Open call for PhD projects at KADK in Copenhagen

At KADK in Copenhagen, we are posting a call for PhD applications for 2018, with deadline January 12, 2018.

This is an open call which can include, of course, games. A game PhD would be located with the research group of Visual Media. We are interested in candidates with strong research interests of their own.

KADK is a lively multidisciplinary institution located centrally in Copenhagen, offering a BA and MA in game design.

Please contact me for any questions. Jesper Juul.

Open call for PhD applications at The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts Schools of Architecture, Design and Conservation (KADK)

The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts Schools of Architecture, Design and Conservation (KADK) invites applications within subject areas of the institution for prequalification in connection with The Danish Council for Independent Research (DFF) Call for Research Educations outside the Universities (PhD).

PhD positions are 3 years, and include full tuition and a salary of approximately 3,350 EUR per month before taxes (DKK 300,174 per year) plus pension contributions of 17% of the salary (DKK 41,013 per year).


Applications to KADK must contain the following documents in PDF format:

  • Project description of no more than 5 pages. Please follow the DFF–Project Description template (, chapter 3.3) and include references/bibliography.
  • Applicant’s CV and list of publications for applicant (see also chapter 3.3)
  • Diploma and complete academic transcript, from applicant’s bachelor’s programme as well as graduate studies – or alternatively a written evaluation of your master’s thesis.

Please mention the relevant research program to evaluate your application: Architecture, Design or Conservation.

Application deadline  

12 Jan at 12:00 AM (Danish time).

To apply for the position

For questions concerning the advertisement contact Ditte Dahl at (general), or Jesper Juul (for game-related questions).

Kinephanos issue: It’s [not just] in the game

For your theoretical dissection.

Kinephanos special issue: “It’s [not just] in the game”: the promotional context of video games / le contexte promotionnel des jeux vidéo

Volume 7, Issue 1, November 2017 / Volume 7, numéro 1, novembre 2017
Edited by / Dirigé par Ed Vollans, Stephanie Janes, Carl Therrien & Dominic Arsenault

Introduction: “It’s [not Just] in the Game”: the Promotional Context of Video Games

Peer-reviewed articles / Articles avec comité de lecture

Exploring the Myth of the Representative Video Game Trailer
Independent Scholar

Now You’re Playing with Adverts: A Repertoire of Frames for the Historical Study of Game Culture through Marketing Discourse
Université de Montréal

Man’s Best Enemy: The Role of Advertising During Atari’s Launch in Brazil in 1983
Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul (PUCRS)

“The most Cinematic Game yet”
Bournemouth University

Marketing Authenticity: Rockstar Games and the Use of Cinema in Video Game Promotion
University of Warwick

Configurative Dynamics of Gender in Bioware’s Marketing for the Mass Effect Franchise
King’s College London

Pervasive Games Beyond the Promotional Tools: Approaches of Aesthetic Pervasiveness in Consumption of Experience
Federal Fluminense University

Not actual game play, but is it real life?: Live-action footage in digital game trailers and advertising as gamerspace
Walsh University

Quality of Video Game Trailers
Duquesne University

Game-playing, from Submission to Creation

I keep returning to this question: When we play a game, are we free –  or are we prisoners of the game rules?

Here is Playing, my contribution to Henry Lowood and Raiford Guins’ wonderful Debugging Game History collection.

In the piece I argue that there are four main conceptions of the act of game-playing, going from playing as submission to playing as creation.

1. Playing as submission, where the player is bound by the limits set forth by the game rules.

2. Playing as constrained freedom, where the game creates a space in which players acquire a certain amount of freedom and the opportunity to perform particular acts.

3. Playing as subversion, where the player works around both the designer’s intentions and the game object’s apparent limitations.

4. Playing as creation, where the game is ultimately irrelevant for (or at least secondary to) the actual playing.

Read the full text here:


ToDIGRA special issue, 1st DiGRA and FDG conference

For your theoretical consumption:

Special Issue, 1st Joint International Conference of DIGRA and FDG

Introduction PDF
Ashley Brown, Rafael Bidarra
No-one Plays Alone PDF
Chris Bateman
“Ruinensehnsucht”: Longing for Decay in Computer Games PDF
Mathias Fuchs
Creative Communities: Shaping Process through Performance and Play PDF
Lynn Parker, Dayna Galloway
Playful Fandom: Gaming, Media and the Ludic Dimensions of Textual Poaching PDF
Orion Mavridou
A Review of Social Features in Social Network Games PDF
Janne Paavilainen, Kati Alha, Hannu Korhonen
Focus, Sensitivity, Judgement, Action: Four Lenses for Designing Morally Engaging Games PDF
Malcolm Ryan, Dan Staines, Paul Formosa
Developing Ideation Cards for Mixed Reality Game Design PDF
Richard Wetzel, Tom Rodden, Steve Benford
Source Code and Formal Analysis: A Reading of Passage PDF
Ea Christina Willumsen

ISSN: 2328-9422

Well Played volume 6 number 3

For your theoretical delectation: Well Played: volume 6 number 3

Agency, Identity, Sex, Gender, and Pokémon Go
Allison Bannister

So Close You Can Feel Her
Prostitution, Proximity & Empathy in Grand Theft Auto 5
Elena Bertozzi, Amelia Bertozzi-Villa

Learning at the Farm
Developmental Psychology in Peekaboo Barn
Carly A. Kocurek, Jennifer L. Miller

Taking Over the World, Again?
Examining Procedural Remakes of Adventure Games
Anastasia Salter

Purchase from, or Download for free

Game Studies Vol 17, Issue 1

For your theoretical delight, a new issue of Game Studies.

Game Studies: The International Journal of Computer Game Research has just published its latest issue (Volume 17, Issue 1, July 2017). All articles are available at



Watching People Is Not a Game: Interactive Online Corporeality, and Videogame Streams

by Sky LaRell Anderson

This article examines in order to reveal the design strategies it employs to direct awareness to the presence of players and viewers. Specifically, I describe the elements that direct attention toward humans, persons and personalities outside of games.


Glory to Arstotzka: Morality, Rationality, and the Iron Cage of Bureaucracy in Papers, Please

by Jason J. Morrissette

This article examines how ludic and thematic elements coalesce in Papers, Please to replicate the monotony of bureaucratic work, trapping players in Weber’s iron cage of bureaucracy. Moreover, by offering opportunities to deviate from administrative protocols, the game highlights the inherent tension between morality and bureaucratic rationality.


Abstracting Evidence: Documentary Process in the Service of Fictional Gameworlds

by Aaron Oldenburg

This paper looks at a strategy for creating content and gameplay using documentary processes such as interviews and on-location evidence collection for games that abstract that content with varying levels of fictionalization.


An Enactive Account of the Autonomy of Videogame Gameplay

by Jukka Vahlo

In this paper, the phenomenon of videogame gameplay is analyzed from an enactive view of social cognition. It is asserted that videogame gameplay arises as an autonomous organization in the reciprocal dynamics between at least one social agent and a responsive game. This autonomy is argued as both original and irreducible to its constituents.

Nordic Game Jam – the original 2006 plan

Today is the start of the 12th installment of the Nordic Game Jam.

Going through my old files, here is the draft document describing the first “Nordic Game Jam” (yes, quotes) in 2006, which was organized by Henriette Moos, Gorm Lai and me.

By now, the language is positively quaint, patiently explaining that it’s about “making a game in a weekend”, and framing it as a workshop.

Nordic Game Jam is a weekend workshop in January 27-29th 2006 at the IT University in Copenhagen, Denmark. The workshop is about “making a game in a weekend”, dealing with game design and technical issues, and meeting other people working with game design and development.

This was not the first game jam to be held, but it was possibly the first to be centered around teams, rather than around individual programmers. This was a departure from the single-programmer and engine-oriented style of the Indie Game Jam, which I’d been to in 2005.

During the next few years, the Nordic Game Jam helped the broad acceptance of the game jam format, and it’s in part responsible for the incredible glut of indie and experimental games that we see today.

Compare today’s environment with the fact that my mere participation in the 2005 Indie Game Jam was enough to make my game shown at the Experimental Gameplay workshop at GDC. Doesn’t work like that anymore.

I remain extremely happy to have participated in making the Nordic Game Jam happen.

Game Developers Conference 2017 in tweets: March 3rd #gdc17

Continued from yesterday’s survey of Game Developers Conference 2017 tweets,  here are the most common words on the #gdc17 twitter hashtag for March 3rd 2017, fifth and final day of the conference:

Michael Chu of Blizzard gets the most mentions, quoted for saying that Blizzard embraces diversity in Overwatch.

And last day, of course.

And those were the main themes on Twitter.

Time: The first time I did this, a mere 8 years ago, Twitter wasn’t yet an integral part of the communication strategy of every company on the planet, so it felt more like these word clouds were revealing something fundamental about the conference.

Today, Twitter has to be approached with some skepticism. I have had to remove the endless stream of tweets that concerned the promise of prizes for everyone retweeting a particular tweet. And you never know how many accounts are real, and how many are puppets made for whatever reason.

But still: This GDC had no dominant theme.