SHE Level 4
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code MHW222992
Module Leader Simon Haslett
School School of Computing, Engineering and Built Environment
Subject Applied Computer Games
  • A (September start)

Pre-Requisite Knowledge

Advanced 3D modelling and digitally sculpting or equivalent and a good understanding of the skills and techniques used in lighting, texturing and rendering processes.

Summary of Content

This module enables students to specialise in a selected area of personal interest within the field of 3D Visualisation and Animation. Students will use a range of industry standard software and pipelines to apply advanced rendering and animation techniques and animation techniques in order to build on the 3D modelling and animation skills previously gained within the programme. Students will explore emerging technologies and processes in advanced 3D modelling rendering and digital compositing and will have the opportunity to explore real time rendering technology. Students will be expected to investigate the different requirements and skills for key sectors within the 3D computer animation industries such as Architectural Visualisation, Computer Game Production and Visual Effects.


The syllabus will cover the following areas: Pre-production planning and pre-visualisation techniques. Creation of materials and textures with respect to colour, specular highlights, transparency, luminosity, bump texture and other mapping techniques. HDR image based lighting techniques. Real time rendering technologies. Normal mapping techniques for simulating detail. Ambient Occlusion shader techniques. Texture baking for lighting and shadow. Global Illumination and Radiosity techniques. Particle systems and creating visual effects Advanced modelling techniques Multi-pass rendering for visual effects compositing. Optimisation of models for real time rendering.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:1.Research, investigate and apply advanced rendering techniques with respect to textures, materials, lighting and rendering.2. Demonstrate an understanding of current advanced lighting and rendering techniques including image based lighting and photorealistic render production using current typical industry standard rendering engines.3. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of Direct3D material shaders and rendering techniques for developing real time rendering solutions.4. Critically analyse current developments in 3D rendering technology and the application of these technologies within specific industry sectors, for example, Computer Games, Architectural Visualisation and Visual Effects.

Teaching / Learning Strategy

The University 'Strategy for Learning' documentation has informed the learning and teaching strategy for this module. The course will be presented as a programme of lectures supported by tutorials and associated practical lab work. Students are directed to planning skills throughout the course, further enhance their creative and technical skills through practise and improve communication skills through oral presentations, group based discussions and critique sessions. Tutorials and laboratory exercises will help students develop their technical skills using industry standard tools and improve techniques through practise. Will further explain, elaborate and put in to practise certain concepts covered in the lecture material. Lectures, lab exercises and video tutorials will be made available for the students on GCU Learn. Additional online digital video material will enhance support via GCU Learn and encourage flexible student learning and encourage students to engage with alternative digital resources. Student will receive formative feedback throughout the programme, further feedback and grades will be provided for the coursework assignment undertaken as part of the module.

Indicative Reading

Williams, R (2001) The Animator's Survival Kit Faber & Faber ISBN 0-571-20228-4 Cardoso, J. (2013). Crafting 3D photorealism. United Kingdom: 3dtotal Publishing. ISBN 0956817157 Stenning, J. (n.d.). Direct3D Rendering Cookbook. Packt Publishing. ISBN 1849697108 Biver, S., Fuqua, P. and Hunter, F. (2012). Light Science and Magic. Hoboken: Taylor and Francis Akenine-Mf6ller, T., Haines, E. and Hoffman, N. (2010). Real-time rendering. Wellesley, MA: Peters, ISBN 1568814240 Cardoso, J., (2011) 3D Realism Practical & Easy Workflows, CreateSpace. ISBN 1467962090

Transferrable Skills

Specialist knowledge and application Critical thinking and problem solving Critical analysis Communication skills, written, oral and listening Effective information retrieval and research skills Computer literacy Self confidence, self discipline & self reliance (independent working) Creativity, innovation & independent thinking Ability to prioritise tasks and time management Presentation skills

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Lectures (FT) 12.00
Assessment (FT) 20.00
Independent Learning (FT) 120.00
Practicals (FT) 48.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Coursework 1 n/a 100.00 n/a Final Project Submission