Video games are becoming culturally dominant. But what does their popularity say about our contemporary society? This book explores video game culture, but in doing so, utilizes video games as a lens through which to understand contemporary social life. Video games are becoming an increasingly central part of our cultural lives, impacting on various aspects of everyday life such as our consumption, communities, and identity formation. Drawing on new and original empirical data – including interviews with gamers, as well as key representatives from the video game industry, media, education, and cultural sector – Video Games as Culture not only considers contemporary video game culture, but also explores how video games provide important insights into the modern nature of digital and participatory culture, patterns of consumption and identity formation, late modernity, and contemporary political rationalities. This book will appeal to undergraduate and postgraduate students, as well as postdoctoral researchers, interested in fields such Video Games, Sociology, and Media and Cultural Studies. It will also be useful for those interested in the wider role of culture, technology, and consumption in the transformation of society, identities, and communities.
Now in its second edition, the Encyclopedia of Video Games: The Culture, Technology, and Art of Gaming is the definitive, go-to resource for anyone interested in the diverse and expanding video game industry. This three-volume encyclopedia covers all things video games, including the games themselves, the companies that make them, and the people who play them. Written by scholars who are exceptionally knowledgeable in the field of video game studies, it notes genres, institutions, important concepts, theoretical concerns, and more and is the most comprehensive encyclopedia of video games of its kind, covering video games throughout all periods of their existence and geographically around the world. This is the second edition of Encyclopedia of Video Games: The Culture, Technology, and Art of Gaming, originally published in 2012. All of the entries have been revised to accommodate changes in the industry, and an additional volume has been added to address the recent developments, advances, and changes that have occurred in this ever-evolving field. This set is a vital resource for scholars and video game aficionados alike. Explores games, people, events, and ideas that are influential in the industry, rather than simply discussing the history of video games Offers a detailed understanding of the variety of video games that have been created over the years Includes contributions from some of the most important scholars of video games Suggests areas of further exploration for students of video games
This volume critically analyses the multiple lives of the ‘gamer’ in India. It explores the ‘everyday’ of the gaming life from the player's perspective, to not just understand how the games are consumed but also analyses how the gamer influences the products’ many (virtual) lives. Using an intensive ethnographic approach and in-depth interviews, this volume, Situates the practice of gaming under a broader umbrella of digital leisure activities and foregrounds the proliferation of gaming as a new media form and cultural artifact; Critically questions the term ‘gamer’, and the many debates surrounding the gamer tag, to expand on how the gaming identity is constructed and expressed; Details participants’ gaming habits, practices and contexts from a cultural perspective and analyses the participants’ responses to emerging industry trends, reflections on playing practices and their relationships to friends, communities and networks in gaming-spaces; Examines the offline and online spaces of gaming as sites of contestation between developers of games and the players. A holistic study, covering one of the largest video game bases in the world, this volume will be of great interest to scholars and researchers of cultural studies, media and communication studies, science and technology studies, as well as be of great appeal to the general reader.
This collection explores the relationship between digital gaming and its cultural context by focusing on the burgeoning Asia-Pacific region. Encompassing key locations for global gaming production and consumption such as Japan, China, and South Korea, as well as increasingly significant sites including Australia and Singapore, the region provides a wealth of divergent examples of the role of gaming as a socio-cultural phenomenon. Drawing from micro ethnographic studies of specific games and gaming locales to macro political economy analyses of techno-nationalisms and trans-cultural flows, this collection provides an interdisciplinary model for thinking through the politics of gaming production, representation, and consumption in the region.
In The Game Culture Reader, editors Jason C. Thompson and Marc A. Ouellette propose that Game Studies—that peculiar multi-, inter-, and trans-disciplinary field wherein international researchers from such diverse areas as rhetoric, computer science, literary studies, culture studies, psychology, media studies and so on come together to study the production, distribution, and consumption of games—has reached an unproductive stasis. Its scholarship remains either divided (as in the narratologists versus ludologists debate) or indecisive (as in its frequently apolitical stances on play and fandom). Thompson and Ouellette firmly hold that scholarship should be distinguished from the repetitively reductive commonplaces of violence, sexism, and addiction. In other words, beyond the headline-friendly modern topoi that now dominate the discourse of Game Studies, what issues, approaches, and insights are being, if not erased, then displaced? This volume gathers together a host of scholars from different countries, institutions, disciplines, departments, and ranks, in order to present original and evocative scholarship on digital game culture. Collectively, the contributors reject the commonplaces that have come to define digital games as apolitical or as somehow outside of the imbricated processes of cultural production that govern the medium itself. As an alternative, they offer essays that explore video game theory, ludic spaces and temporalities, and video game rhetorics. Importantly, the authors emphasize throughout that digital games should be understood on their own terms: literally, this assertion necessitates the serious reconsideration of terms borrowed from other academic disciplines; figuratively, the claim embeds the embrace of game play in the continuing investigation of digital games as cultural forms. Put another way, by questioning the received wisdom that would consign digital games to irrelevant spheres of harmless child’s play or of invidious mass entertainment, the authors productively engage with ludic ambiguities.
This book analyses gaming magazines published in Britain in the 1980s to provide the first serious history of the bedroom coding culture that produced some of the most important video games ever played.
There is little question of the social, cultural and economic importance of video games in the world today, with gaming now rivalling the movie and music sectors as a major leisure industry and pastime. The significance of video games within our everyday lives has certainly been increased and shaped by new technologies and gaming patterns, including the rise of home-based games consoles, advances in mobile telephone technology, the rise in more 'sociable' forms of gaming, and of course the advent of the Internet. This book explores the opportunities, challenges and patterns of gameplay and sociality afforded by the Internet and online gaming. Bringing together a series of original essays from both leading and emerging academics in the field of game studies, many of which employ new empirical work and innovative theoretical approaches to gaming, this book considers key issues crucial to our understanding of online gaming and associated social relations, including: patterns of play, legal and copyright issues, player production, identity construction, gamer communities, communication, patterns of social exclusion and inclusion around religion, gender and disability, and future directions in online gaming.
In this book, Marcella Szablewicz traces what she calls the topography of digital game culture in urban China, drawing our attention to discourse and affect as they shape the popular imaginary surrounding digital games. Szablewicz argues that games are not mere sites of escape from Real Life, but rather locations around which dominant notions about failure, success, and socioeconomic mobility are actively processed and challenged. Covering a range of issues including nostalgia for Internet cafés as sites of youth sociality, the media-driven Internet addiction moral panic, the professionalization of e-sports, and the rise of the self-proclaimed loser (diaosi), Mapping Digital Game Culture in China uses games as a lens onto youth culture and the politics of everyday life in contemporary China. Based on ethnographic fieldwork conducted between 2009 and 2015 and first-hand observations spanning over two decades, the book is also a social history of urban China’s shifting technological landscape.
With complex stories and stunning visuals eliciting intense emotional responses, coupled with opportunities for self-expression and problem solving, video games are a powerful medium to foster empathy, critical thinking, and creativity in players. As these games grow in popularity, ambition, and technological prowess, they become a legitimate art form, shedding old attitudes and misconceptions along the way. Examining the Evolution of Gaming and Its Impact on Social, Cultural, and Political Perspectives asks whether videogames have the power to transform a player and his or her beliefs from a sociopolitical perspective. Unlike traditional forms of storytelling, videogames allow users to immerse themselves in new worlds, situations, and politics. This publication surveys the landscape of videogames and analyzes the emergent gaming that shifts the definition and cultural effects of videogames. This book is a valuable resource to game designers and developers, sociologists, students of gaming, and researchers in relevant fields.
This is the first book that sheds light on global game industries and cultural policy. The scope covers the emerging and converging theory and models on cultural industries and its development, and their connection to national cultural policy and globalization. The primary focus of the book is on Asian cultural policy and industries while there are implicit comparisons throughout the book to compare Asia to other global markets. This book is aimed at advanced undergraduates, graduate students and faculty members in programs addressing cultural policy and digital games. It will also be of interest to those within the cultural policy community and to digital games professionals.
This book examines the complex network of influences that collide in the culture of digital fighting games. Players from all over the world engage in competitive combat with one another, forming communities in both real and virtual spaces, attending tournaments and battling online via internet-connected home game consoles. But what is the logic behind their shared playstyle and culture? What are the threads that tie them together, and how does this inform our understanding of competitive gaming, community, and identity? Informed by observations made at one of the biggest fighting game events in the world – the Evolution Series tournament, or "EVO" – and interviews with fighting game players themselves, this book covers everything from the influence of arcade spaces, to the place of gender and ethnicity in the community, to the clash of philosophies over how these games should be played in the first place. In the process, it establishes the role of technology, gameplay, and community in how these players define both themselves and the games that they play.
'This collection of legal, philosophical, economic, and cultural perspectives ultimately makes a strong case for the potential value of game environments for addressing diversity issues, but also raises important concerns regarding implementation of corporate and government policies in this sector highly recommended for anyone exploring this emerging field.' Benjamin T. Duranske, Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP, US 'Videogaming is serious business. But the legal and theoretical implications of online and virtual environments are little understood. Professor Graber and Ms. Burri-Nenova have done a masterful job of bringing together several insightful articles that inform us about the business, legal and sociological implications of digital gaming. Innovative, fast-paced, and engaging as games themselves, these scholarly works provide invaluable insight for academics, policy makers and perhaps even participants themselves about the reality behind virtual worlds.' Shubha Ghosh, University of Wisconsin Law School, US 'This is an excellent and path-breaking collection of sharp and carefully researched essays. It provides wonderful insights on numerous important aspects of the complex relationship between play, cultural diversity, communications policy, and the governance of virtual societies. The phenomenal growth of these new digital realms has raised important questions across the academic disciplines, making this book's interdisciplinary focus extremely helpful to potential regulators and university scholars alike.' Greg Lastowka, Rutgers School of law, Camden, US This innovative book provides transdisciplinary analyses of the nature and dynamics of digital game environments whilst tackling the existing fragmentation of academic research. Digital game environments are of increasing economic, social and cultural value. As their influence on diverse facets of life grows, states have felt compelled to intervene and secure some public interests. Yet, the contours of a comprehensive governance model are far from recognisable and governments are grappling with the complexity and fluidity of online games and virtual worlds as private spaces and as experimentation fields for creativity and innovation. This book contributes to a more comprehensive and fine-grained understanding of digital game environments, which is a precondition for addressing any of the pressing governance questions posed. Particular attention is given to the concept and policy objective of cultural diversity, which also offers a unique entry point into the discussion of the appropriate legal regulation of digital games. Governance of Digital Game Environments and Cultural Diversity will be of interest to researchers of media law, internet law and governance, cultural studies, anthropology and sociology. As the book addresses a highly topical theme, it will attract the attention of policymakers at national, regional and international levels and will also serve as a great resource tool for scholars in new media and in particular digital games and virtual worlds.