Hasso-Plattner-Institut25 Jahre HPI
Hasso-Plattner-Institut25 Jahre HPI

Rapid Prototyping for Educational Games (Sommersemester 2024)

Lecturer: Prof. Dr. Robert Hirschfeld (Software-Architekturen) , Eva Krebs (Software-Architekturen)

General Information

  • Weekly Hours: 4
  • Credits: 6
  • Graded: yes
  • Enrolment Deadline: 01.04.2024 - 30.04.2024
  • Teaching Form: Lecture
  • Enrolment Type: Compulsory Elective Module
  • Course Language: English
  • Maximum number of participants: 15

Programs, Module Groups & Modules

IT-Systems Engineering MA
Data Engineering MA
Software Systems Engineering MA
  • SSYS: Software Systems
    • HPI-SSYS-C Concepts and Methods
  • SSYS: Software Systems
    • HPI-SSYS-T Technologies and Tools
  • SSYS: Software Systems
    • HPI-SSYS-S Specialization


Trying out ideas via fast prototyping is not only an essential part of agile software development, but especially important game development. The experience of playing a game is very subjective, which makes it tricky to get right, and can only really be assessed by evaluating how people actually play the game. Thus being able to quickly implement and playtest ideas via prototypes is essential for game development.

Games themselves have many possible applications. While the biggest is currently the entertainment industry, the factors that make games good entertainment (such as keeping players engaged and motivated) can also benefit other domains. For instance, educational games aim to combine practical and motivating game elements with educational content.

In this course, students will be introduced to

  • theory behind video games, game development, and game elements
  • (game) prototyping techniques and tools
  • educational games, serious games, and gamification


Several prototyping tools will be introduced during the course of the lecture, including the open-source Game-Engine Godot and «Pronto», a Godot-based framework for fast prototyping.
Previous knowledge in game development is beneficial, but not required. However, basic programming skills are required (e.g. as acquired in "Introduction to Programming" (PT) 1 and 2 at HPI).

All code that might be created during the course of the lecture must be able to be published with an MIT license.


Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Jesse Schell (ISBN 978-1466598645)


Lecture with exercises/seminar

Hand-ins etc per Moodle


During the lecture period, participants will solve exercises which includes the creation and evaluation of their own prototypes. Findings from these exercises will be collected in a "Learning Journal".
At the end of the lecture period, a written exam will be held.

The final grade is the better of the following two options:

  • 100% written exam grade
  • 50% written exam grade and 50% "Learning Journal"-grade


Regular lecture slot

  • Tuesday, 15:15 to 16:45, in room A2.1
  • (The room could change if in agreement with all participants)
  • The Thursday slot (13:30-15:00) is an additional slot for tutorials and office hours

First lecture aka first week

  • 9. April Tuesday 15:15 in A2.1
  • There will be no lecture/tutorial on 11. April
  • You can take a look at the first lecture per Zoom, but the course is optimized for and will be held in-person

(Zoom-link: https://uni-potsdam.zoom-x.de/j/65652217874
Meeting-ID: 656 5221 7874
Kenncode: 83912551)

Exam date

  • TBA
  • You can resign from the course until 8 days before the exam