About this Specialization

Break into the video game industry with theoretical, technical, and business knowledge from one of the world’s best programs.

This Specialization covers the theoretical and practical foundations of video game production using the Unity 3D game engine. The Specialization is taught by faculty at Michigan State University with over fifty years of combined experience building games and teaching game production. Michigan State University is one of the top-rated game design and development programs in North America. You’ll learn to develop a game concept; prototype, test, and iterate on your ideas; and navigate licensing, marketing, and other business considerations. The specialization builds a solid foundation for industry roles as a gameplay designer, level designer, technical designer, technical artist, programmer, or producer. The capstone partner for the specialization is the online game portal Kongregate, which provides an avenue for distribution of the capstone project, as well as a pathway for monetization for aspiring game developers.

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Globe

100% online courses

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Calendar

Flexible Schedule

Set and maintain flexible deadlines.
Intermediate Level

Intermediate Level

Clock

Approx. 6 months to complete

Suggested 4 hours/week
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English...

What you will learn

  • Check
    Pitch a game concept and create a prototype
  • Check
    Develop, test, and polish a working market-ready game
  • Check
    Understand the video game industry from a business and marketing perspective

Skills you will gain

Video Game DevelopmentVideo Game DesignUnity (User Interface)Game Design
Globe

100% online courses

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Calendar

Flexible Schedule

Set and maintain flexible deadlines.
Intermediate Level

Intermediate Level

Clock

Approx. 6 months to complete

Suggested 4 hours/week
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English...

How the Specialization Works

Take Courses

A Coursera Specialization is a series of courses that helps you master a skill. To begin, enroll in the Specialization directly, or review its courses and choose the one you'd like to start with. When you subscribe to a course that is part of a Specialization, you’re automatically subscribed to the full Specialization. It’s okay to complete just one course — you can pause your learning or end your subscription at any time. Visit your learner dashboard to track your course enrollments and your progress.

Hands-on Project

Every Specialization includes a hands-on project. You'll need to successfully finish the project(s) to complete the Specialization and earn your certificate. If the Specialization includes a separate course for the hands-on project, you'll need to finish each of the other courses before you can start it.

Earn a Certificate

When you finish every course and complete the hands-on project, you'll earn a Certificate that you can share with prospective employers and your professional network.

how it works

There are 5 Courses in this Specialization

Course1

Introduction to Game Development

4.8
2,943 ratings
899 reviews
If you love games and want to learn how to make them, then this course will start you down that path. Making games is a creative and technical art form. In this course you will familiarize yourself with the tools and practices of game development. You will get started developing your own videogames using the industry standard game development tools, including the Unity3D game engine and C#. At the end of the course you will have completed three hands-on projects and will be able to leverage an array of game development techniques to create your own basic games. This course is for individuals interested in becoming a game designer, game artist, or game programmer....
Course2

Principles of Game Design

4.4
1,028 ratings
272 reviews
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....
Course3

Business of Games and Entrepreneurship

4.4
615 ratings
121 reviews
As well as a form of art and entertainment, games are about business. Whether you want to work at a game studio, start your own business or make games as a hobby, recognizing the dynamic landscape of the videogame industry is critical to finding your place. This course will introduce you to game production, project management, teamwork skills, and how to position your game ideas and yourself in the broader marketplace. By the end of the course, you will be able to develop an impactful portfolio of game work to get noticed and/or develop an effective business plan to bring your game to market....
Course4

Game Development for Modern Platforms

4.8
608 ratings
126 reviews
The device or "platform" that a game is developed for and played on has a massive impact on the game development process. In this hands-on course you will explore how to develop a game for a variety of modern platforms, including Web, Windows, Mac OS X, iOS, and Android. While building a complete game, you will learn intermediate and advanced game development techniques in the Unity game engine. By the end of the course, you will understand how to develop, refine, package, and prepare your game for distribution on a variety of game platforms. Particular attention will be given to developing a 2D platformer game that supports multiple forms of input (keyboard/mouse, controller, and touch), works across multiple forms of output (screen size, screen resolution, sound), and performs well on a variety of computing devices....

Instructors

Brian Winn

Associate Professor
Media and Information

Casey O'Donnell

Associate Professor
Media and Information

Industry Partners

Industry Partner Logo #0

About Michigan State University

Michigan State University has been advancing the common good with uncommon will for more than 150 years. One of the top research universities in the world, MSU pushes the boundaries of discovery and forges enduring partnerships to solve the most pressing global challenges while providing life-changing opportunities to a diverse and inclusive academic community through more than 200 programs of study in 17 degree-granting colleges....

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Yes! To get started, click the course card that interests you and enroll. You can enroll and complete the course to earn a shareable certificate, or you can audit it to view the course materials for free. When you subscribe to a course that is part of a Specialization, you’re automatically subscribed to the full Specialization. Visit your learner dashboard to track your progress.

  • This course is completely online, so there’s no need to show up to a classroom in person. You can access your lectures, readings and assignments anytime and anywhere via the web or your mobile device.

  • This Specialization doesn't carry university credit, but some universities may choose to accept Specialization Certificates for credit. Check with your institution to learn more.

  • Time to completion can vary based on your schedule, but most learners are able to complete the Specialization in about 6 months.

  • Each course in the Specialization is offered on a regular schedule, with sessions starting about once per month. If you don't complete a course on the first try, you can easily transfer to the next session, and your completed work and grades will carry over.

  • Prior experience with computer programming and interaction design is a plus, but by no means expected.

  • We recommend taking the 'Intro to Game Development' course first. However, 'Intro to Game Development', 'Principles of Game Design', and 'Business of Games and Entrepreneurship' can be taken in any order. 'Game Development for Modern Platforms' assumes you have the knowledge from the 'Intro to Game Development' course. That is 'Intro to Game Development' is a prerequisite for 'Game Development for Modern Platforms'.

  • Coursera courses and certificates don't carry university credit, though some universities may choose to accept Specialization Certificates for credit. Check with your institution to learn more.

  • You will have a solid foundation to work toward an industry role as a gameplay designer, level designer, technical designer, technical artist, programmer, or video game producer. You will understand the video game industry, and you will be able to work effectively as part of a team to pitch a game concept, develop a prototype, and test and iterate to produce a polished final product.

  • The Specialization will utilize the popular Unity 3D game engine, which is available for free.

More questions? Visit the Learner Help Center.