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6-week course

All Pods / Game Design

Intro to Video Game Design: Learn computer science while making your own Game

This Pod will meet once per week for 6 weeks, starting on July 20, 2024 at 2:00pm EDT/11:00am PDT, with the last session being Saturday August 24, 2024.

By enrolling you confirm this time works for you.

Date and time

Saturday, 2:00pm EDT/11:00am PDT

Group size

3-6 students

Outcome

A github-hosted word-based game

Tuition

$495

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TAUGHT BY

Logan

Princeton University PhD candidate

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Intro to Video Game Design: Learn computer science while making your own Game

[This Pod is for Middle School Students] From classic games like Pac-Man to modern ones like Mario Kart, video games are incredibly fun ways to play, compete, and relax. In this Pod, you’ll learn the basics of game design by creating your very own game! In the first half of the course, you’ll learn about the fundamentals of computer science. These principles apply to game design as well as software engineering and AI/Machine Learning. In the second half, you’ll create your own game in Python. By the end of this Pod, you’ll have a working version of the game of your choice! This Pod is designed for beginner programmers. You will make one of the following games: Rock, Paper, Scissors, Shoot; Guess What Number I’m Thinking Of; Hangman; Wordle; or a Text-Based Adventure Game. Each session will include a short lecture and live coding exercises. Additionally, computer science is a complex subject, so there will be weekly homework assignments to reinforce the material. You must complete the assignments before the next session so that you don’t fall behind. I will be there every step of the way to help you learn programming. I’m excited to introduce you to the interesting world of computer science!

ABOUT THE MENTOR

Logan

Princeton University PhD candidate

Hi! My name is Logan, and I graduated from Stanford in 2020 with a B.S. in Symbolic Systems and a minor in Spanish. My concentration was in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI), which allowed me to combine psychology and computer science. Next, I attended Princeton and studied social psychology, receiving my M.A. in 2022. I've been a mentor at Polygence since 2021. I would like to mentor students with interests in psychology, HCI, sociology, or any combination of the three! In my free time, I am an avid juggler, and I have a YouTube channel where I make tutorials about how to juggle. I also love staying active by doing martial arts and lifting weights. I'm excited to talk about research and hobbies with my mentees!

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Intro to Video Game Design: Learn computer science while making your own Game

Week by week curriculum

Week 1

Student & Mentor Introductions Overview of Pods: Downstream Topics: 2D or 3D game design; data science; AI/machine learning; software engineering Session 1 Material Presentation Introduction to computer science Basic Data Types (integers, floats, strings, Booleans) Introduce assignment and answer any questions Start coding exercises

Week 2

Review of Basic Data Types coding exercises Session 2 Material Presentation Container Data Types (lists, tuples, sets, and dictionaries) Introduce assignment and answer any questions Start coding exercises

Week 3

Review of Container Data Types exercises Session 3 Material Presentation Control Flow (if/else statements, for/while loops) Introduce assignment and answer any questions Start coding exercises

Week 4

Review of Control Flow coding exercises Session 4 Material Presentation How to plan out your game in pseudocode How to test your code as you go Introduce assignment and answer any questions: Begin working on your game

Week 5

Session 5 Material Presentation How to stress test your code and make it robust Review of common errors (e.g., index-out-of-bounds errors, misspellings, NULL/incorrect inputs) Continue working on your game

Week 6

Share your game with your classmates Play each other’s games and provide feedback