How studying Creative Computer Game Design at UWTSD has transformed me


Alexei Grasso graduated with an MA Creative Computer Game Design. He told us all about his time here, and how it has shaped the way he approaches his career. 

Creative Computer Games Design

Before starting my course at UWTSD, I had spent two years as an art student at Coleg Sir Gar. I knew little about game design, and the highest aspiration I held for video game design was the ability to become a better artist and to create the stories and worlds that I wanted to create through precisely that medium. Very quickly, however, I learned to shake off a lot of the art student mentality, as I call it, and embrace that of the designer.

“In order to navigate the course, I had to learn to adapt my artistic sensibilities into something that could be useful for creating a game, without necessarily letting my own creativity slide. It was a difficult challenge for me to meet, but it also wasn’t too long before I became used to the way that my course is supposed to operate, and did everything that I could to live up to the standards, even if I stumbled along the way. But for those moments, there is ample support available. When you feel lost and stuck about your work you can ask the lecturers to clarify what you need to do and help you if necessary. The course in general is very challenging, and it gets more challenging with each year, but through patience, fortitude, hard work and paying attention to your work, you can succeed.

“This, in a way, is actually a good snapshot of how exceptional I think Creative Computer Games Design tends to be as far as game design courses go. As far as I understand, not many game design courses tend to focus on the process of game design as much as we do.

“I have grown tremendously from this environment. I have learned about what it takes to be a game designer, I have learned how to deal with working collaboratively on a tight schedule, I have learned how to organize a game project and I have learned to navigate the academic standards that I have to navigate in order to succeed. Studying in this course has granted me an understanding in specific design concepts and processes relating to game design, in particular an understanding of the rigging and skinning processes for bipedal video game characters with Autodesk Maya. I have also had to examine business practices as part of my course, with a mind for possibly setting up a business, which has enabled me to produce a clear strategy for the way that my business could operate upon formation.

“On the whole, my advice to people who want to study game design here at University of Wales Trinity Saint David is to buckle down, don’t be too hard on yourself but take your work seriously, don’t let anything slide too much, and strike a balance wherever you can. But most importantly, believe in yourself, have some confidence in what you can do once your abilities become clear to you, and have faith in your capacity to do well as a student.”

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