CS121 : Introduction to Game Design

Spring 2024
Instructor: Jordan Tynes

jtynes@wellesley.edu

Welcome to CS 121!

Each type of engagement is described directly below. Details about each day will be updated frequently.

  • Generic placeholder image
    Lectures:
    Unless otherwise announced, this portion of the course will take place in person at our assignment classroom. Please show up a few minutes prior to the start of class (see note about grading/evaluation) and be ready to engage in lecture materials and/or accompanying discussion. Readings may be assigned in preparation for or in conjunction with these lectures.
  • Generic placeholder image
    Technical Demonstrations:

    You will learn to use various aspects of the Unity Game Engine throughout the term. Technical instruction will be provided during class and, unless otherwise noted, this portion of the course will be recorded and shared for your reference. Attendance is still required so you may fully leverage lab resources.

  • Generic placeholder image
    Optional Activities:

    I plan to organize several activities throughout the semester that will be optional, but strongly encouraged. These could include game nights, Twitch streams, panels, etc. These will be announced both in-class and via email. Stay tuned!

    Twitch Streams:

    Wednesdays @ 8pm!

Schedule:

Subject to Changes!

Week 1:

Mon. Jan. 22
Welcome to CS121 and Game Design
Assigned Reading:

Chapters 3

Thur. Jan. 25
Intro to Unity
Tech Link:

Intro To Unity


Week 2:

Mon. Jan. 29
The Magic Circle
Assigned Reading:

Chapters 9

Thur. Feb. 1
Cameras and Colliders
Tech Link:

Platformer


Week 3:

Mon. Feb. 5
Emergence
Assigned Reading:

Chapters 12

Thur. Feb. 8
Audio, UI, & Effects
Tech Link:

Mouse and Cheese Demo


Week 4:

Mon. Feb. 12
Demos & Intro Unit 2
Assigned Reading:

Chapters 12

Thur. Feb. 15
Set Up Two-Minute Game
Tech Link:

Space Lander Setup

Assigned Reading:

Chapter 13


Week 5:

Tue. Feb. 20
Types of Play
Assigned Reading:

Chapter 23

Thur. Feb. 22
Intro to Scripting
Tech Link:

Intro to Scripting


Week 6:

Mon. Feb. 26
Scripting & Timers
Tech Link:

TBD

Thur. Feb. 29
Continued Automation
Assigned Reading:

Chapter 15

Tech Link:

TBD


Week 7:

Mon. Mar. 4
Custom Animations, Set Parent, Layers, and Key Press
Tech Link:

TBD

Thur. Mar. 7
Meaning from Play
Assigned Reading:

Chapter 25


Week 8:

Mon. Mar. 11
WebGL Build & Lab
Tech Link:

TBD

Thur. Mar. 14
Demos
Assigned Reading:

Chapter 25


Week 9:

Mon. Mar. 25
Games as Cultural Rhetoric
Assigned Reading:

Chapter 26

Thu. Mar. 28
Narrative and Ideation
Assigned Reading:

Chapter 30


Week 10:

Mon. Apr. 1
Scripting Movement
Tech Link:

TBD

Thur. Apr. 4
Animated Sprites
Tech Link:

TBD


Week 11:

Mon. Apr. 8
Games as Art
Asssigned Reading:

TBD

Thur. Apr. 11
NO CLASS
Enjoy Ruhlman!

TBD


Week 12:

Mon. Apr. 15
No Class: Patriot's Day
Thur. Apr. 18
Dialog System
Tech Link:

TBD


Week 13:

Mon. Apr. 22
Prototype Playtesting & Feedback
Tech Link:

TBD

Thur. Apr. 25
Final Lab
Tech Link:

TBD


Week 14:

Mon. Apr. 29
Final Demonstrations
Fri. May. 3
Playable Media Open House!