Environment Art Production


In this module students will engage with the creative and technical processes involved in the design and production of game environment art. Player engagement with and perception of these spaces will be critiqued, with consideration for visual style, layout, and environmental storytelling. By the end of this project students will have gained experience in the conceptualisation, planning, modelling, texturing, and construction of game environments, which will be particularly beneficial to those who have an interest in progressing into game art roles.


The aim of this module is to provide the student with specialist skills in the critique, design, and art production of game environments.

Learning Outcomes

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

1.  Carry out visual and design research in order to develop an innovative and expressive concept for a game environment project

2.  Demonstrate a technical understanding of game engines, game art pipelines, and software solutions for game environments

3.  Demonstrate a critical understanding of the conceptual and practical issues surrounding the design and realisation of game environments, considering visual style, spatial design, and user experience

4.  Iteratively design and develop an original game environment, and present this work in a manner consistent with professional practice

Indicative Content

1 Visual research and concept design

Research real-world / fictional spaces and visual styles. Develop planning materials and concept designs in support of an environment art project.

2 Level design and player interaction

Apply knowledge from level design theory and user interaction and UX design to your understanding of environment art, layout, and navigation.

3 Spatial design

Consider architectural theories and principles when developing concepts for a virtual environment.

4 Environmental storytelling

Investigate how game worlds, spaces, and immersive environments create atmosphere and tell stories through layout, props, lighting, and textures.

5 3D modelling

Design, build and unwrap 3D models appropriate for application in game engines. Consider sculpting and its application in game environment production.

6 Materials and maps

Paint texture maps and create complex materials for application to surfaces. Consider PBR.

7 Modular kits

Build and implement kits for modular environment design.

8 Environmental animation and movement

Consider how basic environmental animation can be implemented and connected to scripted player interactions.

9 Lighting

Apply static and dynamic lighting within your scenes. Understand light bakes and additional post-processing effects.

10 Game engines

Apply all of the above in-engine to demonstrate the ability to assemble environment art for presentation as part of a game product. Create builds and flythroughs to showcase your work.

Statement on Teaching, Learning and Assessment

In the first six weeks of the term, students will be supported by a series of 6 x 1-hour lectures and 6 x 1-hour technical demonstrations. The former will introduce students to the pertinent concepts and theories that will underpin their critical engagement with the project. The latter will expose students to game environment art production pipelines and implementation in-engine. Throughout the term, students will attend 12 x 2-hour practical sessions. This time will be used for project development with support and formative feedback from the tutor. The assessment will be an assigned environment art coursework. The submission should provide evidence of concept design and development, production work, and the final piece as a game-ready environment.

Teaching and Learning Work Loads

Total 200
Lecture 6
Tutorial/Seminar 6
Supervised Practical Activity 24
Unsupervised Practical Activity 0
Assessment 100
Independent 64

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 2019/10 , and may be subject to change for future years.