Game design for kids has been a thing for some time now. Game design on its own, has been one of the main industries that has been producing major revenues and creating high-paying jobs for some time now. In the past 20 years or so the game industry has grown so rapidly and extensively that it has become one of the areas many people wish they had invested in. And all the hype about it has escalated for good reasons. The industry is huge because of the extremely large number of customers it tends to provide services to annually. Pretty much everybody out there is either a gamer or knows a couple of people who are!
While at first glance gaming seems to only be for entertainment purposes, it actually isn’t. There are countless benefits in gaming which we are not going to get into at this point but the real question is about those who actually create them. Who are they? What’s it like to be a game designer? What does game design even mean? Well the answer to all these questions lie within another one of our articles “A Brief Look At Game Design” in which we have fully dived into the depth of game design.
But is it really possible for your child to learn to create their own games at a young age? The answer is big shiny glittering YES! Game design for kids is not a new thing. I mean if an adult can make games, why should a child not be able too? The truth is that modern education systems and approaches have made it possible for children to experience the careers of the adults from within their limited levels of ability. These also enable children to pick up and enhance their skills necessary for their future careers with a much better idea of the activities they will be carrying out as a professional of that field.
Similar to robotics and programming, game design also provides countless benefits for the children if they are set on the correct course and directed properly. Read more about the benefits of robotics for children in our article “5 Benefits of Robotics For Kids”. If you are also not sure about what programming is and what it is they basically do, you may want to take a quick glance at our article “Coding, What It Is & What It Isn’t” to get some idea about the matter. In this article we are going to address the top 5 benefits of game design for children to create awareness for the parents about how they can be putting their children’s time into better, more fruitful use.
1. Creativity, Through The Roof!
Coming up with a game is not an easy thing to do. And I’m not even talking about a computer game yet. I’m just talking about a good old fashioned game which children used to play out in the streets back in the 60s and 70s when there were no computer games out there. The game had to be interesting, easy to explain and play but challenging at the same timeIt had to be creative and fresh. It must have had well-though rules that could prevent one from cheating while not creating advantages for a certain person or group. Then there was the authority who was going to enforce the rules and then came the winners and the losers. There had to be some kind of reward. It was supposed to be designed in a way that would not lead to conflicts either.
While creating a computer game may seem to have eliminated some of these issues, which it hasn’t by the way, it has actually made the work even harder. The only thing that has improved with designing a video game compared to old physical games is the fact that there is no need for a moderator as the computer will manage the rules and their executions automatically.
All those mean that the person creating a game must have a very high level of creativity in action. It doesn’t really matter what their position within their team is, they have to have that option if they are willing to work in this industry. They must be highly skilled in coming up with fetching stories and killer game play. This is a skill your child will be developing more robustly if they begin their game design journey early in life.
They will be boosting their creativity by pushing their limits in order to overcome the challenges of their designs. Later on, as they progress deeper in their game design courses, they will get their hands on.
2. Coding Skills, Boosted!
While some more basic games design such as Scratch does not require programming, pretty much every other ground your child may want to cover would need some levels of coding. If the word Scratch in coding and game design sounds alien to you, I highly recommend reading the article “Scratch from Scratch”. We have deeply discussed what scratch is, how it works and differs from the rest of programming languages and how it is used for designing and running basic games by children from all around the world.
By starting a simple game design course, your child will be b b by putting the programming knowledge which time might have acquired whether by themselves online or through classes, into practical use. They will start to get their hands on projects that are much more practical than the typical exercises people learn when taking a programming course. For example your child will be b by creating a simple tic-tac-toe game rather than being forced to to create boring and useless programmes that are used to take in some data from the user and do some mathematical operation such as addition subtraction or or finding the prime number.
As they move on through their game design course they will also learn how to tweak their code and flowchart in order to produce more complex and sophisticated games. Of course this by no means means that they will be creating call of duty out of nowhere but it puts them on the right path for doing so if they wish in the long run.
Whether a hobby, interest or field of profession, areas that require more than one skill to be used simultaneously are often strongly glued to discipline. This is because they must be focused on the task at hand and accurately follow the workflow in order to arrive at ideal results. Game design is an area in which programming and creativity meet. A game designer must be very disciplined in the code they write, following the standards and the work flow that is associated with their project. This is also crucial for releasing the next updates and debugging the game in case there are any bugs present in the code. Having a messy code will not only cause headaches when it comes to making changes, it will also make finding the bugs in a system extremely troublesome. Now at the same time the game designer must be putting their creativity into action in order to meet the requirements of their game.
For example, while designing a game such as Fortnite, the designers must plan everything ahead of time and execute them with cutting discipline on all fronts, whether it is graphics, gameplay, user interface and user experience (UI/UX). If this is done with no discipline, the project will twist within itself so much so that sometimes, the team must go ahead and redo everything from scratch!
The coding skills which we have talked about earlier are also another area that helps with the discipline of the individual. This is due to 2 main reasons. The first one is that coding simply requires a lot of discipline. The programmer must know exactly what they are doing, where they are going to be and how they should get there without causing breaks, malfunctions or bugs in their system. This will be enforcing discipline on the individual who is coding because one mistake can lead to a series of chained reactions within the code and the game so maximum discipline is required when coding for a game!
Another reason why coding will be boosting your child’s discipline is the fact that coding is often not a one-man task. This also has two sides. First, let’s assume we are talking about a medium sized project. In such cases there are often more than one person doing the coding which means everybody must be on the same page and be able to follow the same workflow to avert miscommunication. This means your child is going to have to strictly follow the directions that are mutually decided and set by the entire team.
The second reason that goes under this category is the fact that people leave their jobs for many reasons mid-project. If the project at hand is going to be bullet-proof against such decisions, the programmer should code in a manner that will be easy to follow for the rest of the programming community so in case they left mid-way, the next person can smoothly follow up on their code, continue their work or debug it.
Learning to be disciplined at an early age is a crucial part of a person’s education. This is something that schools are yet to improve upon as they are more focused on theories. These are most often skills that are not as practically used in real life as they are being weighted.
4. New Community, New Friends, New Experiences
Learning new things often means joining a new community of people who have similar interests. For example,if as an adult you start taking golf lessons you are bound to make a couple of friends after just a few sessions and later on join some sort of golf club. I am pretty positive you have already had some sort of similar experience and have tasted the sweetness of such privilege. Now imagine what joining a super rare community is going to feel like! Think about joining the community of Manchester United (just because that is my favourite team) exclusive fan club! Well that is exactly how your child will be feeling with game design!
The community of game designers is one that is not only super fun, it is also very educational as well. Being part of such a rare community at a very young age is as cool as having a lightsaber (from the Star Wars movies). This is simply because being members of such communities is extremely rare even among the adults.
There are a few communities your child will be joining right after they are enrolled in our Game Design courses. The first one is, well, their class. They will join a number of other students if they are taking group sessions and immediately make a number of friends. They would have the option to join our other game design communities as well in order to get acquainted with even more people who are on the same page as they are. They will get the chance to share their projects and experiences with others, have discussions and learn from them as time goes by.
If your child is joining any of our other programs such as Scratch, Python or Java as well, which they totally should, there are corresponding communities both online and within our education system as well that they can join.
Joining a community such as Game Design, will help boost your child’s confidence and teach them the advantages of working with like-minded people. They are also most likely to try and take on the same path and go about discovering communities in their other fields of work and interests even as adults.
5. Feeling of Greatness & Achievement
The final most important benefit of attending a Game Design course for your child is the mental side of it. By designing and creating games, your children will be ahead of their friends as well as most adults in the field of gaming. Think about it, they are on top of the hierarchy, they are no longer the players but the creators.
This will firstly result in their self-esteem to sky rocket. Even at the beginning of their journey. Even when they still have not completed their first game ever. They will be seeing themselves doing what others can not. This will inject a certain feeling of superiority and greatness which can have massive impacts on their confidence.
As your child finishes designing their first game they will get to the publication stage. When they finally present their first game to their family and friends, they will be filled with a feeling of achievement. This is because at this point they have produced a very unique product all by themselves that is actually usable by others. This in turn will create a feeling of achievement.
An overall feeling of overwhelm will drive your child to strive for more success. At this point they have already realized that they achieve their desires through hard work. This is also a bonus point if they happen to be underperformers. As the guys in Geniusmath have explained in their article “Hiring A Private Math Tutor; The Good, The Bad And The Ugly”, students who perform poorly in school subjects such as math often lose their confidence. Taking a different direction such as robotics and game design in which the individual can shine bright will prove fruitful both short-term and in the long run!
Now that you are acquainted with the advantages of how beneficial Game Design courses are going to be for your children, it is now time to consider whether you want your child to dip their toes into the never ending pool of game design and experience what many children only dream of.
If you are still not sure, head over to our article “A Brief Look At Game Design” to learn more about what game design is and get a more in-depth idea about this field. This should help you with making a better choice with more awareness.
And if you have made the choice to open the doors of Game Design for your child, it is time to move forward and head over to our courses by clicking here or by navigating through our Courses section on top of this page and get them started right at the upcoming semester!