The NYU Game Center, an independent multi-school center at New York University dedicated to the research, design, and development of digital games, has announced the appointment of renowned game designer and scholar Eric Zimmerman as visiting assistant arts professor.
Zimmerman has been working in the game industry for more than 16 years, creating award-winning games both on and of the computer. He is the co-author of Rules of Play (MIT Press, 2004) with Katie Salen, the definitive textbook in the field of game design and has been teaching game design since 1995. Zimmerman will teach Introduction to Game Design and Advanced Game Design.
Over the last year, Zimmerman has been teaching and helping to create a curriculum at the Game Center on a part-time basis. “His addition on a full-time basis is an indication of the Game Center’s commitment to bringing together the most important and influential scholars and designers in the field in order to build a world-class program in game design,” said NYU Game Center Interim Chair Frank Lantz.
Zimmerman’s career highlights include Gamelab, a NYC-based game development studio he ran for nine years. Co-founded with Peter Lee, Gamelab created innovative games including the blockbuster hit Diner Dash. Gamelab spun off two successful companies: Gamestar Mechanic, an online site funded by the MacArthur Foundation that lets kids create games; and the Institute of Play, a nonprofit initiative that looks at the intersection of games and learning and which recently launched Quest to Learn, a New York City school using play as the model for learning. Prior to Gamelab, his game design work included the critically acclaimed SiSSYFiGHT 2000 and the PC title Gearheads.
His recent awards include: the selection of Sixteen Tons, a physical game created with architect Nathalie Pozzi, as a finalist in the October 2010 Indiecade game festival; Cross My Heart + Hope to Die, also in collaboration with Pozzi, received the coveted Jury Award at the 2010 Come Out & Play festival of street games. Zimmerman’s recent film PLAY, created with director David Kaplan, premiered at the Puchon International Film Festival this summer where it received the top award for Best Short Film. He publishes and lectures extensively about game design and game culture.
Zimmerman holds a BFA in Painting from the University of Pennsylvania and an MFA in Art & Technology from The Advanced Computing Center for the Arts & Design at The Ohio State University.
The NYU Game Center is housed in the Skirball Center for New Media at the Tisch School of the Arts and is an all NYU collaboration of the Tisch School, Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development, and Polytechnic Institute of NYU. The Center is supported by generous grants from an anonymous donor, the Rockefeller Foundation, and Sharon Chang and the TTSL Charitable Foundation. For additional information, visit http://gamecenter.nyu.edu.