed

Undergraduate students with at least two years completed of Bachelor’s studies in any field.

Pre-task 30 h, lectures 25 h, project work in groups 50 h, post-task 30 h = 135 h


  • Ernest Adams, Fundamentals of Game Design, 3rd Edition, New Riders, 2014. 978-0-321-92967-9
  • Jesse Schell, The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, 3rd Edition, CRC Press, 2019. 978-1-1386-3209-7
  • Lecture material, webpages etc.


Max. 25 students