term: spring | date: 3rd May, 2021

You are invited to the FREE USC Games Expo 2021!

The event is FREE and streaming online; RSVPing allows us to provide you with updates, adds you to our mailing list (we don’t spam!) and enters you into winning prizes/giveaways during the stream itself!

USC Games, North America’s No. 1 game design program for eleven years according to the Princeton Review, is collaborating with long-term partner, Jam City—to feature the game designers and developers of tomorrow at their annual USC Games Expo. Building on last year’s highly successfully livestreamed event, the show will premiere on May 15th, 2021 at 12PM PST, with a “Jr. High/High School Student Sneak Peek” the day prior on May 14th, 2021 at 10AM PST. The show will feature over 60 games made entirely via distributed development by students and teams spread around the globe.

Virtually all of the games shown will be downloadable and all streaming content can be viewed at www.uscgamesexpo.com.

This is the fifth Expo for the program—a joint initiative between the Viterbi School of Engineering and the USC School of Cinematic Arts—continuing their legacy of making it the largest University-sponsored gaming and esports event in the world. As it has historically, the Expo will also feature the first hands-on for the 10 projects being developed in its capstone course, the Advanced Games Program (AGP).


Last Week

ITP 499 Video Game Production (32078R) with Kyle Ackerman

​An introductory course ideal for students with no previous game development experience, this course helps students develop their interest in interactive entertainment, explore the common roles and tools involved in the business and creation of games, and identify the hallmarks of successful productions. If you are interested in exploring game production, this course is a first step down the road that can lead to developing those skills in CTIN 409, and ultimately participating in a successful Advanced Games Project team at USC Games.

CTAN 466 Projection Mapping Design & Production with Jordan Halsey

Learn techniques for projecting on 2d or 3d surfaces, on opbjects or in a location. We will also explore how to render in real-time with Unreal Engine. Touchdesigner projection software is supplied free for students. Prtable HD projectors used in class can be checked out by students.

Please email instructor with any questions: Jordan Halsey (jhalsey@usc.edu)

Vote for Octobo for The Webby People’s Voice Awards. We are excited to announce that Octobo, the Tech Toy that Teaches has been nominated for a Webby award! Octobo has been singled out as one of the five Best Apps and Software: Integrated Mobile Experience in the 25th Annual Webby Awards.

You can show your support for Octobo and our USC alum by voting HERE.

The WORLD AT PLAY Summer School is a part of VOLUPTAS research project into the intersection between game design, architecture and ludic pedagogy.


This summer school proposes the makings of a new cosmogony: the creation of a playable world in one week. Then we rest.

A limited number of students from different backgrounds (architecture, game design, programming, art, philosophy) will come together to build the genesis of a playable digital world. The elemental ingredients of this world will be provided by the architecture projects produced by the Voluptas design studio: their spaces, mechanics, images and desires.

For one week, the team will evolve towards the common goal by drawing from their specific strengths and individual learning backgrounds, tutored by Pippin Barr, Andri Gerber and Francisco Moura Veiga.
Starting with a first day of theoretical input by the Voluptas chair, Tracy Fullerton, Bob Sumner, Emily Short, and Stefano Gualeni, students will gain an overview of the week‘s processes and the end goal. the week will continue with a series of daily exercises and discussions with the tutors feeding into the creation of the world. On the last day, the playable world will be presented to a group of architects, game designers, and artists.

Send your applications (a short portfolio and letter of motivation of maximum 4 MB) to Francisco Moura Veiga at veiga@arch.ethz.ch.


Voluptas is the euphoric daughter of its time—the intoxicating offspring of measure and spirit. Amending the millenary Vitruvian ordinances of firmitas, utilitas and venustas, Voluptas initiates a transversal investigation on contemporary issues and sets combinatory dynamics as the channel of proliferating singularities. Its looping trajectory toward a saturation of problem settings aims at the empirical emanation of an alternative view of the urban condition. Enforcing desire as its prevalent agent, Voluptas is the elegiac display of residual energy.

It is the Charbonnet/Heiz design chair at the D-ARCH of the ETH Zurich.

Are you a member of the USC Games family with big news or events to share? Let us know at uscgsoc@usc.edu, our Social Media Support center, or fill out THIS FORM!

Tuesday, May 4th, 9:00AM – 11:00AM

May the 4th Be With You!

You are invited to a special live-stream talk about the visual effects of Star Wars, including The Rise of SkywalkerThe Mandalorian and much more!

ILM Compositor Charmaine Chan and ILM Art Director Amy Beth Christenson Smith will present a talk that will be live-streamed at 12:00PM EST/9:00 AM PST on May the 4th.

The ILM Recruitment team will also be answering questions from students. You may submit your questions here and register here.

Saturday, May 8th, 12:00PM – 5:00PM
United We Game is a charity gaming stream-a-thon to help alleviate the financial burden of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Greater Los Angeles Community. USC Trojan Esports has partnered with the United Way, Corsair, Electronic Arts, and the Immortals Gaming Club to bring you an afternoon of Minecraft, Gaming Trivia, and a Pokémon Spelling Bee. Proceeds will be donated to United Way of Greater Los Angeles.

We have thousands of dollars worth of prizes to giveaway and the more donations received, the more we’ll giveaway!

Want to be featured and play Minecraft? Sign up HERE.

The fun kicks off on Saturday, May 8 at 12 PM PDT. The event will be streamed at USC Trojan Esports’ Twitch.

Wednesday, May 5th, 7:00PM – 9:00PM

Game Tasting is a weekly event featuring curated tabletop games (in Tabletop Simulator) with USC Games students and faculty. Come, have fun, and learn a new tabletop game every week!

This week we’ll be playing Cascadia, a tile-laying puzzle game about setting up a delicately balanced ecosystem in the Pacific Northwest. By drafting and placing resources into your ever-expanding map of wildlife habitats, you can try to find an optimal configuration for each of the five animal species – the scoring conditions for each of which are randomized at the start of the game. This is another crowdfunded game fresh off a successful Kickstarter campaign. Join us on Wednesday at 7:00 PM PDT for some puzzley naturalism with 2021’s Cascadia.

*Students & Faculty, look out for more information in our USC Games Weekly Access Guide.