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Game programming code on a computer screen with person in the fore ground.

Game Programmer

Fuel the engine of the journey!

Programmers learn various aspects of game programming with most work done in C++.

The programmer curriculum produces T-shaped graduates - generalist programmers with specialized skills in a subject or two that they're passionate about.

Studying to become a programmer at PlaygroundSquad will teach you the ins and outs of how to make a game tick, studying a wealth of different areas such as rendering, gameplay programming, AI, networking, physics, and more. An emphasis is put on practical learning, where you work towards a given goal on your own, evaluating different approaches and being given free rein to implement your own solutions.

Elias Wickander, Game Programmer student at PSQ, 2020.

Elias Wickander, Game Programmer student | 2020

"For me, PlaygroundSquad has been the perfect place for developing as a game developer. Here, you will learn how to implement a functionality (which is often taken for granted in game engines such as Unity and Unreal Engine) from scratch, so you understand how "things work behind the scenes". You also get hands-on experience with talented people who'll be your future colleagues."

  • When is the last day to apply?
    For the 2024 years' admission process, the last day to apply is May 12, 2024.
  • Can I apply even though I haven't got my High School Degree Certificate?
    Yes you can. The applications closes on May 7th but you can add information to your application to June 12.
  • Which work samples do you want?
    Read here. The work samples can be done in English or Swedish - it's up to you to decide.
  • I don't have full grades, can I still apply?
    Yes. You can be accepted at PlaygroundSquad based on only your work samples. This means that if we see that you have big potential in the gaming industry we can ignore the fact that you don't have the grades.
  • How do I apply?
    Write to us if you don't understand or speak Swedish and want to apply. We accept international students but the application site is managed by a third party company which don't support English yet.
  • Can I visit the school before applying?
    Sure! Write to us and we'll figure something out.
  • Is there a fee for international students?
    If you're a EU resident the education wont cost you a penny. If you live outside the EU, please reach out at info@playgroundsquad.com Your right to Swedish student finance Read about your right to student finance if you want to study in Sweden as a foreign citizen: https://www.csn.se/languages/english/the-right-to-swedish-student-finance.html
  • What qualifications are needed to apply for Game Artist?
    You don't need any prior knowledge or previous experiences of working with 3D or animations to apply to PSQ Game Artist. Although, we want you to have finished High School and can show us a Graduation Certificate.
  • What qualifications are needed to apply for Game Designer?
    You don't need any prior knowledge or previous experiences to apply to PSQ Game Designer. Although, we want you to have finished High School and can show us a Graduation Certificate.
  • What qualifications are needed to apply for Game Programmer?
    Programmer applicants will need prior knowledge in a programming language such as C, C++, C#, or Java - but any programming language will also suffice, as long as you've got a logical mind. Knowledge in object-oriented programming or rendering programming is meriting. We also want you to have finished High School and show us a Graduation Certificate.
  • Can I study remotely?
    No. We do all courses on-site here in Falun.
  • Is there student accommodation?
    Yes! Read more about it here: https://www.kopparstaden.se/student/international-students
  • How long is the Internship period?
    The Internship starts in August and ends in March. The internship period takes place during your last six months of the education, which gives you very good conditions for getting a job immediately after the education. So take the chance and try to get your internship place at a studio/company where you really want to work, it could be your first job right after graduation! Read more about the Internship here: https://www.playgroundsquad.com/praktik?lang=en
  • Can I study individual courses at PSQ?
    No. We currently only offer our program educations that are two years long.
  • What qualifications are needed to apply to PSQ?
    Game Artist: You don't need any prior knowledge or previous experiences of working with 3D or animations to apply to PSQ Game Artist. Although, we want you to have finished High School and can show us a Graduation Certificate. Game Designer: You don't need any prior knowledge or previous experiences to apply to PSQ Game Designer. Although, we want you to have finished High School and can show us a Graduation Certificate. Game Programmer: Programmer applicants will need prior knowledge in a programming language such as C, C++, C#, or Java - but any programming language will also suffice, as long as you've got a logical mind. Knowledge in object-oriented programming or rendering programming is meriting. We also want you to have finished High School and show us a Graduation Certificate.
  • Can I do an internship at PlaygroundSquad?
    If you're interested in doing your internship at PlaygroundSquad, write to: Lotta@tension.se!
  • What does a game programmer do?
    As a game developer, you create all functions in games, so that characters move and which rules in physics etc. should work. If you can interact with something in a game, it is a programmer who has made that function possible.
  • How long does it take to become a game programmer?
    At PlaygroundSquad, it takes 3 years from the time you start the training until you are a finished game developer in your chosen field: Game Design, Game Artist or Game Programming.
  • What qualifications are needed to apply for Game Programmer?
    Programmer applicants will need prior knowledge in a programming language such as C, C++, C#, or Java - but any programming language will also suffice, as long as you've got a logical mind. Knowledge in object-oriented programming or rendering programming is meriting. We also want you to have finished High School and show us a Graduation Certificate.
  • Which Work Samples are needed?
    You will need prior knowledge in C, C++, Java, or C#. Knowledge of object-oriented or graphical programming is meriting. ​ Your work samples should contain source code and executable files, as well as a description of your items. The files you submit can be anything - graphical applications, small games, utilities, or scripts. ​ You may also provide any other relevant material such as applications, scripts, or mods written in other languages. Written material such as technical papers and presentations are also accepted.
  • Is it easy to get a job as a Game Programmer?
    The entire game industry in Sweden (and in the world) is currently crying out for skills and talent to hire, so there is a shortage of game developers out there in the professional world. Of course, companies don't hire just anyone. You have to show the quality that the studio or company you're applying to is looking for. So yes, it is easy to get a job in game programming - if you have the right skills.
  • What is the salary of a game programmer?
    It can vary what you get as a starting salary as a game programmer. The market salary in 2022 for developers and programmers in games and digital media in Sweden is between SEK 36,000 and 60,000 per month, according to Unionen, a Swedish labor union.
  • What does a Game Designer do?
    Game designers create the framework for the game experience and what the goals of the game are. Within Game Design, you create rules, challenges, events and everything in between that happens in the game. At PSQ game design training, you learn basic principles in game design that can be applied to any game.
  • How long does it take to become a game designer?
    At PlaygroundSquad, it takes 3 years from the time you start the training until you are a finished game developer in your chosen field: Game Design, Game Artist or Game Programming.
  • What qualifications are needed to apply for Game Designer?
    You don't need any prior knowledge or previous experiences to apply to PSQ Game Designer. Although, we want you to have finished High School and can show us a Graduation Certificate.
  • Which Work Samples are needed for Game Designer?
    There are two required tasks which you have to perform as part of your work samples: Analyze gameplay in a game. Choose a game to write about and explain how the gameplay elements affect the rest of the design such as levels, characters, and story. Create a game concept. Create your own game concept based on a specific game mechanic. In this case, there are three different ones to choose from, these are: Water physics. Create a game concept where the physics surrounding water behavior (movement, density, floating/sinking, etc) is a core mechanic. This means that it is vital for the games' core gameplay. Focus on explaining this mechanic in detail. Manipulate time. Create a game concept where the core mechanic is that the player can, in some way manipulate/control time. What you can do and how it works is up to you. However, the time manipulation/control must be a part of the games core gameplay. Focus on explaining this mechanic in detail. Rewarding exploration. Create a game concept where exploration and the system to reward players for exploration is the most vital part of the game experience. How does the game encourage exploration and reward the players for doing it? Where is the risk/reward? Focus on explaining this mechanic in detail. Optionally, you may also provide samples of your previous work such as modding, scripting, writing (short stories, character portraits, RPG-related design), and similar design documents.
  • Is it easy to get a job as a Game Designer?
    The entire game industry in Sweden (and in the world) is currently crying out for skills and talent to hire, so there is a shortage of game designers out there in the professional world. Of course, companies don't hire just anyone. You have to show the quality that the studio or company you're applying to is looking for. So yes, it is easy to get a job in game design - if you have the right skills.
  • What's the salary for a Game Designer?
    It can vary what you get as a starting salary as a game designer. The market salary in 2022 for game designers and developers in games and digital media in Sweden is between SEK 36,000 and 60,000 per month, according to Unionen, a Swedish labor union..
  • What does a Game Artist do?
    A Game Artist, 3D Artist or 3D Graphic Designer creates everything seen in the games - the graphic and artistic. It can be about characters in games or the environments or specific objects seen in the games. As a Game Creator Artist, you can choose for yourself what you want to specialize in!
  • How long does it take to become a Game Artist?
    At PlaygroundSquad, it takes 3 years from the time you start the training until you are a finished game developer in your chosen field: Game Design, Game Artist or Game Programming.
  • What qualifications are needed to apply for Game Artist?
    You don't need any prior knowledge or previous experiences of working with 3D or animations to apply to PSQ Game Artist. Although, we want you to have finished High School and can show us a Graduation Certificate.
  • Which Work Samples are needed for Game Artist?
    You will need to demonstrate any or all of the following: Skills in traditional art or media. An artistic background means that you know how to paint, sculpt, or design and have an understanding of perspective, value, form, function, color, lighting, composition, etc. ​ Technical knowledge in graphics-related software. This might manifest itself as a thorough understanding of a 3D application such as Maya, 3D Studio Max or Blender. Prior experience scripting or modding games and 3D software is also meriting. Please take pictures or scan your work if you have analogue work samples like sculptures, photos, or paintings.
  • Is it easy to get a job as a Game Artist?
    The entire game industry in Sweden (and in the world) is currently crying out for skills and talent to hire, so there is a shortage of game artists out there in the professional world. Of course, companies don't hire just anyone. You have to show the quality that the studio or company you're applying to is looking for. So yes, it is easy to get a job as a game artist - if you have the right skills.
  • What's the salary for a Game Artist?
    It can vary what you get as a starting salary when you start working as a 3D Artist in the game industry. The average salary for a 3D graphic artists in Sweden is SEK 38,600 per month according to the 2023 salary statistics, according to the Swedish website Yrkeskollen.se.
  • When is the last day to apply?
    For the 2024 years' admission process, the last day to apply is May 12, 2024.
  • Can I apply even though I haven't got my High School Degree Certificate?
    Yes you can. The applications closes on May 7th but you can add information to your application to June 12.
  • Is there student accommodation?
    Yes! Read more about it here: https://www.kopparstaden.se/student/international-students
  • What qualifications are needed to apply to PSQ?
    Game Artist: You don't need any prior knowledge or previous experiences of working with 3D or animations to apply to PSQ Game Artist. Although, we want you to have finished High School and can show us a Graduation Certificate. Game Designer: You don't need any prior knowledge or previous experiences to apply to PSQ Game Designer. Although, we want you to have finished High School and can show us a Graduation Certificate. Game Programmer: Programmer applicants will need prior knowledge in a programming language such as C, C++, C#, or Java - but any programming language will also suffice, as long as you've got a logical mind. Knowledge in object-oriented programming or rendering programming is meriting. We also want you to have finished High School and show us a Graduation Certificate.
  • Is there a fee for international students?
    If you're a EU resident the education wont cost you a penny. If you live outside the EU, please reach out at info@playgroundsquad.com Your right to Swedish student finance Read about your right to student finance if you want to study in Sweden as a foreign citizen: https://www.csn.se/languages/english/the-right-to-swedish-student-finance.html
  • Can I study remotely?
    No. We do all courses on-site here in Falun.
  • Can I do internship at PlaygroundSquad?
    If you're interested in doing your internship at PlaygroundSquad, write to Lotta@tension.se!
Animated picture from a PSQ Game Project.

Curriculum

what is a game programmer?

The programmer curriculum starts off with a brief mathematics course to lay a solid foundation for what is to come - a plethora of game development courses.

 

Programmers study three game-programming courses and three game projects during their education. Each course gradually builds your skill as a professional game programmer, and a game project follows each course to let you apply your newly acquired skills.

Projects

During a game project at PlaygroundSquad, programmers are ultimately responsible for implementing the game itself. There are usually two or three programmers in a project group, and they collaborate both amongst themselves and with other disciplines to reach this goal.

Programmers usually work with our in-house 3D middleware TenGine, but they are free to use any engine they see fit. Building on a barebones framework, they implement the game from scratch and are able to apply and re-use their work in future game projects.

Animated picture from a PSQ Game Project, Dragonic Rampage.
PlayStation controller with blue lights on a table.

PlayStation First

As PlaygroundSquad is part of PlayStation First, programmers are also able to work on PlayStation hardware to give them an extra edge when starting their internship at a real company.

Career

After graduating as a programmer you are able to work as a programming generalist at both large and small studios alike. More specialized roles may also be available later in your career, or for those that have chosen to specialize during their education - it's all up to the student. Most graduates will begin an entry-level position such as gameplay or generalist programmer.

Animated picture of a cottage in nighttime by PSQ student, Kim Eklund

COURSES

With a focus on practical learning, the programming courses at PlaygroundSquad are carefully constructed to get you into a real production as soon as possible.

Course Overview

  • New, fresh info will appear here ASAP!

Kurser
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