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

4.4
1,110 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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201 - 225 of 276 Reviews for Principles of Game Design

By Dmitry B

Feb 08, 2016

The course is not bad, right? It gives you interesting texts to read, right? And explains a design process, right? Is it OK to say right after each sentence? (English is not my first language, right).

By Ivan A

Oct 10, 2016

The course is great but there is some room for improvement. One awesome way to improve learner experience, I think, would be to provide one or two examples about what is expected to deliver for each activity (good/bad examples from previous courses, preserving anonymity?).

I know a lot of creativity is involved in the process, but sometimes I felt like I was wandering in the dark, trying to complete an assignment without knowing whether I understood appropriately the instructions.

By Marc T

Dec 03, 2015

Once you set the video speed to 1.5 it improves a lot ;-)

By René S K

Dec 20, 2015

The templates are very good, but the course videos are too general.

By Mykyta T

Oct 30, 2017

The course itself is nice, but everything about the peer-graded assignments for weeks 2-4 just doesn't work.

By Daniel M

May 06, 2016

Great content and great teacher. But I found the assignments and the quizzes not that great. I reckon the questions and corrections were a bit subjective and time consuming.

By Ricardo M

Dec 06, 2016

Lots of good information.

By Thomas B

May 23, 2017

Learned a lot, but the videos could stand to be a bit more concise.

By Zheng L

Mar 13, 2018

Lots of detailed knowledge of game design, which makes me more professional

By Marc-André M

May 29, 2017

Another good course in the Game Design and Development specialization. I had a lot of fun making the prototype at the end.

By Kamran B

Feb 23, 2016

I learn a lot by doing assignments and reviewing other people's assignments. The important con of this course was some of its quizzes' questions which was ambiguous or badly framed.

By Deborah M M

Nov 19, 2015

Very helpful information with lots of solid, practical advise (prototype! test!) and a few important questions to think about (genderfication? accessibility?) when designing. Excellent learning experience for game design documentation. Quite worth the time and effort. Thank you!

By Rodrigo A S

Feb 10, 2016

The information in this course is great

By Ugo N

Apr 06, 2017

It's okay, I like the instructor and I really enjoyed the assignments creating worlds and such. I found that Im not a complete dud when it comes to making stories, it actually comes easier than you think ,especially if you play games a lot. Towards the end of week 4 though, I was about done with all the theory and wanted to get back to some Unity work, so i bombed through those videos, and actually skipped social impact on designers (or something like that), but I aced the quizzes though. Kind of funny, the only videos I didn't watch are the only ones I got fives in xD

Thank you!

Ugo

By Jackson K

May 01, 2017

Fun course although a little too conceptual for my liking.

By Joel G I

May 08, 2016

There is a lot of writing here, but the course gives a better understanding of what is required outside of actually building a game

By Pavel K

Apr 01, 2019

The main problem of this course is inadequate assessment of student work. No matter how well the work is done, the student cannot point out errors about which he himself admits. I am absolutely not sure that my game documents are not pieces of garbage.

Well, if Casey had learned to use the word "rigt" less often, it would have sounded much more convincing. Trying to calculate how many times for the course he uses it stopped at 300.

I would recommend adding more links to the GDC videos.

But do not forget about the pros. I never thought that I could write so much. A very important skill in expressing your own thoughts through writing. Explaining your idea to others was quite simple. Make it all in the form of a document - not. Thank you for that.

By Dmytro N

Jan 21, 2019

For me, the course was too general, basically an overview saying you can make game ideas out of nothing; however, it's going to be hard to bring them to life. I would enjoy the course much more if it would provide more practical examples of prototyping without code on different engines, provide more details about free-to-play monetisation and game design principles, etc.

By Alex A

Nov 18, 2018

Feels dead - not too much mentor/admin activity.

Also, difficult course to rely solely on peer feedback, as it's all highly subjective.

Overall I had a great fun time further flushing out my ideas and learning how to transform them into working prototypes; however, being siloed to feedback from a few "low-quality" peer reviewers is eroding my experience, it would be better if Coursera/this course could ensure a diversity of peer reviewers. Right now it feels like I'm being trolled vs. receiving actionable feedback to improve.

By Nenad N

Feb 06, 2016

This course has a good starting point, but there are so many things that ended up being wrong that I just can't force myself to give it more than 3 stars (and I'm not sure if it should be 3 or 2 stars). I think this is also the first course on Coursera that didn't get 5 stars from me (not sure if I've given 4 stars once only).

So the bad parts first:

Assignments are so unrealistic it's unbelievable. Week 1 is doable. Week 2 is problematic if you have a complex idea, let's say it's still doable, but you would certainly need more time than expected weekly hour work. Week 3 is insane. It is so out of the scope of this course. And week 4 is even worse, I had to use pen and paper and then explain only 1 of the core mechanics (even that used more than expected weekly hour work).

Some of the quizzes are not fully clear if you are not a native English speaker. Sometimes I had to re-read things several times, and still wasn't sure what I was doing wrong (I realized that only after I managed to literally guess the correct answer).

And most of all grading is the worst I've seen in any course. All of it based on a personal opinion. Hey I even managed not to get full points for a "document is HTML/PDF/....". I mean - how can I not get full points there? It either is or is not a HTML. It's so much subjective that it's making it awful.

Now about the good parts:

Professor did a great job, the course inspired so many ideas for me.

The material is concise and it was a pleasure listening to this course.

Most of the courses are too slow for me, so I have to fast forward them to 1.5 and some even to 2 times speed. I've run this course only on 1.25 speed, which is a good thing. I'm not a native English speaker.

By Francois B

Nov 23, 2015

This course competes with a full specialization on Coursera with a slight flavor of the "Understanding Video Game" course also available on Coursera.

The grading is supported by quizzes and assignment associated to a poor grading system. I found this single class less challenging and interesting than the full specialization on Game Design from CalArts although it allows you to have another view of the process of Game Design in a more engineering way (e.g. writing documentation and not thinking on creating game...).

By Юдин И

Mar 25, 2016

Tasks are different in complexity, but time is given the same.

Speaker's constantly interrupts sentences. Hard to understand for people, who bad speek English.

Questions for peer review are bad:

"Mark 5 if work amasing". But we just student, our work are rough, not amasing. And everybody can grade as he wish.

By Scott T R

Dec 21, 2015

This class started out very rocky and the videos had errors, the quizzes had problems, and the assignments had a poor grading system. Hopefully, these will be corrected in future offerings.

By Julio C B O

Jan 12, 2016

The information is great, but I think they need to make this course in two phases because there was a lot of information to process and the assignments need more time if you want to do a good work. The other part that I didn't like was that the information doesn't really correspond to what you actually need to do for your assignments, I think the course needs more videos and examples of how to create the required documents.

By Chase C

Nov 19, 2017

There was some useful knowledge in this course, however I'm not certain the professor is the best choice. He is very difficult to follow, is not concise, and at times seems to space out during the lecture. The quizzes are even worse, as they don't clearly teach...sometimes allowing for any selection to be the "right" answer. My main comlaint about this course is how they assign a project, with no forewarning of complexity, or prior explanation. For example, the final project is to build a prototype, but in none of the videos did it explain this would be coming. I was very late to submit because I have no knowledge of building a digital game, so I had to rush and figure out a way to build an entirely new game which didn't match all of the digital game documentation I've built through the course. This is a terrible design of the course and needs to be changed.