For your theoretical pleasure:
ETC Press is excited to announce the release of the first issue of the fourth volume of
Well Played: a journal on video games, value and meaning, co-edited by Sean Duncan and Caro Williams
PART ONE: DiGRA
Sean Duncan, Guest Editor
Where’s BattleTech in MechWarrior Online? A Case Study in Game Adaptation
One Click at a Time: Playing Porpentine’s howling dogs
Cause No Trouble: The Experience of “Serious Fun” in Papers, Please
Playing for the plot: Blindness, agency, and the appeal of narrative organization in Heavy Rain
Fanny A. Ramirez
Spore’s Playable Procedural Content Generation
PART TWO: Games Learning Society
Elder Scrolls Online: How ESO encourages group formation and cooperative play
Michelle Aubrecht, Jeff Kuhn, Justin Eames
Acting in the Light and on Fayth: Ritualized Play in Journey and Final Fantasy X
Kyrie Eleison H. Caldwell
Well Played & Well Watched: Dota 2, Spectatorship, and eSports
Magic the Gathering: A Learning Game Designer’s Perspective
For the Records – Understanding Mental Illness Through Metaphorical Games
Doris C. Rusch
Gaming a Non-Game? A Long Term (Self)-Experiment about FarmVille
The Stanley Parable
Phil J. Dougherty III
*These essays were part of the Well Played Sessions at GLS 10, the 2014 Games+Learning+Society Conference in Madison, WI, as well as the Well Played Sessions at the 2014 DiGRA conference in Salt Lake City, UT.
Spanish translation of my 2005 “Just what is it that makes computer games so different, so appealing?” article.
Translated by Mike Morell (Miguel Bernardo Olmedo Morell). Thanks!
For your theoretical pleasure, Game Studies 14/02.
Ability, Disability and Dead Space
by Diane Carr
How does the horror game Dead Space use the idea of disability? How are able bodies represented in the game? What is the relationship between disability as threat, and the various sensations and pleasures offered by the game? In this essay these questions are explored using textual analysis.
“Take That, Bitches!” Refiguring Lara Croft in Feminist Game Narratives
by Esther MacCallum-Stewart
Tomb Raider’s 2013 reboot enabled a re-consideration of Lara Croft and the gender politics of representing her. This paper re-evaluates Tomb Raider ten years after Game Studies first addressed it.
Battle on the Metric Front: Dispatches from Call of Duty’s Update War
by David Murphy
This article analyzes the controversy over a software update applied to Call of Duty: Black Ops II (Treyarch, 2013) using assemblage theory (Deleuze & Guattari, 1987). By combining information posted by players with a critical investigation of reward systems, the conflict is contextualized within a neoliberal climate of player/industry mistrust.
A Too-Coherent World: Game Studies and the Myth of “Narrative” Media
by Edward Wesp
This article revisits Jesper’ Juul’s oft-cited argument about video games’ “incoherent” fictional worlds to argue for a more open relationship between the study of video games and other media, based on the recognition that all media have complex relationships with the narratives and fictions they convey.
The Well-Played Game. A Player’s Philosophy (2013) by Bernard De Koven. Cambridge. Mass.: MIT Press. ISBN: 9780262019170. 176 pp.
A World of Excesses. Online Games and Excessive Playing (2013) by Faltin Karlsen. Farnham, UK: Ashgate. ISBN-13: 978-1409427636. 178 pp.[more]
New issue of Eludamos: Vol 8, No 1, special issue on Digital Seriality.
|Introduction: Ludic Seriality, Digital Seriality||HTML PDF|
|Shane Denson, Andreas Jahn-Sudmann||1 – 5|
|From NES-4021 to moSMB3.wmv: Speedrunning the Serial Interface||HTML PDF|
|Patrick LeMieux||7 – 31|
|“Tap, tap, flap, flap.” Ludic Seriality, Digitality, and the Finger||HTML PDF|
|Till A. Heilmann||33 – 46|
|Prolonging the Magic: The political economy of the 7th generation console game||HTML PDF|
|David B. Nieborg||47 – 63|
|Finishing the Fight, One Step at a Time: Seriality in Bungie’s Halo||HTML PDF|
|Jens Bonk||65 – 81|
|“Did you shoot the girl in the street?” – On the Digital Seriality of The Walking Dead||HTML PDF|
|Maria Sulimma||83 – 100|
|Seriality’s Ludic Promise: Film Serials and the Pre-History of Digital Gaming||HTML PDF|
|Scott Higgins||101 – 113|
|Types and Bytes. Ludic Seriality and Digital Typography||HTML PDF|
|Lisa Gotto||115 – 128|
|Digital Seriality as Structure and Process||HTML PDF|
|Dominik Maeder, Daniela Wentz||129 – 149|
|The Eternal Recurrence of All Bits: How Historicizing Video Game Series Transform Factual History into Affective Historicity||HTML PDF|
|Tobias Winnerling||151 – 170|
|Gandalf on the Death Star: Levels of Seriality between Bricks, Bits, and Blockbusters||HTML PDF|
|Rikke Toft Nørgård, Claus Toft-Nielsen|
- Frans Mäyrä, Katriina Heljakka, Anu Seisto: Editors’ Introduction to the Special Issue
- Stephanie de Smale: Building Material: Exploring Playfulness of 3D Printers
- Paul Coulton, Dan Burnett, Adrian Gradinar, David Gullick, Emma Murphy: Game Design in an Internet of Things
- Mark Lochrie: From the board to the streets: a case study of Local Property Trader
- Frederika A Eilers: SimCity and the Creative Class: Place, Urban Planning and the Pursuit of Happiness
- Inger Ekman: “That’s not a secure area”– physical-digital sound links in commercial locative games
- Karl Bergström, Staffan Björk: The Case for Computer-Augmented Games
- Marcus Carter: The Roll of the Dice in Warhammer 40,000
Game Studies: The International Journal of Computer Game Research has just published its latest issue (Volume 14, Issue 1, July 2014).
by Jonne Arjoranta
This article looks at how games have been constantly redefined in game studies without reaching an agreement. It is argued that such an agreement is not necessary, and a Wittgensteinian approach to game definitions is preferable. This approach sees the cycle of redefinition as a hermeneutic circle that advances the understanding of games.
by Simon Dor
The heuristic circle of real-time strategy process is a summary of key ideas about the cognitive and perceptive processes in StarCraft competitive play. It describes the way strategy in the game relies on the inference of three levels of game states and on the use of three kind of strategic plans at the same time.
by Johan Höglund
This article explores the construction of ludic spaces in the multiplayer map Grand Bazaar in Battlefield 3. It observes that this map constitutes a “magic node” that encircles a ludic space where only certain activities are possible. It concludes that the map Grand Bazaar represents a civilian Middle-Eastern locale as a permanent battleground.
by Ryan Lizardi
This article performs a close reading on the Bioshock series and determines that it encourages a comparative and contemplative look at the historical, cultivated through counterfactual and alternative experiences of accepted histories and reinforced through both ludic and narrative elements.
by Rainforest Scully-Blaker
Through a discussion of Michel de Certeau and Paul Virilio, this article puts forth a language to discuss speedrunning, the practice of beating a game as fast as possible without cheating, as it relates to games as spatial narratives. A new set of terms for discussing game rules as they relate to speedruns is also applied to the analysis.
by Gerald Voorhees
This essay contends that Halo 2 helps attitudinally position players in relation to the War on Terror. It considers a range of possible, potentially-overlapping affective responses to Halo 2, foregrounding both the rhetorical efficacy of digital games and the player’s agency to determine their rhetorical effect.
Sound in a Participatory Culture
by Kristine Jørgensen
Playing with Sound. A Theory of Interaction with Sound and Music in Video Games. (2013) by Karen Collins. Cambridge. Mass.: MIT Press. ISBN: 9780262312288 .
by Hanna Wirman
Play Redux: The Form of Computer Games. (2010) by David Myers. University of Michigan Press. ISBN: 978-0472050925