CS 4154—Analytics-Driven Game Design

General Information

A game design class based around collecting data from actual players on the Internet and refining your game using that feedback. In particular, you deploy to game portals like Kongregate and Newgrounds.

Also see: CS3152, CS4152, CS 6360—Educational Technology.


Prerequisites for programmers: CS 2110 (or permission of the instructor).

Prerequisites for designers: Submission of art/design portfolio to instructor.

Topics Covered

  • Prototyping
  • Users don’t care about what your game is trying to tell them
  • Progressions
  • Incentivizing Players
  • Telemetry & Data Visualization
  • A/B testing


This is not a 3-credit class by any means. Depending on how well your team splits the workload, you might spend 8-20 hours a week.

Unlike the other game design classes, where there is a lot of accounting of individual work, CS 4154 only does periodic peer evaluations.

General Advice

Have a good team, and keep the scope of your project as small as possible. Don’t get taken in by 3D (even if Unity makes it seem easy), and try to have a simple, interesting core mechanic. You have to deploy only halfway through the class!


Past Offerings

Semester Time Professor Median Grade Course Page
Fall 2017 MWF 10:10-11:00 Erik Andersen ? http://www.cs.cornell.edu/courses/cs4154/2017fa/

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