Development software group Autodesk is launching a free game development studies programme where any student with a net connection can get involved.
Those with a student email address can sign up to Autodesk’s 16-week curriculum, which offers practical training for the entire game development pipeline, from concept art to creating an engine-ready asset.
And users will be able to cut their teeth on a free six-month copy of Maya to cut their teeth, as well as a 30-day trial version of Mudbox.
An Autodesk spokesperson told Develop that any student can take part, though the firm is encouraging universities to incorporate the game design course.
Crucially, Autodesk’s 16-week programme has been designed with assistance from developers NCSoft and Double Helix.
One California-based university – Laguna College of Art & Design – is already piloting the design course for its students.
The university’s game art department chair, Sandy Appleoff, praised Autodesk for its initiative.
“Autodesk is a company that cares about the paradigm shift in the way we educate our young people, providing us with resource tools that help embrace the future of education,” she said.
“Autodesk is providing a valuable link between educators and the game industry, and helps make sure that our graduates' qualifications match industry needs.
“Having this masterful curriculum has allowed our students to move faster. By the end of the semester they will have produced game engine-ready assets and have them loaded and functioning in the game engine."