Associate of Fine Arts (AFA) Game Design

Overview of the Game Design AFA

The Academy makes the accelerated 16-month schedule possible by creating an extended academic year, allowing students to complete three full-length semesters in each calendar year.

New York Film Academy’s AFA in Game Design program is offered at our Los Angeles Campus.

Qualified students have the option of completing course work at the New York Film Academy in New York City in a one-year non-degree program and then applying their course work to be accepted for advanced standing in the AFA Game Design degree program.

NYFA Student Game Design Highlight Reel

A reel of student work from New York Film Academy's Game Design Department in both LA and NYC.

Candidates earning the AFA Degree in Game Design at NYFA gain exposure to the fundamentals of game design and development in four semesters.

Students who want to focus on their professional goals as game designers can earn an Associate of Fine Arts (AFA) degree in Game Design at the New York Film Academy. In this 16-month, four-semester program, candidates get a full complement of game design and development training that includes exposure to Playcentric Design™, Agile development, programming for non-programmers, and storytelling studies. Just as important, the program incorporates NYFA’s Game Studio course each semester wherein students lead their own digital game studio with classmates and create a functioning digital game. Game Studio includes one-to-one mentorship from faculty, industry advisors, and a professional programmer who works with each student team.

The program’s strength is in the intensity of hands-on workshops as well as its focus on game narrative and game analysis. These skills are vital for success in the game design industry. Students collaborate with leading game development companies from the industry and the world of independent games, providing direct experience with working professionals and leaders. Internships and externships are formal components of the program.

Programming experience is helpful but not a prerequisite for entrance into the Associate’s Degree in Game Design. Familiarity with programming will smooth the path for a student seeking to build sophisticated games in the NYFA Game Studio class each semester, and will boost the students’ job-hire potential in industry.


Over the two years of the AFA game design program, students work through a studio-based design and development program at NYFA’s Game Design School that explores the craft of games. The strict regimen is comprised of workshops, classes, lectures, seminars, and hands-on studio work.In year one, instruction focuses on fundamentals of playable system design, analysis of games, programming for non-programmers, and story. Weekly guest lectures provide insight on where the industry is today and where it will be in the future. At the completion of the first year, AFA students achieve the following:
  • Paper prototype game portfolio.
  • Digital art portfolio.
  • Game narrative story and character portfolio.
  • Game programming primer.
  • Two functioning digital games suitable for the student’s online portfolio. These games will be created in collaboration with classmates and mentors.
  • Exposure to Agile development methodology and professional tools.

Read more
$35,454 Per Year

International student tuition fee

2 Years


Aug 2024

Start Month

Jul 2024

Application Deadline

Upcoming Intakes

  • August 2024
  • January 2025
  • August 2025

Mode of Study

  • Full Time