Game Center heads to Brooklyn, finds new home at MAGNET CenterPosted on September 5, 2013 | by Kevin Burns
Just last semester the NYU Games Library, the centerpiece of the NYU Game Center, squeezed a collection of consoles, gaming PCs and games into what now looks like a small lobby in the basement of the Tisch building at 721 Broadway.
The Game Center was established in 2008 as a part of the Tisch School of the Arts, with the purpose of studying game production and design. This semester however, the Game Center is branching out to Brooklyn and taking the bulk of its library with it.
The primary reason the center is moving is space, said Game Center instructor Charles Pratt.
“The two classrooms we had at Tisch and the one or two offices just weren’t going to work for much longer,” Pratt said. “In Brooklyn we have a huge floor with lots of classrooms, offices and most importantly, open space where our students can work and socialize when they aren’t in class.”
The Game Center is welcoming its second class of graduate students in its Master of Fine Arts program. With the second class, the center will have 50 full-time students, on top of the undergraduates earning minors.
“721 Broadway always treated us very well, but we were also usually squeezed between other departments that had bigger footprints,” Pratt said. “Now we have a lot more elbow room and we don’t have to break down everything we build every night just to make sure it isn’t in someone’s way.”
The Games Library will still be open to any NYU student and will feature 3-D gaming modules called Oculus Rifts. A smaller library will be maintained at the old library’s location.
Caroline Liddick, a CAS senior pursuing a game design minor, is excited for the new space and said she is looking forward to the potential for more exhibits and tournaments.
“It’s nice to have something there to just go to when you have that awkward hour break in between classes,” Liddick said.
James Phillips is also a CAS senior with a minor in game design. He is taking Vlaada Chvatil and the Modern Strategic Board Game with instructor Jesse Fuchs, at the new Brooklyn space. Phillips is happy the Game Center moved but noted the inconvenience of the new location.
“Having this extra room is really going to let them do some cool stuff and make games classes way more accessible, even if it is a bit out of the way,” Phillips said.
Phillips said the old class space was too limiting for the Game Center to develop.
Pratt said the continuing goal of the center is to grow while maintaining quality, and said it is attempting to expand their undergraduate program.
“We’re also in the process of getting an undergraduate program approved and depending on when that happens we could be welcoming our first class in a year or two,” Pratt said.