Paths

Unity Game Dev Courses: Design

Authors: Michael Baker, Rich Fiore, Joy Horvath, Barret Hudson, MJ Johns, Joshua Kinney, Beatrix Moersch, Thomas Winkley

Intelligent game design is important to the success of a shipped game. This skill path will help you take your game idea and really flesh out the world and mechanics and then... Read more

Beginner

This beginner section will teach you the fundamentals of game design, professional level design, and game mechanic design.

Game Design Fundamentals

by Joshua Kinney

Jul 12, 2018 / 1h 26m

1h 26m

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Description

Have you ever had a killer game idea, but just aren’t sure how to spawn the baddies? In Game Design Fundamentals, you will get hacking and slashing in no time. First, you will get your idea cemented. Second, assess and create your timelines and resources. 3rd, build your Technical Design Document and finally, get your outline assembled, so you can start building your game.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview1m
  2. Creating the Game Premise16m
  3. Planning the Game Development21m
  4. Starting the Development19m
  5. Finalizing the Preparation Steps27m

Fundamentals of Professional Level Design

by Barret Hudson

Oct 2, 2017 / 1h 49m

1h 49m

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Description

Are you a gamer that dreams of building your own levels, either professionally or as a hobby? While modern tools have made this dream more approachable, as a would-be level designer you'll quickly find that your creations fail to live up to your own desires and standards for a fun level. In this course, Fundamentals of Professional Level Design, you'll learn all about the theory and practices professional level designers use to create compelling spaces and gameplay experiences. First, you'll explore basic design concepts and documentation. Next, you'll develop an understanding of the important role of playtesting. Finally, you'll delve into feedback and revisions. When you're finished with this course, you'll have a solid understanding of the tools you'll need to design high quality levels, and be on your way to becoming a professional level designer. Software required: none.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview1m
  2. What Is Level Design?23m
  3. The Language of Level Design24m
  4. Level Design Documentation33m
  5. Polishing the Player Experience27m

Game Mechanic Design Fundamentals

by Thomas Winkley

Jul 11, 2018 / 44m

44m

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Description

Do you have an idea for a stellar game world, but aren’t sure how to figure out the gameplay loop? If so, Game Mechanic Design Fundamentals is the course for you. First, analyze the game's objectives. Next, find the fun within your world. Finally, document and analyze your gameplay, and prepare yourself to iterate after prototyping. Upon completion of this course, you’ll have the understanding and skills necessary to start documenting mechanics for your future game.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview0m
  2. Thinking About the Game Experience11m
  3. Perfecting Your Design Plan12m
  4. Keeping Design and Team Resources in Sync19m

Intermediate

These intermediate courses will teach you about prototyping game systems, iterative level design, and designing modular sets.

Prototyping Game Systems for Swords and Shovels

by MJ Johns

Jul 17, 2018 / 2h 26m

2h 26m

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Description

Prototyping is a valuable part of the development process that all games benefit from. In this course, Prototyping Game Systems for Swords and Shovels, you will learn skills and techniques for prototyping systems to integrate with an existing game loop. First, you will learn to dissect a design document and assess the design needs of the project. Next, you will explore the new systems in the existing project. Finally, you will discover how to playtest the prototype and make changes based on player feedback. When you are finished with this course, you will have a fundamental understanding of prototyping that will help you integrate new gameplay into a larger project. Software required: Unity 3D.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview1m
  2. Understand the Design/Prototype Relationship43m
  3. Building a Prototype Play Space20m
  4. Prototyping Non-combat Systems36m
  5. Adding Juicy Interactions31m
  6. Playtesting and Iterating Based on Feedback12m

Iterative Level Design in Unity

by Rich Fiore

Jul 20, 2018 / 1h 14m

1h 14m

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Description

Have you ever wasted time building a game level that just didn't work? If so this is the perfect course for you. In this course, Iterative Level Design in Unity, you will step through the creative process of level design from Design Document to gray-boxed level. First, you will extract the important information from the design document. Next, you will use Unity's built-in modeling tools to create a rough level to play through. Finally, you will utilize Unity's PolyBrush tools to create a creature concept model. When you are finished with this Unity course, you will not only know how to design and build a gray boxed game level but also how to use all of Unity's modeling tools. Software required: Unity 2018.1

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview1m
  2. Research and Design16m
  3. Blocking the Level with ProBuilder23m
  4. Blocking the Dwarf Mines17m
  5. Animated Props16m

Swords and Shovels: Designing Modular Sets

by Michael Baker

Jul 19, 2018 / 1h 13m

1h 13m

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Description

For decades, modular systems have been used to solve a variety of technical and design problems in game development. Modularity provides the basis for efficiency and flexibility and allows a small set of source elements to be expanded into a much larger whole. In this course, Swords and Shovels: Designing Modular Sets, you’ll learn how to create a design and production ready modular set from pre-existing art assets. First, you'll cover the basics; project setup, choosing a unit basis, and assembling a modular tile set. Next, you’ll beautify the scene by adding set dressing, collisions, lighting and start saving prefabs. Lastly, you’ll assemble the modules you’ve created to create a playable level. By the end of this course, you’ll not only have the confidence to create your own modular development kit, but to create visually stimulating previsualizations for levels. Software required: Unity.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview1m
  2. Overview, Unit Basis, and Module Assembly28m
  3. Collision and Lighting16m
  4. World Building, Testing, and Final Adjustments26m

Advanced

These advanced courses will teach you more about cinematic design and post-processing and polish.

Cinematic Design in Unity with Cinemachine and Timeline

by Joy Horvath

Jul 17, 2018 / 1h 47m

1h 47m

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Description

Cut scenes are an excellent way to communicate important information to your players while adding extra polish to your game, but developers often don’t know where to start when it comes to designing and implementing them. In this course, you'll learn the principles of narrative design and how to create cut scenes using Unity. First, you’ll review design documents to understand what you need to tell the player in the scene, and storyboard out your designs. Then, you’ll move into Unity and use Timeline and Cinemachine to recreate your storyboard in the engine. Finally, you’ll take these new tools a step further by building a small triggered cut scene event. By the end of this series, you’ll feel more confident about designing cut scenes for your own game, and using the suite of cinematic tools available in Unity.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview1m
  2. Introduction 5m
  3. Working with Design Documents 9m
  4. Storyboarding 26m
  5. Building the Opening Cut Scene 1h 3m

Swords and Shovels: Post Processing and Polish

by Michael Baker

Jul 19, 2018 / 54m

54m

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Description

Post processing is crucial for capturing art direction and bringing game worlds to life. In this course, Swords and Shovels Post Processing and Polish you’ll learn how to work with the Post Processing Stack, create atmospheric FX and establish a distinct sense of place. First, you’ll access a level from the Swords and Shovels project and quickly cover project settings for maximizing quality, the photographic basis of post processing FX, installing the post processing stack, and working with post processing settings. Next, you'll begin adding lighting and particle-based atmospheric FX such as fog, water drips, and cave bats to your scene to add the more interesting look and feel to the level. Lastly, you’ll create a final polishing pass to ensure that we capture art direction and create a distinct sense of place. By the end of this course, you should have a firm grasp of how to create a distinctive look to your modular level. Software required: Unity.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview0m
  2. Overview and Installation of the Post Processing Stack8m
  3. Working with Art Direction, Authoring Profiles, and Creating FX24m
  4. Integrating FX and Post Processing19m

Interactive Sound Design with Wwise for Unity

by Beatrix Moersch

Sep 7, 2018 / 3h 11m

3h 11m

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Description

Looking to familiarize yourself with the world of interactive audio? In this course, Interactive Sound Design with Wwise for Unity, you'll learn the basics of interactive sound from conception through to final in-engine integration. First, you'll dive into assessing the sound needs of an existing game and how to efficiently develop those sounds. Next, you'll explore the process from initial in-DAW design and asset creation to interactive Wwise implementation. Finally, you'll learn how to perform a full Unity integration and a playable project build. By the end of this course, you'll have the fundamental knowledge of video game audio creation and implementation to utilize in your own projects. Software required: Unity 2018 and Wwise 2017.2.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview1m
  2. Setup: Preparation and Assessment11m
  3. Foley: Character Sounds39m
  4. SFX: Weapons and Enemies47m
  5. Ambiences: Creating Atmosphere27m
  6. Music: Stems and Stingers40m
  7. Mixing: Fitting It All Together24m

What you will learn

  • Level Design
  • Design Documentation
  • Building a Game Design Doc
  • Modifying a Game Design Doc
  • Building a Level Design Doc
  • Prototyping and making/documenting decisions based on the prototype results.
  • Finding Fun
  • Unity’s Post Processing Stack
  • Building Modular level sets for quick building
  • Integrating with Systems

Pre-requisites

It is recommended that you watch the Unity Game Dev Courses: Fundamentals path.

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