Profiles of Game Animation Programs & Schools

Our 2014 rankings of the top programs on the East Coast for game design and development.

We define the East Coast as Virginia, Rhode Island, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New York, Delaware, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine. 

For an explanation of ranking criteria, click here.

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Our 2014 list of the Top 75 Game Design/Development School Programs in the US. For an explanation of ranking criteria, click here.

1. University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California
The University of Southern California (USC) is home to USC Games. Created by the School of Cinematic Arts’ (SCA) Interactive Media & Games Division in collaboration with the Viterbi School of Engineering’s Department of Computer Science, USC Games offers several renowned graduate level game design programs and several undergraduate programs. Options include an MFA in Interactive Media, an MS in Computer Science with a Specialization in Game Development, a BA in Interactive Entertainment, and a BS in Computer Science (Games).

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Our 2014 rankings of the Top 20 schools on the West Coast for game design and development. 

We define the West Coast as California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Hawaii, and Idaho. 

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Our 2014 rankings of the Top 15 game design and development programs in the Midwest.

We define the Midwest as Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota, and North Dakota.

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Our 2014 rankings of the Top 15 schools for game design and development in the Southwest US. 

We define the Southwest as Texas, Oklahoma, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, and Nevada.

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Our 2014 rankings of the top game design and development schools in the South. 

We define the South as Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Louisiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, Kentucky, West Virginia, Tennessee, Mississippi, Arkansas.

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As the entertainment industries bring in billions of dollars each year, the list of software that artists have to learn keeps growing longer. Needing the newest versions for each program every year can often prove to be quite costly. Wouldn’t it be great if there was a major 3D animation toolkit that was completely open source and free to use even for commercial projects? As many of you already know, that’s exactly what Blender has been doing for years, and each year it further closes the gap between itself and the most expensive software that money can buy.

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Riot Games League of Legends Interview on Champion Animation Process

Rory “RiotLamz” Alderton is a Senior Animator for the League of Legends game developer, Riot Games. After almost six years of working at Jagex Games Studio he joined Riot in April of 2013 as an Animator, and was then promoted to Senior Animator in May of last year. He’s one of the people responsible for making the iconic battle moves for the many playable Champions in their famous MOBA game, which is played by over 27 million gamers from around the world every single day.

We recently ranked Riot Games in fourth place in our 2014 Top 100 Most Influential Video Game Studios list, and last year their Season 4 World Championship reached a prize pool of $2,130,000! To help readers get to know Riot Games better we talked with Rory Alderton about his work at the studio.

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The casual games market is booming! Jobs, particularly for 2D artists, are on the rise as the social and mobile game markets expand. While studios may seem to have a laundry list of requirements for potential art candidates, it isn’t too difficult to make an excellent impression on a prospective employer with these basic guidelines. Some of my points may seem simple or obvious, but having them covered will definitely give you a leg up on the competition.

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2K Sports

I interviewed Jerson Sapida a producer at 2K Sports who has been working on the NBA 2K series since its early years on Xbox and PS2. I asked him his thoughts on making it as a producer for a sports development studio and his career experiences.

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