When becoming a Game Programmer, you'll learn best while doing. You'll code, you'll craft and, in the end, you'll graduate with a gaming portfolio like no other. By the end of your third year at Media Design School, you'll have worked with other like-minded programmers and artists to develop an industry level game, giving you the perfect show-reel to kick start your profession.
Better yet, Media Design School is the only school in New Zealand who has partnered with Sony Computer Entertainment Europe's PlayStation First Academic Development Programme, giving our students the opportunity to develop games for the PlayStation platform. That's just one more reason as to why our graduates are in such high demand.
Careers & Industry
To be a game developer you'll need experience and practical skills to be able to work across multiple game platforms and the ability to collaborate in a group that simulates the industry environment.
In this course, the third year end-of-year project is the closest you'll get to an industry-like experience. You'll be collaborating in a group with fellow programmers and artists to create a commercially viable game, which you can include in your portfolio and show-reel by the time you go on to work as a professional.
You'll also have the opportunity to work with the PlayStation game platform. Media Design School has partnered with Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE) to become the only tertiary institute in New Zealand where students can develop for PlayStation platforms, giving you the edge once you graduate.
Our graduates go to work in game studios here and around the globe, such as Game Loft, Grinding Gear Games, Pik Pok and Krome Studios.
Game career paths include:
- Game programmer
- Software engineer
- AI programmer
"Media Design School graduates are among the best games programmers in New Zealand. The focus on working in mixed teams mimics the conditions found at real game studios, and means graduates hit the ground running once they join our team. They come pre-loaded with all the skills we need, including the soft skills you get working through tough teamwork situations."
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Start your learning with the essential theories, principles and knowledge needed for game programming and development. This includes an overview of C++ programming and practical mathematical skills. You will also gain experience constructing, testing and debugging simple computer games.
Prepare for a major game production by learning the management strategies needed for a collaborative project. You also learn software engineering principles, advanced graphic programming and advanced game programming strategies.
The final year focuses on creating a major game production in conjunction with Bachelor of Creative Technologies (Game Art) students. You'll also identify the strengths and weaknesses encounter during the production process. Students also begin developing for PlayStation platforms Vita and PS4.
To qualify for General Admission, you'll need a minimum qualification of NCEA University Entrance or equivalent, such as:
- An appropriate qualification from an overseas secondary school or tertiary institution, deemed by Media Design School to be sufficient for admission into a bachelors programme.
- CIE (University of Cambridge International Examination)
- IB (International Baccalaureate)
Plus, it is recommended to have the following:
24 NCEA Credits, Level 3 in Technology, Art and Design (minimum)
If you are enroled at a New Zealand secondary school and have not yet completed your NCEA (CIE or equivalent) qualification, you can still apply now for admission. When your NCEA results are available in January, we will check them and contact you.
If you are an international student, you'll need to prove you have sufficient English language skills in order to complete this course. We'll be looking for Academic IELTS 6.0 (minimum), or equivalent qualification if English is not your first language.
Special Entry, Discretionary Entry and Cross Credits
If you don't have university entry, you may still be able to apply for this course. More information about Special Entry, Discretionary Entry and Cross Credits here.
This is not required if you are applying for Game Programming (Bachelor of Software Engineering).
Study at the Media Design School in Auckland, and you can assure your family that you'll be staying in one of the safest and most live-able cities in the world. Auckland is such a diverse city that, no matter where you're from, you'll find food and experiences here that remind you of home.
This wonderful city has nature on its doorstep and, in the same amount of time it takes to fetch a latte, you could travel to spectacular countryside or beaches, all within a stone's throw from the Central Business District.
If you're thinking about making New Zealand your home while you study for your world recognised qualification, you can find more information about making the transition to our beautiful country here.