Gameplay Prototyping | Abertay University

Gameplay Prototyping


Through a series of combined lecture/practical sessions students will develop the technical and creative skills necessary to create prototypes that demonstrate the functionality of game mechanic design and promote rapid prototyping as a useful evaluation tool and an essential part of the development process.


The aim of this Module is to provide the student with the skills to analyse, develop and critique functional prototypes based on gameplay design.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this module the student should be able to:

1.  Demonstrate a basic understanding of the techniques required to design and develop gameplay prototypes.

2.  Reflect upon the game characteristics and mechanics to support the design and development of prototyped games.

3.  Iteratively design and develop gameplay prototypes demonstrating an appreciation of required functionality and user experience.

4.  Evaluate the design and implementation of a gameplay prototype.

Indicative Content

1 Evolution of Gameplay Mechanics:

Examine how the implementation of gameplay mechanics has changed over time.

2 Gameplay Analysis:

Critically analyse existing implementations of game mechanics.

3 Gameplay Mechanics Functional Analysis:

Analyse and de-construct game mechanics design into their component parts required for functional implementation.

4 Gameplay Implementation:

Explore the range of tools and techniques available to implement gameplay in prototype games.

5 Iterative Development:

Understand the development process of rapid game prototyping.

6 Evaluation Methods:

Identify how gameplay implementation can be evaluated in terms of desired functionality and user experience.

7 Aesthetics:

Consider the effect of aesthetics on gameplay implementation and how aesthetics can be used to enhance the user experience.

8 Game Balancing:

Explore and implement techniques to balance individual elements of a gameplay prototype and examine the effect this has on the overall user experience.

9 Emergent Gameplay:

Explore the techniques that can be applied to create emergent gameplay within prototype games.

Statement on Teaching, Learning and Assessment

The module is taught using a series of lectorials combining short lecture segments, practical exploration and small-group discussions. During their independent study time, students gain further experience with the material through a range of practical exercises. The first half of the module will be focused on developing skill and knowledge. During the second half of the module the students will focus on the development of their prototype portfolio for their coursework submission. Assessment will take the form of a summative submission at the end of the module. Students' learning is supported through in-person and online interactions with teaching staff and lab assistants, and the use of web-based development and visualisation tools.

Teaching and Learning Work Loads

Total 200
Lecture 0
Tutorial/Seminar 0
Supervised Practical Activity 24
Unsupervised Practical Activity 24
Assessment 80
Independent 72

Guidance notes

Credit Value – The total value of SCQF credits for the module. 20 credits are the equivalent of 10 ECTS credits. A full-time student should normally register for 60 SCQF credits per semester.


We make every effort to ensure that the information on our website is accurate but it is possible that some changes may occur prior to the academic year of entry. The modules listed in this catalogue are offered subject to availability during academic year 2018/19 , and may be subject to change for future years.