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Games Design (Top-Up) BA (Hons)

Key Facts

  • UCAS Code


  • Level


  • Duration

    Full Time: 1 year

  • Starting


  • Fees UK 24/25

    Full Time: £9,250

  • Fees International 24/25

    Full Time: £16,500

  • Location

Get in touch

For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:

UK/EU Students enquiries

0300 303 2772

International Students enquiries

+44 (0)1604 893981


Games Design Top-Up BA (Hons) is structured to prepare students to become Game Designers with practical application taking precedence over theoretical work. You will be expected to already have a good working knowledge of Game Engines, Art packages and design theory.

You will join current third year Games Design BA (Hons) students to work on a number of portfolio-based projects and a substantive personal project. You will be able to share your experiences with current students and collaborate on team projects.

Updated 29/01/2024


  • Up-to-date workstation hardware and software in dedicated laboratories, including Wacom Cintiqs and Wacom Intuos
  • Dedicated Games Labs and Out of Hours Access Labs
  • Guest lectures from industry specialists, previous talks include Rare, Splash Damage, Codemasters, Ubisoft, Lockwood Publishing, Sony and FreeStyle Games
  • Yearly group projects, which allow for a real-life games development experience
  • Industry experienced tutors

Course Content

  • What you’ll learn on Games Design (Top-Up)

    We will give you creative skills, technical software skills and industry knowledge, which are all required by leading games developers. You will produce a personal portfolio of your work to reflect industry and professional practice needs, informed by historical and contemporary references, cultural and social contexts.

    The life cycle of Game production

    You will focus on the design side of the Games Art industry, but you will be exposed to the whole life cycle of game production from the initial ideas process to final release stage. You will work with programmers from the Games Programming BA (Hons) and artists from the Games Art BA (Hons) so that you understand games development for specific markets in 2D and 3D formats.

    Methods of Learning

    We aim to make learning an engaging and enjoyable experience from our extensive online resources and face to face teaching. We will enrich your experiences of Games Design principles, help you to further develop analytical skills, and encourage you to evaluate and recommend solutions required to create engaging gaming experiences.

    Games Design (Top-Up) – Teaching & Learning support

    Teaching and learning occurs through a variety of methods, with practical’s, workshops and learning how to use new techniques and software. Learners will have around 12 hours contact time per week, with the expectation of matching this with their own time. Sessions can be longer or shortened depending on the activity e.g. attending industry events.

    All of the module tutors use our virtual learning environment (NILE) to provide additional resources to facilitate your independent learning.


    Assessment methods include writing specific reports, blogs, articles, giving presentations, and submission of portfolios. All modules are assessed through 100% coursework.

    Please note the modules shown here relate to the academic year 23/24. The modules relating to the academic year 24/25 will be available from June 2024.

      • Module code: CSY3031
        Status: Compulsory
        The purpose of this module is: to emphasie independent learning, development and responsibility, through the creation of a social game following industry practices; implement production process and design of the groups games, through self-directed and supported support from a module supervisor in conjunction with some, tutor lead lectures; implement a game to demonstrate the understanding of the complete development life cycle; publication of the game in the public domain.
      • Module code: CSY3044
        Status: Compulsory
        The objective of the module is to encourage students to explore the potential of innovative or unconventional technology to construct genuinely new, interactive experiences.
      • Module code: CSY3051
        Status: Compulsory
        The main aim of the module is to ensure students are fully aware of the needs and expectations of the contemporary digital industry through an understanding of its social, economic and cultural climate. The module aims to enable students to pitch projects in terms of concept and business models; establishing and maintaining a personal website; identifying trends and market possibilities; encouraging participation in competitions; developing presentation and self-promotional skills; making job applications and preparing for interview.
      • Module code: CSY4021
        Status: Compulsory
        The module integrates and draws together the various aspects of the programme gained during study at levels 4, 5 and 6.The main aim of the module is to ensure students are prepared for their first steps towards the industry, by allowing them opportunity to develop a body of highly polished work demonstrated and refined via regular critiques of work in progress.This module gives them opportunity to specialize on developing content for their portfolio. The work developed will be as close to industry standard and expectations, as feasible, and will be tailored towards the specific areas of the individuals interest such as; Concept Art, Environment Art, Animation, UI design etc.This module is to support through mentoring the individual students on their professional journey.
  • Applicants are expected to have completed a HND, DipHE or FdA in traditional art and design, computing, graphics or a related subject area.

    All selected applicants will be invited for a portfolio review and discussion. International students may submit their portfolio electronically.

    For more more information on how to make an application, please visit our How to Apply page.

    If you are an International student and would like information on making an application, please see our How to Apply page.

    English Language Requirements

    All International and EU students applying for a course with us must meet the following minimum English language requirements:

    • IELTS 6.0 (or equivalent) with a minimum of 5.5 in all bands for study at undergraduate level

    For information regarding English language requirements at the University, please see our IELTS page

  • 2024/25 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 23/24 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

      • UK – Full Time: £9,250
      • International – Full Time: £16,500
    2023/24 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 23/24 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

      • UK – Full Time: £9,250
      • International – Full Time: £15,500

    For information on the scholarships available to you, please see our scholarships page.

    For more information about possible funding options, please visit our Fees and Funding pages.

  • Whatever your ambitions, we’re here to help you to achieve them. We’ll support you to identify the skills you’re learning during your course, find your strengths and secure practical experience so that when it comes to applying for jobs or further study you’ll feel confident in standing out from the crowd. We’ve created the Northampton Employment Promise because we are so confident that if you focus on your studies and complete one of our awards you’ll be highly employable by the time you graduate. Putting you in a great position to secure employment or continue your studies.

    To check out the full list of perks, visit our Student Perks page.