Animation has come a long way to think that it has simply started out as experimentation. People discovered that they could tell a story by animating hand-drawn illustrations, and so they tried it out. Then, the first-ever animated feature-length movie was released, and everything was forever changed.
The popularity of animation as an art form began to rise exponentially, and right now, animation can be seen in various forms of entertainment medium. We see a ton of animated films and TV shows now, and we also see a ton of animated video games.
Because of this massive development of animation, more and more people are starting to express their passion for it. Animating for a film or show is the most popular route for aspiring animators. But another popular choice is animating for a video game.
But learning how to design a game is not something that can be done overnight. It takes a lot of studying and practice. Not to mention, it also needs a lot of skills to be mastered. Some of these needed skills include computer literacy and familiarity with operating systems and, of course, creativity and imagination.
So, how do you get to learn all about game design? Simple — just go to a school that offers game design classes and study there.
It sounds simple enough, but there is still one question that needs to be addressed. How much does it cost to go to a game design school, particularly in Canada?
The Cost of Game Design School in Canada
To get it out of the way, you should know that attending a game design school is going to be expensive. You have to prepare yourself in spending a lot of money to attend classes and hone your skills as a game designer.
It’s a little tricky to try and give an exact answer to this question because it will depend on the school that you’re going to go. If we have to give an estimated guess, it would probably at around $30,000 in total. So, yeah — game design schools don’t come cheap at all.
If you truly want to get a better look at the possible cost you’re going to pay, then here four examples of schools that offer game design classes in Canada and how much they cost.
Vancouver Institute of Media Arts (VanArts)
True to its name, the Vancouver Institute of Media Arts — or VanArts, for short — offers a ton of degrees and programs in relation to media arts. They have programs for 2D/3D animation, acting for film and television, visual effects, web development and interactive design, and professional photography. And of course, they also offer programs for game design.
This program consists of four terms in the span of 12 months. And in its entirety, the tuition fee costs $30,750 for Canadian students and $37,750 for international ones.
The Game Design program at Fanshawe College is an intensive three-year advanced diploma that really does in-depth in their training. The program’s goal is to provide the students with skills, both professional and artistic, that are necessary to create compelling and innovative games.
Fanshawe’s Game Design Program costs $3,666.67 per term (for Canadians) and $8,068.71 per term (for international students). And since this is a three-year program with six terms, then the total costs will be $22,000.02 for Canadians and $48,412.26 for international students.
Toronto Film School
Toronto Film School offers three programs that are related to game design. Two are on-campus programs with six terms in the span of 18 months — and these are Video Game Design and Animation and Video Game Design and Development. Meanwhile, the third one, also called Video Game Animation, is an online program with eight terms and a duration of 24 months.
Each term in Toronto Film School amounts to $5,745 (for the first four terms) and $6,089 (for the last remaining terms). This means that the two on-campus game design programs will cost $35,158 in total for Canadians. For international students, there will be an additional $18,458.
On the other hand, the online Video Game Animation program amounts to $915 per course. And since it has 21 courses in all, its total fee would be $19,215. Unlike the first two, this program requires no additional fee for international students.
Visual College of Art and Design of Vancouver (VCAD)
The Visual College of Art and Design of Vancouver, or VCAD for short, offers two programs in relation to game design. The first is, of course, aptly named Game Development and Design, which is a three-year program with a total of six terms. Aside from game design and animation techniques, this program also offers art classes in traditional artistic techniques like colour theory and life drawing. The total tuition for this is $37,325.06 for Canadians and $46,307.81 for international students.
The second program that they offer is the Mobile Game Design and Development program. It is a lot similar to the previous program, but this one focuses on the emerging field of mobile application design and development. It’s a 12-month program with a total of four terms in all. And its tuition fee amounts to $22,970.68 for Canadians and $28,549.93 for international students.
A video game is an artwork of its own, and nowadays, game design is a thriving field. With this, it just makes sense that there are a ton of aspiring game designers out there. And these aspiring game designers are quite lucky because there are a lot of schools that they can go to to learn more about game design and hone their skills.
However, you should note that it’s not cheap to go into a game design school. As what you can see in the schools mentioned above, the tuition more or less costs $30,000. And though there are still other schools not mentioned, you can expect that their tuition is also around the same price. So, yeah — basically, going to a game design school will break your bank. And you have to be ready for it.
But at the end of the day, it will all be worth it. This is because you’ll eventually become the best game designer you can be and you’ll be able to finally create a game that is not only immersive but also really innovative.
Related article: Top 10 Animation Schools in Canada