Computer Games Technology

Develop applied skills with cutting-edge games technology to further enhance your specialist career prospects

Star Course Overview

Why take this course?

Our membership of TIGA (the UK games industry's trade association) supports us in producing graduates who are equipped with the right skills for employment. The quality of our courses and teaching was recently acknowledged when we won the 2014 TIGA Award for 'Best Educational Institution'.

The University of Portsmouth is a member of the PlayStation® First Academic Program run by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE), which provides access to professional development hardware (i.e. PlayStation 4 development kits) and software tools for both staff and students. We organise a steady stream of industry speakers to visit us throughout the year, providing students and staff with extra opportunities for networking and feedback.

MSc Computer Games Technology provides a global perspective of computer games development and supports you as you develop the advanced skills required to work both within the games industry and also related industries.

The course is project-based, allowing you to define the focus and scope of your work, whilst building technological expertise and gaining the hands-on experience of designing, creating and managing your own computer games artefact, prototype or research study.

What will I experience?

On this course you can:

  • Design and develop software, systems, 2D/3D assets, and innovative solutions for a major project of your choice
  • Use our cutting-edge, industry-standard game content creation software, VR hardware, motion capture facilities and console development kits in the building of your project
  • Have the opportunity to engage in real-world, client-based research

What opportunities might it lead to?

The specialist knowledge and focused research skills you will gain on the course will be beneficial and applicable in a range of technology-related careers. Depending on your project choice, you’ll be prepared to find employment internationally within the computer games industry, or in other areas where computer games technology is making an impact, such as Virtual Reality, Film, Training, Healthcare and Simulation.

Our students have pursued a wide range of project topics, including:

  • Computer games programming and technical design
  • Games research and critique
  • Virtual reconstruction and tourism of historic buildings
  • Virtual Reality for healthcare
  • Education, training and simulation
  • 3D modelling

Key Facts

1 year full time, 2 years part time
A minimum of a second-class honours degree in Computing or an art-based subject with a significant computing component, or equivalent professional experience and/or qualifications. An online portfolio submission may be required as part of the selection process. English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.0.

UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students
2016/17 entry: full time: £5,200, part time: Year 1 £3,470 p/a, Year 2 £1,730 p/a*
2017/18 entry: full time: £5,200, part time: Year 1 £3,470 p/a, Year 2 £1,730 p/a*

Full time course is eligible for Government Postgraduate Loan
Part time course is eligible for Government Postgraduate Loan

International students
2016/17 entry: full time: £12,700, part time: Year 1 £8,470 p/a, Year 2 £4,230 p/a*
2017/18 entry: full time: £13,300, part time: Year 1 £8,870 p/a, Year 2 £4,430 p/a *

*Tuition fee is subject to annual increase.

View tuition fee terms and conditions
View additional course costs

+44 (0)23 9284 2421
School of Creative Technologies
Programme specification

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Light bulb Structure & Teaching

On this course we promote careful planning, implementation, evaluation and reflection on subject-related issues, while at the same time encouraging you to build on your creative and technical games development expertise.

The course provides you with the opportunity to research, design and develop a major computer games artefact, prototype or study. In addition to one-to-one academic guidance from two project supervisors, the lifecycle of your project is also supported by self-directed taught units from start to finish, currently covering topics such as:

  • Project Context and Definition: Identifying the background, scope and context of your project, and formulating a project plan.
  • Professional, Academic and Research Development: Identifying your own strengths, areas for development and refined career goals.
  • Project Design and Development: Shaping the project as it comes together, and responding proactively to development issues.
  • Project Evaluation and Resolution: Acting upon feedback from the project to refine the outcome, before reflecting upon and evaluating your success.

Teaching and Assessment

The course is bespoke, focusing on your own chosen project. You are supported regularly via taught units and workshops by academic staff, as well as via guidance received throughout the project from two project supervisors. There are ample opportunities for peer feedback too, so you have plenty of channels through which you can gauge your progress.

How are you assessed?

Your overall assessment for your MSc will is conducted implicitly using the taught units. By completing the assessments for the taught units you contribute to your overall project grade, with the added benefit that after each taught unit you receive personalised feedback on how the project might be improved.

Dr Neil Dansey

Tutor's View

Dr Neil Dansey
Course Leader

Our MSc in Computer Games Technology allows you to develop your own bespoke learning plan to support your chosen career path. It is a great way to build up the momentum and focus you need to break into industry. Your specialist project will be supported by our industry-standard facilities, including Games Development, Motion Capture and Virtual Reality Labs, enabling a wide range of careers in programming, graphics, design and entrepreneurship/management.

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Monitor Facilities & Features

The Games Labs

These labs contain the latest console development kits for our games students, as well as the latest versions of content creation software such as 3ds Max, Maya, Z-Brush, and Unreal Engine 4. As members of the PlayStation First Program, You’ll also have access to PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita development kits, giving you that extra edge with regard to employability.

Specialist Software and Equipment

In addition to the Games labs you will find many other computer labs with a full range of multimedia software available for you to use. You’ll also find specialist hardware and software resources at your fingertips, including:

  • The Virtual Reality Lab, with stereoscopic 3D projectors, Oculus Rifts, virtual treadmill and Leap Motion equipment
  • Motion capture facilities, with facial capture and real-time feed into Unreal Engine 4
  • Music studio and sound recording equipment
  • TV studio with green-screen and live TV capability
  • Audiovisual equipment available to hire for use in your projects
  • Print and production workshops

University Library

Modern, comfortable and a great learning environment, our library offers a wealth of information including 400,000 books, DVDs, maps and thousands of online ejournals and newspapers. Many electronic resources are available anywhere, 24/7 and our friendly staff are always on hand to help.

Budgeting for your studies

There may be extra costs arising from your studies which you will need to consider when planning your expenditure.

Some are common costs to all courses of study. These may include the cost of study texts, reference books, photocopying and computer supplies. Others relate to specific courses and may include field trips, materials and specialist equipment.

Other costs to consider

Sundry materials and CDs, DVDs may be required costing around £50-£100 each year.

If you choose to complete a project not supported by existing University resources, you may wish to purchase additional materials or software. These costs will depend on the nature of the project. Also, if the project involves working with an external client, you may have to pay travel costs for attending occasional development meetings. These may be in the region £50 - £100.

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Mortarboard Careers & Opportunities

Career prospects

The rapid growth of the computer games industry, along with the ever evolving and advancing nature of technology means that the demand for specialist skills in computer game technology and development is on the rise. Through extensive use of the latest versions of industry-standard hardware (console development kits) and software you will gain in-depth knowledge of the principles underlying these evolving technologies. It will prepare you for lifelong learning and rapid adaptation in technical industries.

Depending on the focus of your self-directed project and your specific career plans, you can develop specialist skills to work in games design, programming, art production and project management, or a range of other technical roles.

Career planning

One of the benefits of studying at Portsmouth is the support that we provide to our Master's and Research Degree students in career planning. Our careers and recruitment service can assist you in career research and finding employment opportunities. Help is also available if you wish to find a part-time job while studying your degree.

We offer our postgraduate students and alumni one-to-one appointments with a careers adviser, or an online service for those not able to travel back to the University. Our alumni can call on our career services for five years after graduation.

In addition, regular employability events offer you the chance to meet employers, find out about different career sectors and improve your applications or CV. The Graduate Summer Programme provides a range of guidance and employability seminars and workshops.

Benefits of Postgraduate Study

Regardless of whether you are seeking to build on your studies, further your career or pursue a career change, a postgraduate qualification adds to your achievement record.

  • Postgraduate study may greatly improve your chances of getting that first break.
  • Many graduate employers prefer the higher intellectual rigour displayed in postgraduate students.
  • Recruiters for roles requiring specialist knowledge or research particularly target those with higher level qualifications.
  • Postgraduate study shows you can take the challenge of in-depth study; acquiring transferable skills in team working and problem solving techniques.
  • If you have a passion for a particular subject, postgraduate study can also be something undertaken as part of your own development at an appropriate time in your life.

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Apply now

Online application form

Apply direct using our online form

Your application will be received by the University's Admissions Team before being transferred to individual departments for consideration and processing.

Postgraduate Information Days

Our Postgraduate Information Days for 2016 entry have now finished.

If you would like to visit the campus you can download our free walking tour for a self-guided tour of the University. You can visit Monday - Friday between 8.30am and 4.00pm. We have an open-door policy so you will be able to take a look into our buildings, speak to some of our support services and get a feel for the campus. Find out more information about our self-guided walking tours.

If you are unable to visit us, why not contact the admissions team for your course of interest via our course pages.

If you have any further enquiries about postgraduate study at Portsmouth, including advice on the Postgraduate Loan for 2016 entry plus scholarships and bursaries available visit our postgraduate pages.

International Students

Staff from our international Office regularly attend overseas exhibitions. To find out more about these and our visits to your region see our International Office exhibitions page.

Fees and Funding

Find out more about fees and funding available to you at Portsmouth.