If your aim is to become an artist in the Games industry, then this Game Art degree has been designed to develop your passion, drive and commitment to become a highly talented game artist, turning your dreams and aspirations into tangible, marketable and industry-level game artist skills.
With gamers’ demands for realistic and imaginative graphics having increased as new hardware technology has developed, the Games Art course will help you practise traditional art skills alongside cutting-edge digital artwork and allow for your career pathway to open into a variety of future directions.
Over the three years, your studies will explore the professional and theoretical elements of the games industry, you will also have the opportunity to work on group projects with students from other courses allowing you to design, develop and publish games.
Many of our graduates have become indie developers, freelance artists or professionals within many studios including Climax Games, Codemasters, Airship, Rockstar and more. See student and graduate work at our USW Games blog and follow us Twitter and Instagram.
Your studies will explore professional and theoretical elements of the games industry. You'll also work on group projects with students from other courses to design, develop and publish games for PC, console and mobile game environments.
Year one introduces core art skills, with drawing, sculpting, 3D modelling and texturing taking centre stage, before you progress to more complex technical software. You'll gain a greater understanding of these core skills through the study of comparative anatomy, architecture, environmental design and vehicle modelling, through a series of small projects and external reference trips.
In the second year, you'll look more closely at concept art, high-end modelling and visual design for any game platforms. Collaboration with other courses will allow you to complete a live brief in a scenario that simulates the industry.
In year three, you can specialise in character and creature art, vehicle modelling, environment design, and creation and concept art, or you can choose to collaborate across multiple areas and work within a games team as a production artist. Written elements will underpin your creative work and shape your future industry direction.
Your practical work will be strengthened by taught modules in the culture and history of game-playing, which will give you a contextual background. There are also elements of business studies to ensure you have a thorough understanding of the industry and the computer games marketplace.
You will work on ‘Live’ projects with team pitches to industry studios. Studying through a combination of lectures, seminars and workshops, you will also participate in group and individual project work; supervised independent learning; open and resource-based learning; e-learning and production practice.
You will be assessed 100% through coursework.
There is currently no accreditation associated with this course.
The entry criteria below shows the qualification range within which the University will make offers. Most offers we make are at the top of the range, but we take all aspects of an application into consideration and applicants receive a personalised offer. Combinations of qualifications are acceptable and other qualifications not listed here may also be acceptable.
Interview: An interview and portfolio are required for this course. Your portfolio should demonstrate strong artistic and design abilities. Your portfolio should be a carefully constructed selection of your work, preferably produced during your most recent course of study, and can include any personal work or projects that you feel are relevant to the course. All work should be well organised and presented. You should be prepared to discuss your work at interview as well as any designers, animators and/or artists who have influenced you.
BCC - CDD to include a relevant art and design subject (this is equivalent to 104-80 UCAS tariff points).
Pass the Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate Diploma with Grade C/D in the Skills Challenge Certificate and BC - CD at A Level with a relevant art and design subject (this is equivalent to 104-80 UCAS tariff points).
BTEC Extended Diploma Distinction Merit Merit - Merit Merit Pass in a relevant subject (this is equivalent to 112-80 UCAS tariff points).
Pass the International Baccalaureate Diploma with a minimum of 80 UCAS tariff points from Higher Levels to include a relevant subject
Pass the Access to HE Diploma with a minimum of 80 UCAS tariff points
GCSEs: The University normally requires a minimum 5 GCSEs including Mathematics/Numeracy and English at Grade C or Grade 4 or above, or their equivalent, but consideration is given to individual circumstances
We also welcome international applications with equivalent qualifications. Please visit the country specific pages on our international website for exact details.
In general, international applicants will need to have achieved an overall IELTS grade of 6.0 with a minimum score of 5.5 in each component.
However, if you have previously studied through the medium of English IELTS might not be required, but please visit the country specific page on our international website for exact details. If your country is not featured please contact us.
Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.
Find out how to pay your tuition fees in full or by payment plan.
This course is eligible under the Enhanced Learning Credits scheme for Ex-Armed Forces personnel.
International Scholarships are available for self-funding international students.
Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.
|Kit (Uniform and Equipment)||£100||
Drawing Equipment (required all academic years)
|Kit (Uniform and Equipment)||£500 - £1500||
PC Hardware (required all academic years)
|Kit (Uniform and Equipment)||£10 - £20||
Software (required all academic years). Cost is per month.
|Kit (Uniform and Equipment)||£100||
Wacom Tablet (required all academic years)
|Kit (Uniform and Equipment)||£60||
USB Hard drive (required all academic years)
|Kit (Uniform and Equipment)||£50||
Grad Show materials in year 3
|Kit (Uniform and Equipment)||£100||
Books (per year)
|Field Trips||£100 - £1000||
Extra curricular trips . (All academic years)
|Other: Misc. travel/ entry costs for visits||£0 - £100||
All academic years
Apply via UCAS if you are a UK/EU residing applicant, applying for year one of a full-time undergraduate degree, Foundation Year, Foundation Degree or HND and you have not applied through UCAS before. If you are applying to study part-time, to top up your Foundation Degree or HND, or to transfer to USW from another institution, please apply directly.
Apply directly to the University if you live outside the UK/EU.
From small independent to large multinational studios you will develop a range of skills that cover character sculpting , environment art, conceptual artist, technical art, User Interface and vehicle art.
The university is ideally placed in Cardiff, based within a growing local media industry it will provide many opportunities. You will graduate with the potential to succeed across a variety of careers including: game art, game design, animation, indie development, and teaching.
Graduates have been employed at a range of cutting-edge computer game studios including:
As a USW student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.
This includes: one-to-one appointments from faculty based Career Advisers, in person, over the phone or even on Skype and through email via the "Ask a Question" service. We also have extensive online resources for help with considering your career options and presenting yourself well to employers. Resources include psychometric tests, career assessments, a CV builder, interview simulator and application help. Our employer database has over 2,000 registered employers targeting USW students, you can receive weekly email alerts for jobs.
Our Careers service has dedicated teams: A central work experience team to help you find relevant placements; an employability development team which includes an employability programme called Grad Edge; and an Enterprise team focused on new business ideas and entrepreneurship.