GAME PRODUCTION | A live online course with senior producer | ELVTR
live online course

GAME PRODUCTION

A LIVE ONLINE COURSE
ON BUILDING SUCCESS
IN GAMES & CAREER
Dates:
11 JAN - 18 FEB 2022
Duration:
6 WEEKS
TUESDAYS & FRIDAYS
6:30 PM PST / 9:30 PM EST

Learn how to launch hit games, with the AAA game producer behind titles from Sega classics through to today.

Craft a clear project roadmap, plan out a mock release, and get ready to start going after the gaming career you really want.

YOUR ASCENT STARTS HERE

Get exclusive access to the biggest names in gaming.

Answer your toughest production questions in live sessions with Andy and special guest speakers from THQ and Perfect Day Productions. You’ll walk away from each class with insights into the thought process of top game producers and build meaningful industry connections.

Access the tools, strategies, and workflows used inside the world's top studios.

You'll learn what it takes to bring killer games to market in today's gaming environment, from scoping the project to reacting to new technologies. Step inside Andy's personal studio to break down roadmaps, Agile, risk assessment, and more.

 
ABOUT THE COURSE
01
SKILLS
Master production at every stage. Andy will break down each piece of the pipeline in clear terms: who does what, what happens and when, and the common mistakes first-time producers make.
02
PORTFOLIO
Hit the ground running with your own mock project. Jump straight into the production experience by leading your own mock game release, starting from assembling a team and ending with creating a post-release plan.
03
GROWTH
Get feedback on assignments from an industry pro. Andy will give you input on your work based on his experience leading dozens of successful releases from major studios like Sega, Eidos, and THQ.
04
NETWORK

Build valuable relationships in the industry beyond the course. You'll become a member of the Core Alumnus community and expand your network. It's not unusual for gaming veterans to have more than 50% of all jobs in their career come from direct referrals within their network!

Instructor
ANDY
JOHNSON
LinkedIn Profile
  • Senior Producer for projects by the PokĂ©mon Company Intl. and Principal Program Manager for Minecraft, the cultural phenomenon with 140 million active players
  • Boasts 30 years in game development at AAA studios, among them Sega, PokĂ©mon, Eidos, THQ, and currently Digital Extremes
  • Has led dozens of popular releases on nearly every platform since the golden age of video games, from the 16-bit Sega Genesis to PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC & macOS, iOS, and Android
  • Brings the best of Agile to game development and localization for best-selling titles like Injustice: The Gods Among Us, The Banner Saga, and Disney Pixar Cars, which sold 8 million copies in its first year
  • Proud owner of an original Sonic the Hedgehog x Michael Jackson jacket twin
Andy Johnson
ANDY JOHNSON
COURSE INTRODUCTION
SYLLABUS
01
TUE (1/11) at 6:30 PST/9:30 PM EST
What is a Game Producer?

This course kicks off with an overview of what game production looks like today. You’ll go past the hype to look at how the role has evolved, the soft and hard skills needed, and what these mean when mapped against producer job descriptions.

  • Game production tracks
  • The game producer role: Differences by companies

Assignment #1: What kind of producer are you?

02
FRI (1/14) at 6:30 PST/9:30 PM EST
Designing a Development Team

Production isn’t a one-player game. In this class, you’ll learn the architecture of a development team. Then, Andy will map out what goes into creating a game proposal that studios can’t wait to develop.

  • Team composition
  • Touch-points at each development stage
  • Working with a development team

Assignment #2: Create team plan for a game proposal

03
TUE (1/18) at 6:30 PST/9:30 PM EST
How to Build a Project Roadmap

Mapping your course well is an essential part of the game producer’s role. In this class, you'll investigate how to build a roadmap to hit your release date.

  • What is a project roadmap
  • Gathering project requirements
  • Assessing needs and timelines
04
FRI (1/21) at 6:30 PST/9:30 PM EST
Keeping a Project on Track

Will your game idea be a hit? A lot of that depends on how well you keep it on track. You'll learn about what should go into your budget, how to manage adaptive challenges and schedule requirements, and when to iterate.

  • Budget and the cost of game development
  • Developing against a roadmap in a Scrum environment
  • Balancing iteration against schedule and budget

Assignment #3: Build a project roadmap for your game

05
FRI (1/28) at 6:30 PST/9:30 PM EST
Fireside Chat with Ken George, Business Developer at THQ Nordic GmbH

Today, you'll hear from another seasoned game producer on the defining moments in his career and how you can clarify your own path. Ken earned his chops at Sony and Atari before moving on to executive production roles at Rainbow and THQ for the past 20 years.

About the Speaker

  • Business Development Manager at THQ Nordic
  • Executive Producer of Disney Pixar’s Cars game, managing internal and external development for 12 platforms, 17 languages and 135 SKUs
  • Resurrected Rainbow Studios and the MX vs ATV franchise with THQ Nordic
  • Started his video game career in 1989 as a game tester, then moved to video game production
  • Produced games at Sony’s 989 Studios during the launch and early years of the PlayStation
  • Serves as President of the Arizona Film and Digital Media Coalition, a non-profit film and video game advocacy group
06
TUE (1/25) at 6:30 PST/9:30 PM EST
Fireside Chat with Josh Ayala, CEO at Perfect Day Productions

Josh began his career in music, providing technology and event production for the GRAMMYs, before eventually moving to gaming with a focus on mobile games. You'll hear from him live on potential routes into the field and some of the challenges he's faced in his roles over the years.

About the Speaker

  • CEO at Perfect Day Productions
  • Focus on new media and software production
  • Managed technology and event production for the Recording Academy (GRAMMYs)
  • Produced live games including Battle Nations and Paradise Bay as Executive Producer at Z2/King
  • Founding member and board president of Seattle-based not-for-profits The Vera Project and The Service Board

Assignment #4: Outline 1 point from each Fireside Chat that were discussed this week with Josh Ayala and Ken George, and how it’s going to impact your decision making and/or thought process.

07
TUE (2/1) at 6:30 PST/9:30 PM EST
An Overview of Agile & Scrum

This week, you'll get up close and personal with Agile and Scrum development. In the first lesson of our two-part class, Andy will map out the core elements of Agile game development.

  • Scrum distilled
  • The essence of Agile development
  • Why Agile and Scrum for gaming?
08
FRI (2/4) at 6:30 PST/9:30 PM EST
Real-world Scrum Implementation

You’ll uncover real-world secrets of Agile and Scrum usage, and understand what’s useful and what isn’t in current game development.

  • Scrum: What to keep and what to ditch
  • Scrum in real-world development
  • What is Scrum-but?

Assignment #5: Build out backlog items for your project

09
TUE (2/8) at 6:30 PST/9:30 PM EST
Uncovering Project Risk

Gaming is a business and, like any other, it comes with risk. This class is about the common risks and red flags to look out for in your planning. You'll get a pragmatic framework for identifying them.

  • Most common areas of risk
  • Understanding the Cone of Uncertainty
  • Requirements gathering
10
FRI (2/11) at 6:30 PST/9:30 PM EST
Assessing and Mitigating Risk

When curve balls hit your project, how can you pivot a team to stay on track? In this class, you'll learn how to assess and mitigate risk throughout a project.

  • Risk assessment
  • Pivoting your team
  • What is mitigation planning?

Assignment #6: Secret assignment

11
TUE (2/15) at 6:30 PST/9:30 PM EST
Data and Reporting

Throughout your project, you’ll need to consume and translate data from multiple sources to keep your project on track — enter Data and Reporting! This class teaches you how to consume data and translate that into actionable next steps. You'll also learn about setting KPIs, knowing when to pivot, and how to relay your findings to the top decision makers.

  • Tips for quickly digesting information
  • How to understand the state of the game
  • Reporting project status
  • Understanding the need for KPIs
12
FRI (2/18) at 6:30 PST/9:30 PM EST
Getting Your Team Through Crunch

This class is all about getting through to the finish line. Andy will share from his experiences working with QA and external groups and avoiding "crunch and burnout".

  • Managing communication channels
  • Working with external launch teams
  • Sustainable QA and the importance of bug triage
  • The real reasons behind "crunch and burnout"

Assignment #7: Create materials for your project release and a post-release plan.

What our students say

Jesse McKeil Turn Me Up Games

"Andy is giving much more than technical know-how. The inside look into the games industry and how to navigate it is very insightful."

Eduardo Emmerich iFood

"I took part in Andy's Game Production class on July/21 as a way to pivot my career from product management toward game development. The course surpassed my expectations and provided me with many insights and tools in order to continue building my career to become a producer in the games industry. He is a very thoughtful and dedicated teacher, and spared no efforts to share as much knowledge and past experiences as possible with the students in the class."

Joel Villegas Level Ex Inc.

"We are learning more in depth about game production and I love the use of real world examples in our assignments."

Erik Lunde Spark Foundry

"This class facilitates a generous amount of conversations with classmates via the Discord channel, which is a fantastic educational resource. I found that I could discuss the interesting concepts we are learning in class with my classmates and learn from their experience and professional advice. Andy, the instructor, was at the core of it all, facilitating meaningful discussion and responding to each student to help guide them through the process of game production."

Dylan Souksombath Clipwire Games

"Live Q&A with professor and industry guests + personalized and relevant feedback"

Tanner Ottoson

"I really like how passionate Andy is about game producing and the way he teaches, I can tell he really cares and it makes it an overall great experience"

 
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