A genetic algorithm-based design space exploration technique using parameterised cores is examined. A computer-aided design tool called SCBuild was developed which is capable of applying a genetic algorithm to a core's parameters, and generating hardware description language models of core variants. The tool can also compute estimates of a variant's area and critical path delay on a field-programmable gate array. Using this tool, several experiments were conducted using a soft-core processor with a large design space. It was concluded from these experiments that using a genetic algorithm to explore the design space of a parameterised core can help a designer make intelligent decisions regarding the assignment of values to the parameters of an embedded hardware platform.