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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Principles of Game Design by Michigan State University

4.4
1,113 ratings
290 reviews

About the Course

You have a great idea for a game. Turning that idea into a reality isn't just about knowing the tools. In this course you will practice moving from game concept through design documentation, prototyping and testing. Numerous elements go into the overall process of game design. These range from topics such as idea generation, story, character, and game world development, game mechanics and level design, and user experience design. You will explore the process for designing meaningful experiences for your players. At the end of the course learners will have produced a game's high concept document, one page blueprint, a physical prototype, pitch and supporting design documentation to move from an idea in your head to a fleshed out design, ready for implementation....

Top reviews

JR

Mar 27, 2016

Great course!\n\nThought I wouldn't use the stuff that I learned in the videos at first, but as I started working on my own projects, I realised it was very important knowledge for a game developer.

MC

Apr 03, 2017

This course helps your game go from concept to reality. It pushed me to get a digital prototype made and ready to demo. Great depth of information related to game design and the gaming industry.

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251 - 275 of 276 Reviews for Principles of Game Design

By Tatiana K

Feb 12, 2018

The content for reading is great, but in the videos the lecturer often spends a lot of time on things which seem a bit too general and vague. Although, may be idea development of a game is vague.

By Marvin O S

Jun 07, 2019

The lectures are good and the instructor is clealy competent in Game Design. However, I feel that lectures are sometimes not straight to the point and tests contain questions, which are partially really tricky to answer. Furthermore, I disagree with the evaluation attribute "epic". I do not think that a small course project would ever be epic, nor do I think that this should be required. I believe that "feasible" would per already complex enough to achieve......

By Pedro M G

Jun 06, 2016

It appears the teacher doesn't take the necessary steps to polish content and tests, everything feels unstructured and ad-lib. Course videos don't seem to follow any kind of logic or purpose and tests are based on highly subjective content, but are not prepared to deal with the subjectivity of reviewers (i.e. forcing them to provide feedback instead of giving points arbitrarily).

By Matheus G L

Jun 28, 2016

I will review this course appointing its pros and cons.

Pros:

- The instructor: he is a captivating person. It really seems that he like game development, he make jokes and try to make the course interesting. So, he’s personality is makes the course less boring.

Cons:

- The course name: when I saw “design” in the course name and the icon of course page, I thought it would be related to graphic design, or history telling and so on. But no, the “design” means “project”. So I think a better name would be “Principles of Game Project”. Although, it might be just me who thought this way, because in my language design means something totally different.

- The course content: this course should be at the end of the specialization. It is too much abstract and, in some aspects, very obvious. I will not say it is completely useless, because it is not. It gives us a structured view of the stages of game design and its documentation, but I think it would be better if it was like a case study.

- The assignments: probably the worst part of the course. They very very complex, to be sincere, none of the assignments I reviewed were full, I gave max grades to many because I think the person tried really hard to make it. Imagine this situation: you are not a programmer, not a graphic designer, not a writer and with a week you need to make a prototype of the game idea you’ve been working on course. This prototype must show the game mechanics and aesthetics, should be playable… And can be non digital? Come on, we are here learning the concepts of developments digital games and the instructor says that we can make a non digital prototype? Some people did it, and I can say for sure that I couldn’t imagine the real game. I made a digital prototype using the knowledge acquired from the first course, but as you can imagine, it is not enough to make our game ideas come true.

- The peer review system: the grading is completely non sense, as I said before, the assignments are complex, so it is difficult to show our ideas clearly in a document, without the abilities to make concept arts or something. In 2 of the 4 assignments 2 of the 3 people gave me max grades and 1 gave me bad grades, and did not left any feedback! One of the assignments when I first submitted it I got 12/20. Then, when I resubmitted it, without changing a comma, I got 20/20. So I think this system must change, maybe the mentor should do it.

If you want to do all the specialization, ok, go and do this course. But, if this is not your objective, do not waste your time.

By Moisés P

Feb 13, 2016

The information is good but is going too fast and I don't feel I have learned much from it. I'm on week 3 and I'm still not sure of how to make my assignments in a proper way. The quizzes are very confusing too and sometimes I felt frustrated.

By Ahmed A

Feb 28, 2017

not good

By David A

Aug 20, 2017

While the content itself was very helpful, I feel that the grading itself is very broken. To start, a "passing grade" is 60%, which is failing by most other grading standards. Additionally, and even more so, to even pass you need to be rated "above and beyond" on a couple of criteria. I'm personally an over-achiever, so I try to do that anyway--but, it's really disheartening when I put myself into it, and get graded by my peers saying that I "went above and beyond" but not "epic". Seems very very subjective. The very fact that I can get a 100% from one reviewer and 40% from another seems to indicate that the scoring mechanism could use some work.

By Anastasia R

Feb 08, 2018

It's so boring and so far away from realities of contemporary game development so I lost all the will to see these courses at all, for several months.

By mandar s

Aug 09, 2016

why intro is so long?

it becomes boring without any physical interpretation of knowledge

can't you take at least one design project or demo

many things were said but very little went in head

By Piotr R

Dec 05, 2017

This lecturer is really annoying, ... ...

...

..., right?

No seriously, the majority of the material seems quite obvious and grading rules of the submissions are so unclear ("Wow, that was amazing!"). Moreover, the pacing of the submission feels unbalanced. A game design document made in a week? o_O

By David E

Mar 09, 2018

The course content itself is good but the marking scheme for submissions is silly. For example, one of the main marking points is 'The submitted file opens correctly', yet you can be marked either 1,3 or 5 for this. With 3 described as being 'You did it' and 5 being 'Wow, that's amazing'. It's opening a file, nothing more. Its not going be be amazing. It should be '0 - Doesn't open' or '5 - Successfully opens'. This 1,3,5 marking with these labels is throughout

By Bernhard H

Feb 01, 2016

While I really liked the first course I have massive problems with this course. The first 2 assignments, a high concept document and a story bible were doable.

But a full GDD and a prototype on week 3 and 4? These aren't part-time tasks for a few days, these are full-time tasks for at least a full month each to do them properly from scratch. These assignments are so unrealistically hard that they demotivate. And I'm saying that as someone who already had quite some ideas for one game and even started experimental programming. For people that are taking this specialization without a focus on game design and/or without ideas... this course is going to be hell to finish in time.

By Yunxiang L

Jan 14, 2019

I do not want to be so offensive, but I hold the opinion that this course is useless at all. I will give up my ambition to accomplish the Game Design and Development Specialization after studying half of this course.

First of all, the course itself has a lot of problems. Videos presented by professor, quiz for each small unit and the final assignment for the week, these things have little relevance. Actually I can just complete the quiz without watching videos at all.

Secondly, the assignment workload for each week is not reasonable.For instance, you may write a high concept document in week one and come out with a game prototype in week four, but you cannot complete a game design document in only one week! It is impossible even for native speakers and for most people who study in Coursera we do not just have to learn from Coursera! We may have jobs or we need to seek for a job or we just to study other lessons in campus, we can not just spend one week on this ambiguous course.

Furthermore, the peer review criteria is totally ridiculous! You have only three grades to give others, 1 for accomplish the purpose , 3 for beyond the basic demand and 5 for doing some epic work. The most ridiculous thing is that we should give 1,3,5 points for one demand which is called "Does this assignment is in PDF HTML or TEXT form?" . How to let just uploading files to be "beyond" or "epic"?

To cut the long story short, only people with mature game ideas or only for people who are already act as game designers can fulfill this course successfully but I do not think they need an introductory level course to improve themselves at all.

By Benhur O J

Apr 04, 2019

Pretty poor course. The lectures are incomplete. Most of the learning process is left for the assignments. Finally, the scoring system for the assignments is very subjective leading to unfair evaluation. Please revise this course because it is a pity so low quality while first course is so good.

By Stefan H

Aug 04, 2018

Extremely disappointing, nothing I could use in any practical way.

By Ricardo S A

Dec 03, 2015

One of the worst courses that I have taken in coursera.

The videos feel unstructured without preparation and boring.

The quizes are subjective. You can pass all of then without watching a single video or lecture.

The assignments are interesting but the way of grading them are bad designed and subjective.

Sad, I passed this course without trouble but made me stop wanting to get the full specialization.

Spartans! Review the course or better close it. Its a shame.

By Jason M

Dec 03, 2015

I didn't like the class despite getting 100% on pretty much every assignment. I learned very little from the class. I don't think 99% of what was in the class was useful to me at all. The grading for the class had ludonarrative dissonance with the quizzes. The projects were graded by peers, but the rubric was nonsensical. 1-5 scale for submitting a PDF, for example. So, someone might give you a 1 for submitting the PDF and thus you wouldn't get a full-score. It was just idiotic.

By Mohab R

Jan 19, 2016

Not very informative content, some parts are interesting but not worth the money.

The worst thing is, all assignments are writting work that are evaluated by colleagues, meaning, it is purely objective, to the extent that one question asks if my uploaded file is in a readable format, example pdf, txt...etc and two out of three marking my pdf file as not!!! and not even leaving a comment why they are giving that bad score on obvious things!

By Rishabh r N

Aug 22, 2017

sucks

By Kostiantyn W

Sep 26, 2016

That person should not teach. Nobody. The person is not able to construct a sentence without denial and course has really little information, but lots of empty talking.

By Dmitry K

Sep 23, 2017

Poor organized. Evaluation system based on peer reviews, when you share your ideas and concepts without any protection. Evaluation criteria are very subjective. Very disappointing. I have unsubscribed from whole specialization because of that course

By Dex O

Oct 10, 2016

Don`t put your irrelevant politics in games

By Benjamin P

Apr 29, 2017

The quiz feedbacks are empty, this is not good.

By Robert W

May 01, 2016

After the excellent first course in the specialisation, this was quite a disappointment.

I realise that the subject matter in this course will inevitably involve abstract concepts and subjective opinions, but I didn't really 'get' the way that Casey was presenting the subject given that there were quizzes and assignments to follow.

That's not to say that the videos aren't interesting. But, given their rambling style, they would be much more useful as reference material rather than driving the course, in my opinion.

Many of the questions in the quizzes felt like they'd been added simply to make them up to the correct number. Some were so loose that you could write any answer and I'm sure you'd get a mark!

Also, I'd say not to even start this course unless you have a clear idea for a game. The assignments require you to produce design documents that are tedious, going on impossible, to write without some firm rooted idea to start from.

Maybe if you really want to be a game designer then this will be the course for you. If you are doing the course out of curiosity, for fun, or to learn how to control Unity, I'd give it a miss.

By Eyal B

Mar 19, 2017

Hard to follow, ideas are not organized and are not well presented. Lecturer has many pauses, that even on increased playback speed (x1.25), are still distracting. Do not recommend!