Category Archives: readings

Video Games and Insightful Gameplay: Special Issue of COMPASO

The Journal of Comparative Research in Anthropology and Sociology has a new special issue on Video games and insightful gameplay, guest edited by Doris Rusch.

Journal of Comparative Research in Anthropology and Sociology
ISSN 2068 – 0317
Special issue: 
Video games and insightful gameplay
Volume 6, Number 1

Guest Editor: Doris C. Rusch

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Editorial
Doris C. Rusch / Video games and insightful gameplay
[Full text / pdf]

Research articles – Special issue on Video Games and Insightful Gameplay
Matt Bouchard / Playing with progression, immersion, and sociality: Developing a framework for studying meaning in APPMMAGs, a case study
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Ioana Cărtărescu-Petrică / Those who play together stay together. A study of the World of Warcraft community of play and practice
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Joanna Cuttell / Arguing for an immersive method: Reflexive meaning-making, the visible researcher, and moral responses to gameplay
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Daniel de Vasconcelos Guimarães / Apocalyptic souls: the existential (anti) hero metaphor in the Metal Gear Solid: Snake Eater, Peace Walker and Ground Zeroes games
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Mikhail Fiadotau / Paratext and meaning-making in indie games
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Sonja Gabriel / Serious games – How do they try to make players think about immigration issues? An overview
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Enrico Gandolfi / Once upon a bit: Ludic identities in Italy, from militant nostalgia to frivolous divertissement
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Kishonna Gray & Wanju Huang / More than addiction: Examining the role of anonymity, endless narrative, and socialization in prolonged gaming and instant messaging practices
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Scott Hughes / Get real: Narrative and gameplay in The Last of us
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Youn Jung Huh / Making sense of gender from digital game play in three-year-old children’s everyday lives: An ethnographic case study
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Xeniya Kondrat / Gender and video games: How is female gender generally represented in various genres of video games?
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Alina Petra Marinescu-Nenciu / Collaborative learning through art games. Reflecting on corporate life with ‘Every Day the Same Dream’
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Elisabeta Toma / Self-reflection and morality in critical games. Who is to be blamed for war?
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Max Watson / A medley of meanings: Insights from an instance of gameplay in League of Legends
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

 

Other research articles
Yitzhak Alfasi, Moshe Levy & Yair Galily / Israeli football as an arena for post-colonial struggle: The case of Beitar Jerusalem FC
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Gautam Ghosh / An ‘infiltration’ of time? Hindu Chauvinism and Bangladeshi migration in/to Kolkata, India
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Adediran Daniel Ikuomola / An exploration of life experiences of left behind wives in Edo State, Nigeria
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Andra Jacob / Migrant’s houses as places and objects of cultural consumption and status display
[Abstract]          [Full text / pdf]

Book reviews
Alin Constantin /Book review – Roland Cvetkovski & Alexis Hofmeister, An Empire of Others: Creating Ethnographic Knowledge in Imperial Russia and the USSR, Central European University Press, Budapest, 2014.
[Full text / pdf]

Game Research Methods book out (for download)

ETC Press is excited to announce the release of “Game Research Methods: An Overview,” by Petri Lankoski & Staffan Björk, et al.
Games are increasingly becoming the focus for research due to their cultural and economic impact on modern society. However, there are many different types of approaches and methods than can be applied to understanding games or those that play games. This book provides an introduction to various game research methods that are useful to students in all levels of higher education covering both quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods. In addition, approaches using game development for research is described. Each method is described in its own chapter by a researcher with practical experience of applying the method to topic of games. Through this, the book provides an overview of research methods that enable us to better our understanding on games.
For more information, and to purchase or download a copy, visit:

 

Well played volume 4, number 1

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
http://press.etc.cmu.edu/content/volume-4-number-1

PART ONE: DiGRA
Sean Duncan, Guest Editor

Where’s BattleTech in MechWarrior Online? A Case Study in Game Adaptation
Hans-Joachim Backe

One Click at a Time: Playing Porpentine’s howling dogs
Hanli Geyser

Cause No Trouble: The Experience of “Serious Fun” in Papers, Please
Oscar Moralde

Playing for the plot: Blindness, agency, and the appeal of narrative organization in Heavy Rain
Fanny A. Ramirez

Spore’s Playable Procedural Content Generation
Gillian Smith

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
Chris Georgen

Magic the Gathering: A Learning Game Designer’s Perspective
Dan Norton

For the Records – Understanding Mental Illness Through Metaphorical Games
Doris C. Rusch

Gaming a Non-Game? A Long Term (Self)-Experiment about FarmVille
Heinrich Söbke

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.
http://www.glsconference.org/
http://www.digra.org/

Games Studies 14/02 is out

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.

Book Reviews

De Koven’s “The Well-Played Game”by Gonzalo Frasca
The Well-Played Game. A Player’s Philosophy (2013) by Bernard De Koven. Cambridge. Mass.: MIT Press. ISBN: 9780262019170. 176 pp.
Review of Karlsen’s A World of Excesses: On-line Games and Excessive Playingby Joyce Goggin
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

New issue of Eludamos: Vol 8, No 1, special issue on Digital Seriality.

ToDiGRA, vol 3, issue 1 on “Physical and Digital in Games and Play”.

This is a special issue on “Physical and Digital in Games and Play”. The issue editors are Frans Mäyrä, Katriina Heljakka, and Anu Seisto.  A big thanks to the issue editors and all authors for your work!

Content

  • 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
Transactions of the Digital Games Research Association (ToDIGRA) is a quarterly, international, open access, refereed, multidisciplinary journal dedicated to research on and practice in all aspects of games. ToDIGRA is published in print as well as electronically. ToDIGRA does not currently accept unsolicited submissions. Submissions must be directed towards a specific call for paper and conform to the specific focus of that call.

Game Studies 14/01 is out

Game Studies: The International Journal of Computer Game Research has just published its latest issue (Volume 14, Issue 1, July 2014).

www.gamestudies.org/1401

Articles

Game Definitions: A Wittgensteinian Approach

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.

The Heuristic Circle of Real-Time Strategy Process: A StarCraft: Brood War Case Study

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.

Magic Nodes and Proleptic Warfare in the Multiplayer Component of Battlefield 3

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.

Bioshock: Complex and Alternate Histories

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.

A Practiced Practice: Speedrunning Through Space With de Certeau and Virilio

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.

Play and Possibility in the Rhetoric of the War on Terror: The Structure of Agency in Halo 2

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.

Book Reviews

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 .

Play Redux is Solo-Play

by Hanna Wirman

Play Redux: The Form of Computer Games. (2010) by David Myers. University of Michigan Press. ISBN: 978-0472050925