unit operations an approach to videogame criticism mit press

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Unit Operations

Author : Ian Bogost
ISBN : 9780262261890
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 71. 6 MB
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In Unit Operations, Ian Bogost argues that similar principles underlie both literary theory and computation, proposing a literary-technical theory that can be used to analyze particular videogames. Moreover, this approach can be applied beyond videogames: Bogost suggests that any medium -- from videogames to poetry, literature, cinema, or art -- can be read as a configurative system of discrete, interlocking units of meaning, and he illustrates this method of analysis with examples from all these fields. The marriage of literary theory and information technology, he argues, will help humanists take technology more seriously and hep technologists better understand software and videogames as cultural artifacts. This approach is especially useful for the comparative analysis of digital and nondigital artifacts and allows scholars from other fields who are interested in studying videogames to avoid the esoteric isolation of "game studies."The richness of Bogost's comparative approach can be seen in his discussions of works by such philosophers and theorists as Plato, Badiou, Zizek, and McLuhan, and in his analysis of numerous videogames including Pong, Half-Life, and Star Wars Galaxies. Bogost draws on object technology and complex adaptive systems theory for his method of unit analysis, underscoring the configurative aspects of a wide variety of human processes. His extended analysis of freedom in large virtual spaces examines Grand Theft Auto 3, The Legend of Zelda, Flaubert's Madame Bovary, and Joyce's Ulysses. In Unit Operations, Bogost not only offers a new methodology for videogame criticism but argues for the possibility of real collaboration between the humanities and information technology.

Civic Life Online

Author : W. Lance Bennett
ISBN : 9780262524827
Genre : Computers
File Size : 60. 25 MB
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The relationship of participation in online communities to civic and political engagement.

Persuasive Games

Author : Ian Bogost
ISBN : 9780262261944
Genre : Games
File Size : 84. 73 MB
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Videogames are an expressive medium, and a persuasive medium; they represent how real and imagined systems work, and they invite players to interact with those systems and form judgments about them. In this innovative analysis, Ian Bogost examines the way videogames mount arguments and influence players. Drawing on the 2,500-year history of rhetoric, the study of persuasive expression, Bogost analyzes rhetoric's unique function in software in general and videogames in particular. The field of media studies already analyzes visual rhetoric, the art of using imagery and visual representation persuasively. Bogost argues that videogames, thanks to their basic representational mode of procedurality (rule-based representations and interactions), open a new domain for persuasion; they realize a new form of rhetoric. Bogost calls this new form "procedural rhetoric," a type of rhetoric tied to the core affordances of computers: running processes and executing rule-based symbolic manipulation. He argues further that videogames have a unique persuasive power that goes beyond other forms of computational persuasion. Not only can videogames support existing social and cultural positions, but they can also disrupt and change these positions themselves, leading to potentially significant long-term social change. Bogost looks at three areas in which videogame persuasion has already taken form and shows considerable potential: politics, advertising, and learning.

Racing The Beam

Author : Nick Montfort
ISBN : 026201257X
Genre : Computers
File Size : 21. 80 MB
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A study of the relationship between platform and creative expression in the Atari VCS.

Immersive Education

Author : Martin Ebner
ISBN : 9783319220178
Genre : Computers
File Size : 20. 2 MB
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This book constitutes the refereed proceedings of the 4th European Immersive Education Summit, EiED 2014, held in Vienna, Austria, in November 2014. The 11 revised full papers presented were carefully reviewed and selected from 30 submissions. The papers are organized in topical sections on innovation and technological advancements in e-learning; immersive and emerging technologies for cultural and digital heritage.

Game After

Author : Raiford Guins
ISBN : 9780262320184
Genre : Games
File Size : 51. 24 MB
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We purchase video games to play them, not to save them. What happens to video games when they are out of date, broken, nonfunctional, or obsolete? Should a game be considered an "ex-game" if it exists only as emulation, as an artifact in museum displays, in an archival box, or at the bottom of a landfill? In Game After, Raiford Guins focuses on video games not as hermetically sealed within time capsules of the past but on their material remains: how and where video games persist in the present. Guins meticulously investigates the complex life cycles of video games, to show how their meanings, uses, and values shift in an afterlife of disposal, ruins and remains, museums, archives, and private collections.Guins looks closely at video games as museum objects, discussing the recontextualization of the Pong and Brown Box prototypes and engaging with curatorial and archival practices across a range of cultural institutions; aging coin-op arcade cabinets; the documentation role of game cartridge artwork and packaging; the journey of a game from flawed product to trash to memorialized relic, as seen in the history of Atari's infamous E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial; and conservation, restoration, and re-creation stories told by experts including Van Burnham, Gene Lewin, and Peter Takacs. The afterlife of video games -- whether behind glass in display cases or recreated as an iPad app -- offers a new way to explore the diverse topography of game history.

Promoting And Producing Evil

Author : Nancy Billias
ISBN : 9789042029392
Genre : Language Arts & Disciplines
File Size : 48. 95 MB
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The essays in this volume provide rich fodder for reflection on topics that are of urgent interest to all thinking people. Each one suggests new ways to contemplate our own role(s) in the production and promotion of evil. The authors encourage the reader to be challenged, outraged, and disturbed by what you read here. The eighth gathering of Global Perspectives on Evil and Human Wickedness, which took place in Salzburg in March 2007, provided a look at evil past, present, and future, from a broad spectrum of disciplinary perspectives. Papers were presented on the Holocaust, genocide, violence, sadism, pædophilia, physical, verbal, and visual weapons of mass destruction, and on the effects of a variety of media on our apperception of and responses to evil. One of the overarching themes that emerged was the ethical role of the observer or witness to evil, the sense that all of our writings are, in an echo of Thomas Merton's salient phrase, the conjectures of guilty bystanders. The notion of complicity was examined from a number of angles, and imbued the gathering with a sense of urgency: that our common goal was to engender change by raising awareness of the countless and ubiquitous ways in which evil can be actively or passively carried on and promoted. The papers selected for this volume provide a representative sample of the lively, provocative, and often disturbing discussions that took place over the course of that conference. This volume also contains a few papers from a sister conference, Cultures of Violence, which was held in Oxford in 2004. These papers have been included here because of their striking relevance to the themes that emerged in the Evil conference of 2007. At the Interface/Probing the Boundaries seeks to encourage and promote cutting edge interdisciplinary and multi-disciplinary projects and inquiry. By bringing people together from differing contexts, disciplines, professions, and vocations, the aim is to engage in conversations that are innovative, imaginative, and creatively interactive. Inter-Disciplinary dialogue enables people to go beyond the boundaries of what they usually encounter and share in perspectives that are new, challenging, and richly rewarding. This kind of dialogue often illuminates one's own area of work, is suggestive of new possibilities for development, and creates exciting horizons for future conversations with persons from a wide variety of national and international settings. By sharing cross-disciplinary insights and perspectives, ATI/PTB publications are designed to be both exploratory examinations of particular areas and issues, and rigorous inquiries into specific subjects. Books in the series are enabling resources which will encourage sustained and creative dialogue, and become the future resource for further inquiries and research.

The Meaning And Culture Of Grand Theft Auto

Author : Nate Garrelts
ISBN : 9780786428229
Genre : Games
File Size : 31. 45 MB
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Grand Theft Auto is among the most culturally significant video game franchises in history. Popular among adult gamers, the games have become icons for child endangerment, and are frequently cited in political rhetoric directed against exposing violence and indecency to minors. This work, the first academic book to focus exclusively on a single game series, presents essays that examine the complex and popular GTA phenomenon. Part 1 discusses issues of censorship, satire and the intellectual impact of GTA. Part 2 studies how players meaningfully and purposefully play Grand Theft Auto games.

The Ethics Of Computer Games

Author : Miguel Sicart
ISBN : 9780262261531
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 68. 1 MB
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Despite the emergence of computer games as a dominant cultural industry (and the accompanying emergence of computer games as the subject of scholarly research), we know little or nothing about the ethics of computer games. Considerations of the morality of computer games seldom go beyond intermittent portrayals of them in the mass media as training devices for teenage serial killers. In this first scholarly exploration of the subject, Miguel Sicart addresses broader issues about the ethics of games, the ethics of playing the games, and the ethical responsibilities of game designers. He argues that computer games are ethical objects, that computer game players are ethical agents, and that the ethics of computer games should be seen as a complex network of responsibilities and moral duties. Players should not be considered passive amoral creatures; they reflect, relate, and create with ethical minds. The games they play are ethical systems, with rules that create gameworlds with values at play. Drawing on concepts from philosophy and game studies, Sicart proposes a framework for analyzing the ethics of computer games as both designed objects and player experiences. After presenting his core theoretical arguments and offering a general theory for understanding computer game ethics, Sicart offers case studies examining single-player games (using Bioshock as an example), multiplayer games (illustrated by Defcon), and online gameworlds (illustrated by World of Warcraft) from an ethical perspective. He explores issues raised by unethical content in computer games and its possible effect on players and offers a synthesis of design theory and ethics that could be used as both analytical tool and inspiration in the creation of ethical gameplay.

Video Game Spaces

Author : Michael Nitsche
ISBN : 9780262293013
Genre : Games
File Size : 56. 44 MB
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The move to 3D graphics represents a dramatic artistic and technical development in the history of video games that suggests an overall transformation of games as media. The experience of space has become a key element of how we understand games and how we play them. In Video Game Spaces, Michael Nitsche investigates what this shift means for video game design and analysis. Navigable 3D spaces allow us to crawl, jump, fly, or even teleport through fictional worlds that come to life in our imagination. We encounter these spaces through a combination of perception and interaction. Drawing on concepts from literary studies, architecture, and cinema, Nitsche argues that game spaces can evoke narratives because the player is interpreting them in order to engage with them. Consequently, Nitsche approaches game spaces not as pure visual spectacles but as meaningful virtual locations. His argument investigates what structures are at work in these locations, proceeds to an in-depth analysis of the audiovisual presentation of gameworlds, and ultimately explores how we use and comprehend their functionality. Nitsche introduces five analytical layers -- rule-based space, mediated space, fictional space, play space, and social space -- and uses them in the analyses of games that range from early classics to recent titles. He revisits current topics in game research, including narrative, rules, and play, from this new perspective. Video Game Spaces provides a range of necessary arguments and tools for media scholars, designers, and game researchers with an interest in 3D game worlds and the new challenges they pose.

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