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Systems & Level Design - CUNY BA Option

Program Description

Game design and development encompass a lot of disciplines, but "game designer" is also a specific role in the production process. System Designers establish the foundational logic and mechanical plan for how a game operates and build the mechanics that bring the game world into existence. Level Designers create the step-by-step experience and determine parameters of play on each area in the game world. This concentration prepares students for roles that involve designing these mechanics and parameters. While less code-intensive than the Game Programming concentration, students will be expected to learn high-level programming languages. Students will be able to pursue careers outside of the industry in adjacent fields with experiential design components, such as entertainment, the arts, and tech.

Course Requirements

GENERAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS [30c]


ENG 110 - Freshman Composition (English Composition 1)

ENG 210 - Writing for the _ (English Composition 2)

COM 2404 - Interpersonal Communication (Individual & Society)

RUSS 293 - Folklore in Translation (World Cultures & Global Issues) HIS 3209 - History of Technology (US History) CSCI 127 - Intro to Computer Science (Scientific World)

MATH 101 - College Algebra [or higher] (MQR)

ECO 100 - Introduction to Economics (Individual & Society)

ISP 236 - Truth and Creativity (Creative Expression)

Any Lab Science Course


CONCENTRATION REQUIREMENTS [45-48cr]


CST 1101 - Computer Programming and Problem Solving

CST 2403 - C++ Programming I

SCI 31106 - Game Design 1

SCI 31921 Games and Their History: Game Systems Analysis

SCI 31920 - Intro to Game Programming SCI 31923 - Game Programming 2

SCI 31925 - Game Programming 3

SCI 31924 - Level Design

SCI 31926 - Playing With Stories

SCI 31922 - Game Studio

GD 102 - Beyond Games

MEDP 360 - 3D Virtual Environments

STAT 213 - Introduction to Applied Statistics

ECO 3140 - Game Theory

SOC 3251H - Sociology of the Internet and New Media

DHUM 78000 - Special Topics in the Digital Humanities*


Elective Choices 

Students are welcome to choose electives from any other concentration or cluster. Students in SYSLVL are highly encouraged to choose one of the following clusters:


  • Advocacy & Organizing

  • Data Analytics

  • Economy Design

  • Fabrication & Physical Design

  • Games for Learning

  • Player Motivation & Interaction

  • Player Social Dynamics

  • Youth Development

Featured Course Descriptions

MTEC 2210 - Game Design and Interactive Media

Game Design and Interactive Media is a cross-disciplinary foundation for the design of games and interactive multi-media technology for artists, engineers, scientists and technologists. Students learn human-centered design principles and apply these methodologies to collaborative team-based projects across web interactive, mobile, games, virtual & augmented reality, biomedia, and environmental installation. Using case studies, brainstorming processes, and rapid analog and digital prototyping, students learn design thinking and problem solving techniques to enhance usability, incorporate sensory experience, influence perception, increase appeal, and make more effective interactive design decisions.


GD 102 - Beyond Games

This course explores how games are used beyond entertainment by artists, storytellers, educators, and others. The class will be divided into four sections focusing on: games as art, games as story, games as social interaction, and games as tools for learning and social change. Students will read a variety of articles as well as play games relating to these topics. Students will develop educational games and learn about game analysis and criticism.


SOC 32501H: The Sociology of the Internet and New Media

This class will examine the social consequences of new media. The central question in the course is how new communications technologies and forms (e.g. the internet, the mobile phone, social media) are changing the shape of social relations and interactions. In this course, we will define old media as communications media that offer a more-or-less one-way flow of information from a producer to a reader or viewer. New media, by contrast, can be understood as more interactive, permitting media consumers to become producers in their own right. They involve a less distinct boundary between the producers and the recipients of information. As we will see, the transition toward new, more interactive forms of media has enormous implications for the way that society is organized. The way that we relate to each other and, more generally, the way that we produce and consume meaning has changed rapidly in recent years. In this class, we assess these changes, surveying a wide range of cutting edge research and commentary on the social consequences of new media.

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