January 2008 Archives

Participation Portfolio 3 - Gaming and Me!

This is the last portfolio for MWG: Video Game Culture and Theory and covers many important concepts that I have learned since portfolio 2. After reading Newman’s article called, "The Myth of the Ergodic Videogame'' I learned how on-lookers can have the same pleasure that the actual gamer does. My reflection called, “Character Relationships (Newman)" correlates with Ashley and Zach’s blog entries because of the same ideas we had for this concept. The Presubmission Report and Ex 4: Article Analysis assignments went hand-in-hand, to say, because of how important they were for my research paper. With the completion of “Ex 4” I was able to find and analyze academic articles in a better way because I understood what to look for. For example, finding the thesis, opposing and supporting ideas, and also how the article differs from my experience with traditional and NGJ reviews were some learned concepts.
The recent computer game called “Fatworld” was released and I was able to play it and express my initial opinions. “The Video Game” allowed me to compose a claim (thesis) that was able to be discussed and be debatable among my classmates. This was made possible after finishing the Persuasive Games book by Bogost because he explained different elements in a video game such as procedural rhetoric, values, and artistic expression. I had never heard about the term procedural rhetoric before reading this book and found it to be a very interesting term. In my blog entry called, “Procedural Rhetoric and Maintaining Order” I describe how important it is that video games contain a procedure or method for the player to follow.
After reading the detailed and informative “comment” made by Dr. Jerz about my “Presubmission Report” I realized that I needed to focus on some of my writing skills. This included SHOWING instead of TELLING when describing a research study or stating my opinion, using more specific wording, and also use scholarly quotes to back up my opinion. After completing this assignment and reviewing the feedback I was now able to compose my blog for Dr. Jerz’s "review" of Fatworld. Now knowing my feedback I was able to think of questions that the class could consider when playing or reviewing the game. Within my blog entry, “Fatworld - Interesting Game” Darrell commented about some of my questions and he was able to think of some ideas that arose while playing the game.
After reading the second half of Persuasive Games I was able to apply the learned concepts with a comparison between “Turok and Bogost.” This was important because it sparked discussion and I was able to list my connections between the text and video games. The last section of the book was interesting to me because of the chapter about “Religion and Values.” I compared literature with video games and how morality plays an important role. My “Annotated Bibliography” and “Class Presentation” were easier to compose together because of how each assignment related to each other. Most of my sources from my bibilography were able to be used in my class presentation because I understood what each source consisted of and how they could relate to my research paper.
The last part of Persuasive Games let me learn new concepts about “determinability”, “English,” and “Traditions.” My new experience with text-based games and these learned ideas were very important to me because I was able to connect everything I learned during the course. I would like to finally say that I have enjoyed reading everyone’s blog entries and their comments to me and I hope they feel the same. Now that the class is coming to a close I have completed all blog entries, reflections and assignments for this course that were listed on the “Outline.” Blogging is a great learning tool that lets classmates, like us, interact in a virtual classroom environment and I wish everyone best of luck in your future endeavors!

Traditions and Values - Reflection (Bogost 3)

After finishing the last section of Persuasive Games I learned a lot of information about “Values and Aspirations.” It was amazing to see how this category was broken into many parts which included “Consumption” to “Values of Work” and “Morality and Faith.” In my blog entry called “Religion and Values” I analyze the quote on page 282 that states, “Issues of morality in videogames are more often found in newspaper headlines than in game mechanics” (Bogost 282). This quote seemed very true to me because video games usually do not use morality as a key concept.
Many video games contain morality through choosing different options in the game. For example, if you choose one doorway in a video game instead of the other then there may be a different outcome. On the other hand, Bogost uses examples such as Bible Buffet and Sunday Funday to show that some games are focused around religion. I never knew that there were these types of games in the market, but I think it is great because it can be a wonderful teaching tool. The video game example Bible Buffet could be great in Sunday school because it could let the children learn Bible trivia. This is just a suggestion because I have never played the game and do not know what is involved with it.
Video games contain many values whether they are seen through procedures or visual graphics. The use of religion in video games is great because it shows that game designers are trying to include many options for the player to relate to. It will be interesting to see how future generations interpret the values in current video games.

English and Video Games - Reflection (Bogost 2)

After reading half of Persuasive Games I began to understand virtual reality, rhetoric, and persuasive games better. Many video games encourage people to do things such as eat healthy or save money in order to buy something. The saving money aspect can be seen with the “Kool-Aid” game because the player has to buy the Kool-Aid packets and save them to get the game. Some advergames such as Tapper are not educational because they use alcohol as a focus point.
Bogost presents a “Procedural Literacy” chapter that was very education and informative for me because I am an English major. I never thought about games containing literacy. Some video games contain puzzles or problems that the player must solve in order to win the level. One example was the game Tetris because it makes the player use there cognitive abilities to win before the block reaches the bottom. Bogost also included the literacy concept with procedures and how game designers develop games. This makes sense to me because a programmer must use proper literacy in order to make a game procedural. The video game “Sim City” shows this idea because the player is able to learn about the environment and how planning is important when building a town, road, bridge or anything.
Instead of thinking that video games are just fun I learned how they contain many everyday aspects. The use of “procedural literacy” and “advergames” let me understand how companies and designers use games as a learning tool or for advertising. Every game teaches a concept either through a procedure or marketing technique.

Video Games and Bogost - Discussion and Reflection

After reading “Persuasive Games” I had developed many different theories and feelings towards video games. I knew that the book was going to be an interesting read from the beginning because I could relate to a lot of examples that he talked about. The first example was about procedures, policies, and technology. When playing video games you can see that there are specific rules and pre-programmed procedures because of how each level requires another skill.
Bogost introduced the concept of “Political Processes” and this is something that I would have never noted in a video game. The example of BioChemFX is important to consider because of how important rules in today’s society are. The beginning of Chapter two was a great read for me because of how it related to the course specifically. The games that were noted were “September 12th” and “Madrid” and let me understand how both games represent a form of rhetoric failure.
I remember that before playing a video game there is always a reference to some type of advertising. This may be before the game starts or during the game such as a logo on a car. After learning about demonstrative, illustrative, and associative advertising I was able to apply them to the games that I played in class. Take “Fatworld” for instance and how the game uses exercise and obesity as a learning tool and how illustrative it can be.
The chapter called, “Procedural Literacy” was particularly important to me because I always like being able to refer literacy to another concept. I compared “Fatworld” to “Sim City” and learned how educational both games are. A last comment about this book is how Bogost refers to values in society and notes Laurel’s ideas. This was important because I compared there ideas amongst each other and noticed how rhetoric had a factor.
The entire time that I was reading this book I felt like I could refer to something in the class. For example, I related Roger Ebert’s issue about artistic expression to Bogost’s chapter about “Values and Aspirations.” After playing many of the video games mentioned in this book I felt that I was able to relate to the topic better than if I had not played the game. Bogost’s last line states, “And the logics that drive our games make claims about who we are, how our world functions, and what we want it to become” (Bogost 340) shows how video games are important in today’s society.

After finishing "Persuasive Games" by Bogost do you feel that video games play an imporant role in today's modern world?

Everything Is Already Determined - Reflection (Bogost 1)

I’m going to use my own blog entry called, “Procedural Rhetoric and Maintaining Order!” to reflect upon the first part of the book. Bogost talks a lot about “Procedural Rhetoric” and how video games incorporate it. I really like how Bogost uses rules as a form of expression because it only makes us think in different ways. I believe that video games all contain a procedure that is pre-inputted by the game designer.
One specific example that I found interesting was the game called, “Tax Invaders” because of how simple it looks, but the game meaning is very detailed. The game uses tax strategy as a key concept and the player has to use a procedure in order to get through the game. Bogost also explains “procedural media” (Bogost 52) and how play is incorporated into it.
There are some parts of the first section that I found hard to understand. This first concept is on page 60 and uses “Fogg’s suggestions about persuasive technology” (Bogost 60). The six terms differ from Bogost’s ideology because they do not make the user see the procedures involved in technology. The “Political Processes” chapter was very interesting to me because of the game BioChemFX. This is because the game gives a simulation of a possible negative event.
Overall, Bogost presents many ideas and questions that are interesting to consider such as “Persuasive Games versus Serious Games.” Not only does he give explanations about every idea, but he provides the reader with examples of video games that relate to the specific topic.

Some questions for the class I thought would be interesting:

1. Is technology a persuasive tool that uses specific ideas to influence society?

2. Are text-based adventure games considered "Procedural Rhetoric" Or "Persuasive?"

These are just a few ideas that I think would be interesting to consider for the first part of Bogost.

Class Presentation: Gender Equality in Video Games


Lara Croft excels at the kind of actions performed by Jack Bauer in 24, Anakin Skywalker in Star Wars Episode 3, and Travis Grady in Silent Hill: Origins. Many video game main characters are males and the games do not represent females. Advanced Media Network columnist Aaron Roberts admits that “games are considered a highly male-centric form of entertainment" and suggests that men only play Tomb Raider because they want to look at a pretty girl, but a BBC news article suggests that girls can offer a lot to the video game world and conducted an experiment of adolescent boys and girls. Do you agree with Roberts? Or do you think that women are in video games because they represent the second-half of culture?

Most video games are focused toward being masculine and able to conquer everything whereas games like Barbie provide a more sensitive and caring side. When reviewing the book review called, “From Barbie to Mortal Kombat: Gender and Computer Games” by Jackson one can see how important female video games can be. When “Barbie Fashion Designer” was released thousands of girls bought and played the game. Is this because it was a Barbie game or because girls like feminine games? It is interesting to think how the psychological make-up of girls and boys differs. Blumberg composed an article called, “Boys’ and Girls’ Use of Cognitive Strategy When Learning to Play Video Games” that used an experiment to determine which types of games females and males like. The study concluded that girls and boys used different internal and external responses.

When typing the keywords “female video game characters” into a Google search bar I received many sex related pictures. Some of them included using female breasts as a focus point or wearing limited clothing. This representation of female characters in video games is somewhat negative and gives an impression that females are “sex objects.” Would you agree or disagree that Lara Croft and other female characters are designed to be sexy and attractive? While researching my topic I came across this YouTube home video that presents a woman's opinion on the topic. (When the movie concludes pay special attention to her last statement about video gamers).

Now let’s focus on looking at video games through a female’s lens or viewpoint. It is important to consider values, role-model status, and having power as part of your observation. Before deciding on an answer lets take a look at Brenda Laurel, the author of “Utopian Entrepreneur,” who stated, “Stories, movies, videogames, and Websites don’t have to be about values to have a profound influence on values” (Laurel 62). Does the video game “Tomb Raider” incorporate values? Also, let’s use “Roger Ebert’s” opinion of video games not being an artistic form. Roger believes that video games cannot be compared to famous literature such as Shakespeare or Jonathan Swift. After reviewing different opinions about video games does your lens change?

On a closing note, you as a player must look beyond the stereotypes provided by society. Elisabeth Hayes uses her article called “Women, Video Gaming and Learning: Beyond Stereotypes” to describe how males and females have the same playing experience. Some may say that males put more effort into video games than females. Would you agree or disagree? The lack of female gender roles in video games have been attributed to stereotypes and video games being focused towards the male culture. I will leave you with this article by Helen Kennedy who offers “Lara Croft as a Feminist Icon or Cyberbimbo" and challanges the many stereotypes that are used in today's society about females in video games.

Anotated Bibilography

Works Cited
Blumberg, Fran C., and Lori M. Sokol.. “Boys' and Girls' Use of Cognitive Strategy When Learning to Play Video Games.” Journal of General Psychology 131.2 (Apr. 2004): 151-158. Academic Search Elite. EBSCO. Seton Hill University, Greensburg, PA. 13 January 2008.

Summary: Blumberg’s article is designed to show how boys and girls cognitive structures are different. She uses an experimental observation that includes 104 elementary grade students and the video game, “Sonic the Hedgehog 2.” Each child was tested in a quiet room and was asked questions about video games. One question was, “How often would you say you play video games? A lot or a little?” (Blumberg 154). A code scheme was used for the responses and categorized as either internal or external. The conclusion of this study stated that the children would use internal approaches instead of external.

How it will help my paper: This article uses an experiment that finds the differences in cognitive abilities within children. This will help my research paper introduce how children’s cognitive abilities are different and boys are more likely to use internal strategies. The thesis of Blumberg’s paper states that how a research study will prove cognitive abilities with boys and girls.

Bonanno, Philip, and P. A. M. Kommers.. “Gender Differences and Styles in the Use of Digital Games.” Educational Psychology 25.1 (Feb. 2005): 13-41. Academic Search Elite. EBSCO. Seton Hill University, Greensburg, PA. 13 January 2008.

Summary: This academic article illustrates gender differences in digital media games. Bonanno introduces how men are better at “visuospatial” than women (15). He then states that women are better at “perceptual speed” than men (15). He lists the advantages of men and women and then introduces playing time, motivations, and game preferences. Each one of these categories connects with a specific study. For example Rosengren and Windahl’s information is listed in the motivations paragraph. An experiment was then conducted with biology students about digital games. The study showed that the PC, ranking in at 56%, was the most used gaming system. The study then went on to show how females played less than males. A visual chart was used and proved that females were not into playing as much as males. The article conducted many more studies including game coding, student grouping, and specific genres.

How it will help my paper: This shows the how different genders have different strengths and abilities. The experiments will be useful to incorporate into my paper because it will show how females differ than males when it comes to video games. When relating to specific genres I will be able to note that the “game genre study showed how females and males are better at certain games.” Overall, this article will be useful to refer to when making specific points.

Bryce, J. & Rutter, J. “Killing Like a Girl: Gendered Gaming and Girl Gamers’ Visibility”, DigiPlay 3: Leisure Constraints, Entitlement and Access to Technologies of Leisure, University of Central Lancashire, 15th Sept.

Summary: This article explains the many concerns and problems with the video game industry. The article uses “gendered game content” as a heading and shows that female characters are stereotyped and given limited roles. The use of violence in then examined to show how females don’t enjoy hurting things. The next topic is “gendered spaces” which explains how females don’t get the space they need. The article goes on to provide examples of “gender activities.” The conclusion of the article re-states that there are many ways to explain gender differences in video games.

How it will help my paper: I will be able to use this article by listing specific examples of video games such as “Tomb Radier” or “The Sims” and show the gender differences. This article can be incorporated into a paragraph about video games being gendered based or also how females are stereotyped objects in society.

Flanagan, Mary. “Next Level: Women’s Digital Activism through Gaming.” Digital Media Revisited. England: London, 2003.

Summary: Flanagan’s article describes many topics such as cyber feminism, questioning women, self-discovery, and many more. The first topic is cyber feminism which shows how women have become a part of the video game industry. This section goes on to explain how articles about females in video games have brought much controversy. The section about questioning women talks about how stereotypes have made women seem like sex objects. The next interesting topic was self-discovery which talked about how women’s video games have introduced expressing yourself through art or culture.

How it will help my paper: In the summary I talked about three specific sections in the article that stood out to me, but there are many more. The use of cyber feminism could be included towards the end of my research paper which talks about how women are an important part of video games. When analyzing “questioning women” and “self-discovery” I will be able to talk about controversy of women in video games and also how women are shown as sex appeal objects instead important human beings.

Gailey, Christine Ward. “Mediated Messages: Gender, Class, and Cosmos in Home Video Games.” Journal of Popular Culture 27.1 (Summer 1993): 81-97. Academic Search Elite. EBSCO. Seton Hill University, Greensburg, PA. 14 January 2008.

Summary: Gailey’s article describes the messages that video games can portray. These include gender, class, and cosmos. She uses a project that studied “Nintendo” and “Home Video Games.” This then lead into the discussion about “morality games” and class differences. She then shows how technology can be an important part of games through learning new strategies. The next topic was “class” and she mentions that the price of video games can distinguish which class buys them. This is something that I had not thought about before, but I definitely agree with it. She goes on to talk about what kinds of games boys and girls like to play. For example, she notes “Fantasy-adventure” games as being girl’s games.

How it will help my paper: This article is very interesting because of how Gailey introduces the different topics with video games. I will use this article when talking about specific video games and what gender they are liked by. Gailey uses an important topic called, “Impact: Adults’ and Children’s Views” (91) which explains video games and there effects.

Hayes, Elisabeth. “Women, Video Gaming & Learning: Beyond Stereotypes.” TechTrends: Linking Research & Practice to Improve Learning 49.5 (Sep. 2005): 23-28. Academic Search Elite. EBSCO. Seton Hill University, Greensburg, PA. 13 January 2008.

Summary: This article talks about theories in video games and argues three female gaming issues. These include gaming experience, gendered games, and “acquired” skills. She first uses role-playing games as a starting point and moves into experience. Hayes uses the game “Morrowind” as a game with many advantages. Many people think that women like to shop instead of play games, but Hayes tells us that women like games that they can relate and express thereselves in. She debates violence in video games as being a “masculine thing” to women not liking it because it is “direct competition.” She lists five key topics when it comes to gendered learning. The first one is, “Avoid Stereotypes” (27).

How it will help my paper: This article relates to websites such as womengamers.com and how some females enjoy playing games. In addition, when explaining the three issues about females in video games I can use “Morrowind” as a starting point. I like how Hayes uses five points about gender in video games and I can use it to explain what video games need to do in order to attach females.

Jackson, Kathy Merlock. “From Barbie to Mortal Kombat: Gender and Computer Games (Book).” Journal of American & Comparative Cultures 23.3 (Fall 2000): 125. Academic Search Elite. EBSCO. Seton Hill University, Greensburg, PA. 13 January 2008.

Summary: This entry is a book review showing the psychological aspects of women and men. Jackson notes specific statements that are very strong when talking about gender in video games. One example is, “males have tended to control the computer games industry, create games for themselves, and market exclusively to boys” (125). This statement is true when thinking about video games and shows how women are not even consider apart of the gaming industry. The review goes on to talk about the release of the video game called, “Barbie Fashion Designer” and how successful it was.

How it will help my paper: This article can help start my paper by introducing statements like the one noted above and talking about how important female video games can be in society. This review introduces many ideas that could help the video game industry improve on being not so gendered bias.

Kasavin, Greg. “Samus' Suit Was Made by Men.” GameSpot. 16 Jan. 2008. .

Summary: This website article is composed by an executive editor of GameSpot who talks about how video games are made mostly by men. He continues on to explain how disappointing some of video are today because they do not even include women. He uses the video game “Metroid” as an example of introducing women into the gaming experience. This only occurs at the end of the game when the player wins.

How it will help my paper: I can include this paper in my article because it shows how women are separated from the video game experience. The example that he uses is just one game that vaguely uses a female character, but the player does not know it until the end of the game. This article can show how females are limited in video games.

Kennedy, Helen. “Lara Croft: Feminist or Cyberbimbo.” Game Studies. 16 Jan. 2008. .

Summary: The title of this article gives the reader insight about what is going to be talked about. This article uses the video game “Tomb Radier” as a feminist or cyberbimbo example. It starts off by explaining how “Tomb Raider” started and how successful it was. This game introduces many debatable topics about females in video games. Kennedy starts by talking about “Lara Croft as Action Heroine” and how females can be heroes in video games just like males. He then continues by talking about a male player playing a female character. Kyoko Date is introduced as a Japan video game character similar to Lara Croft. This article uses Lara Croft as a comparison to females in video games and how successful they can be.

How it will help my paper: This article will help my paper by providing a well-known video game (Tomb Raider) and analyzing it for female success in video games or how important they can be. Kennedy makes some interesting points about Lara Croft being an “Action Heroine” and this can help make my paper more specific because it shows a female character in control of the entire video game.

Pratt, Mary K. “She Got Game.” Computerworld 41.23 04 June 2007: 32-36. Academic Search Elite. EBSCO. Seton Hill University, Greensburg, PA. 13 January 2008.

Summary: This important article shows how women can bring “ideas to the table” just like men can. An important quote used in this article stated, “If we want to have [game] titles that reach a diverse audience, our workforces has to reflect that diversity” (34). This title explains what the article is trying to portray because the video game industry must accept female ideas for women to want to play the games. A pie-chart poll shows that more than 60% of males are game players with only 38% being females. This article expresses how important the female voice and brain can be.

How it will help my paper: This article will be important when talking about the women voice in video game industries. The use of statistics can be a focus point that needs to be changed because women are at a lesser advantage when it comes to playing video games. I can also include “What Women Bring” into a paragraph about women’s ideas are as important as males.

Religion and Values - Bogost Complete

Quote: "Issues of morality in videogames are more often found in newspaper headlines than in game mechanics" (Bogost 282).

Why is this?

Most books contain an issue about morality and offers the reader with symbolism, imagery, and allegories. It seems that video games do not use religion or morality in the game mechanics. Is this because it would only appeal to certain religious groups and they would not make such a large profit? Ren Reynolds talks about video games using "good" or "bad" and this can be debated in all video games. For example, the video game "Turok" in my opinion is good because it is fun, interactive, and is a good action-adventure game. On the other hand, many people could say that it is bad because it has a lot of violence and issues of killing things. When thinking about moral choices in games this can be seen throughout all video games. If the player makes a wrong choice then the answer could be failure or re-starting the level. Remember playing the text game "Shade" and how there was light areas and dark areas. This game made the player decide where to go in the apartment and if the player made a wrong choice the answer was simple.
Do you think that video games incorporate "Morality and Faith?" Or should the games focus on being fun and letting the player make their own choices?

Advertising - Bogost Continued...

Quote: "There are three important types of advertising that can particpate in such persuasion games: demonstrative, illustrative, and associative advertising" (Bogost 153).

This quote is interesting because advertising is in everything we see today, from billboards to the internet. The definitions of these three types of advertising can be interrelated. "Demonstrative advertising provides direct information, Illustrative advertising communicates indirect information, and associative advertising communiates indirect information, focusing specifically on the intangibles of a product" (Bogost 153-54). Now when comparing these types of advertising into video games I would think that demonstrative advertising would be affective because it is direct. Before the menu of the video game there is always commericals and previews to something. This can also be seen throughout the game also. Just think about "Need for Speed" and the cars that are used. Names such as Mercedes and BMW are all over them, along with very expensive car names too!

Is advertising an important part of video games? This is an interesting question to consider and I would be interested in any comments.

Turok and Bogost


This blog entry is the discussion question for Jan. 16, 2008.

I always liked the video game "Turok." I think that this game is very interactive and fun. This game uses visual and digital rhetoric because of how the character has to win the level. The game makes the character find key items and sections of the level. For example, the character has to find better weapons as the game progresses. This is the visual aspect, but incorporates much detail rhetoric. This games uses a lot of violence because the character must shoot all of the animals or enemies in order to continue in the game. I believe that this game uses procedural programming by making the player complete all of these so called "tasks" before winning the level. This is just a basic review of Turok, but I would enjoy to hear comments from classmates that played this game before.

Do you think that "Turok" uses procedurality and rhetoric? And what other ways is the game "Turok" related to Bogost?

Fatworld - Interesting Game!?


This blog entry is a comment for Dr. Jerz's review of Fatworld.

I first want to say that I agree completely that the gameplay has problems. When I first started playing the game I thought, "It seems so basic and is designed for younger children." Dr. Jerz stated, "the game world is full of floating signs labeled "enter" and I think that this is too basic for a video game (it seems childish or maybe it is just illustrating the point by saying it). The next section in the review was, "Exploring Fatworld on Foot" and I thought the same thing. The character moves very slowly to point that I become frustrated. Did anyone else find it frustrating that your character moved so slowly?

Bogost stated, "Persuasive games mount procedural rhetorics effectively" (Bogost 46). In addition, "procedural rhetoric is the practive of using process persuasively, just as verbal rhetoric is the practice of using oratory persuasively and visual rhetoric is the practive of using images persuasively" (Bogost 28). I think that Fatworld is a persuasive game based on the visual rhetoric aspect only. The game does not seem to have the procedures worked out that great, but the visuals are there and show the player how healthy living is important.
I did not see the "exercising minigame," but found this to be very interesting. Since my character was extremly obese it would have been a benefit to play the exercise game. This would have allowed my character to walk faster and as Dr. Jerz stated, "my character's default speed was much, much faster, making exploration less tedious." This would have made the game much more fun and less frustrating. I also had another issue with the use of the space bar because I kept pressing the enter key. I think this is because I am so used to pressing enter for everything and this was a change to my routine.
Dr. Jerz said, "Why do I need to go shopping at all? Do I have to stock up my refrigerator so that when I shut the game off, my PC will have enough food to live until I return?" This question was very interesting to me also because I found the shopping part to be unrelated. This may be because the game wants the player to understand that you must shop healthly in real life in order to maintain proper health.
Dr. Jerz's last question was particularly interesting and stated, "is this just the game's way of telling me I can go home because I've finished my shift?" I did not understand this part of the game because it simply "throws you out of the restaurant." This is something that is left unanswered because why would it put you on the street just because you walked over the exit sign? The are many hypotheses that relate to why the game does this, but I am undecided on a final answer.
Overall, this game presented many problems for me at first because I like fast moving games without having to wait. As I became used to the game, on a player's level, I thought that the game was being used to teach us to eat healthly and how it takes time to do things. And yes, this does include walking...Hmmm. I feel a similar reaction to the game as Dr. Jerz has because of the interface problems. I thought that the game would have some issues because it is a new release and has no corrections or feedback yet. I believe that if a newer and more user-friendly verison of this game is released then a lot of these problems may be resolved. Maybe. I think that this game would be great for younger children because it is a teaching tool and also would be fun for them to play.


Why does the game have a very big hand for the pointer and large screens? Is this because the game is focused more as a teaching tool? Or because it is basic for the user to understand?
Did anyone feel that the game did things randomly? For example, when steping over the exit sign it put the character outside. This was interesting...

These are just a few questions that I would be happy to hear comments about.

Gender Roles in Video Games - Presubmission Report

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1) Thesis paragraph:
Video games are a great source of fun because they include simulations, character relationships, and role-playing scenarios. The popular “Tomb Raider” video game uses Lara Croft as the main character and shows how females are equal to males. The video game industry has used male figures as the prominent characters for many years. When studying gender differences in video games it is important to consider stereotypes because of how society demotes one gender over another. For instance, most people consider the video game “Barbie” to be played by girls and “Need for Speed” to be played by guys. By allowing females to be involved within the video game industry it will promote new ideas and games that may not have been thought of before. As a result, video games need to be equal in there representation of gender roles and show that females can make a game just as fun as males.

2) Several direct quotations from the literary source(s) you plan to study:
• “The present study was designed to examine potential differences in the cognitive strategies that girls and boys report they use when they learn to play an unfamiliar video game” (Blumberg 152).
• “As Cassell and Jenkins point out in their introduction to the book, males have tended to control the computer games industry, create games for themselves, and market exclusively to boys” (Jackson 125).
• “A second problem is that explanations for gendered play patterns tend to be linked to broad theories about biologically or psychologically based gender differences” (Hayes 24).
• “I did find considerable gender differences in the kinds of games preferred by girls and boys, as well as class differences in the kinds of games played. The girls and boys in my sample showed similar patterns of interest and involvement in the fantasy-adventure games and the spatial relations games. However, only boys played the sports games with any regularity, and only the two working class boys played urban-violence and paramilitary games (Gailey 86).
• “Theories about gender differences in digital gaming tend to be based on inferences drawn from the types of games that women and men already play, or what they say they would prefer” (Hayes 23).
• This research has demonstrated that female game characters are routinely represented in a narrowly stereotypical manner; for example, as princesses or wise old women in fantasy games, as objects waiting on male rescue or as fetishised subjects of male gaze in first person shooters” (Bryce 246).
• “This investigation works at odds with stereotypical game images of women and against larger assumptions about the body” (Flanagan 368).

2A) Quotations that support your thesis...
• “I did find considerable gender differences in the kinds of games preferred by girls and boys, as well as class differences in the kinds of games played. The girls and boys in my sample showed similar patterns of interest and involvement in the fantasy-adventure games and the spatial relations games. However, only boys played the sports games with any regularity, and only the two working class boys played urban-violence and paramilitary games (Gailey 86).
• “As Cassell and Jenkins point out in their introduction to the book, males have tended to control the computer games industry, create games for themselves, and market exclusively to boys” (Jackson 125).
• “If we want to have [game] titles that reach a diverse audience, our workforce has to reflect that diversity” (Pratt 34).
• This research has demonstrated that female game characters are routinely represented in a narrowly stereotypical manner; for example, as princesses or wise old women in fantasy games, as objects waiting on male rescue or as fetishised subjects of male gaze in first person shooters” (Bryce 246).
• “This investigation works at odds with stereotypical game images of women and against larger assumptions about the body” (Flanagan 368).

2B) Quotations that refute your thesis:
• “Some “female” gaming practices can be attributed to women’s lack of experience with gaming rather than to innate gender-specific preferences” (Hayes 24).
• “The gender difference in time dedicated to game play can be attributed to the fact that boys find digital games much more attractive and conductive to their natural cognitive processing” (Bonanno 16).
• “While we may question the methodologies of commercial research and its market agenda such figures point towards a growing representation of women in computer gaming activities” (Bryce 244).

3) Direct quotations from outside sources:
• “The worst thing about today's games is that they're developed almost exclusively by men” (Kasavin 1).
• “There is no doubt that Tomb Raider marked a significant departure from the typical role of women within popular computer games” (Kennedy 1).
• “The absence of any romantic or sexual intrigue within the game narrative potentially leaves her sexuality open to conjectural appropriation on the part of the players” (Kennedy 2).
• “It could be argued that Lara's femininity, and thus her castratedness, are disavowed through the heavy layering of fetishistic signifiers such as her glasses, her guns, the holster/garter belts, her long swinging hair” (Kennedy 3).

3A) Quotations that support your thesis:
• “There is no doubt that Tomb Raider marked a significant departure from the typical role of women within popular computer games” (Kennedy 1).
• “The worst thing about today's games is that they're developed almost exclusively by men” (Kasavin 1).

3B) Quotations that refute your thesis:
• “It could be argued that Lara's femininity, and thus her castratedness, are disavowed through the heavy layering of fetishistic signifiers such as her glasses, her guns, the holster/garter belts, her long swinging hair” (Kennedy 3).
• “The absence of any romantic or sexual intrigue within the game narrative potentially leaves her sexuality open to conjectural appropriation on the part of the players” (Kennedy 2).

4) A Preliminary conclusion:
As demonstrated through academic articles the use of female characters is limited in video games and shows how racial the industry can be. After analyzing several academic articles including psychology journals and books one can see that video games are focused more towards the male culture. The gaming industry then developed a video game called, “Tomb Raider” that showed how women can be strong and active just like men can be. Gender roles in video games begin to develop when a child is young because of culture stereotypes and can be seen as they grow older. This gender separation is very prevalent with modern video games compared to the beginning of video games which were text-based adventure games.

5) An example of the efficient integration of a brief quotation from an outside source:
• Human psychology is a major factor when playing video games because of how the brain works. Blumberg conducted a research study that, “…was designed to examine potential differences in the cognitive strategies that girls and boys report they use when they learn to play an unfamiliar video game” (Blumberg 152). The study consisted of 104 elementary grade level students and the video game called, Sonic the Hedgehog 2.

6) MLA-style Works Cited list:
Blumberg, Fran C., and Lori M. Sokol.. “Boys' and Girls' Use of Cognitive Strategy When Learning to Play Video Games.” Journal of General Psychology 131.2 (Apr. 2004): 151-158. Academic Search Elite. EBSCO. Seton Hill University, Greensburg, PA. 13 January 2008.
Bonanno, Philip, and P. A. M. Kommers.. “Gender Differences and Styles in the Use of Digital Games.” Educational Psychology 25.1 (Feb. 2005): 13-41. Academic Search Elite. EBSCO. Seton Hill University, Greensburg, PA. 13 January 2008.
Bryce, J. & Rutter, J. “Killing Like a Girl: Gendered Gaming and Girl Gamers’ Visibility”, DigiPlay 3: Leisure Constraints, Entitlement and Access to Technologies of Leisure, University of Central Lancashire, 15th Sept.
Flanagan, Mary. “Next Level, Women’s Digital Activism through Gaming.” Digital Media Revisted. England: London, 2003.
Gailey, Christine Ward. “Mediated Messages: Gender, Class, and Cosmos in Home Video Games.” Journal of Popular Culture 27.1 (Summer 1993): 81-97. Academic Search Elite. EBSCO. Seton Hill University, Greensburg, PA. 14 January 2008.
Hayes, Elisabeth. “Women, Video Gaming & Learning: Beyond Stereotypes.” TechTrends: Linking Research & Practice to Improve Learning 49.5 (Sep. 2005): 23-28. Academic Search Elite. EBSCO. Seton Hill University, Greensburg, PA. 13 January 2008.
Jackson, Kathy Merlock. “From Barbie to Mortal Kombat: Gender and Computer Games (Book).” Journal of American & Comparative Cultures 23.3 (Fall 2000): 125. Academic Search Elite. EBSCO. Seton Hill University, Greensburg, PA. 13 January 2008
Kasavin, Greg. “Samus' Suit Was Made by Men.” GameSpot. 16 Jan. 2008. .
Kennedy, Helen. “Lara Croft: Feminist or Cyberbimbo.” Game Studies. 16 Jan. 2008. .
Pratt, Mary K. “She Got Game.” Computerworld 41.23 04 June 2007: 32-36. Academic Search Elite. EBSCO. Seton Hill University, Greensburg, PA. 13 January 2008.

Procedural Rhetoric and Maintaining Order!

Quote: "While we often think that rules always limit behavior, the imposition of constraints also creates expression" (Bogost 7).

The beginning of "Persuasive Games" has been a very interesting read, but somewhat difficult at the same time. I think that Bogost offers the reader many ideas about procedures and rhetoric. I particularly liked this quote because of how true it is. For example, the rules in video games only make the player be creative and express thereselves by finding alternate ways or correct ways to win the level. I think that Bogost incorporates everything that we have learned so far this semster and prepares us for our research paper. I also found the "Eliza" program to be very interesting because it simply re-formulates the questions that the person inputs. This is all based on procedures and how the program works. I have really enjoyed reading this book so far and look forward to finishing it.

Gender and Class Differences in Video Games - Reflection

After completing the article analysis assignment I thought how interesting gender roles in video games are. The article that I read was called, “Mediated Messages: Gender, Class, and Cosmos in Home Video” and it showed what messages video games can relay. After finding the thesis statement of the article I knew that the article would be categorized into several sections. For example, the first section was gender followed by class and so on.
The article uses an experiment including adults and children and the local video game stores. The experiment only included 21 people which I thought was a small amount for finding class differences. Even by saying that the author finds differences among boys and girls with video games. When searching for the opposing view points I was shocked at how the author used cultural studies and personal opinions as part of the experiment. I think that this is a positive addition to the study because it shows current trends and opinions.
The last important difference was between traditional game reviews and New Games Journalism reviews. The article was driven towards being more like a NGJ review more so than a traditional review because of how personal and detailed it was. The article was 17 pages long and is intended for a sit down and read article. Most traditional game reviews are shorter and consist of only a few pages whereas NGJ reviews are lengthy, detailed, and personal.
Overall, this article made me understand that there are gender differences in video games. Not only did I enjoy reading it, but it will most likely be used in my research paper which is called, “Gender roles in video games.” Now that I have completed the article analysis assignment I feel that I am better prepared for starting my research paper.

The Video Game - "Fatworld"

Claim: The game "Fatworld" contains issuses about weight and managing a good lifestyle, but learning the difficult game elements and slow simulations make the player feel bored, frustrated, and a sense of not putting effort forth.

This game was very basic to me and was not very interactive. As I was playing I thought that the game was slow and did not allow the player to move quickly. My thesis or claim statement expresses how I "see" the game. The long tutorial elements and slow simulations are not something that I want to see in a video game. Juul states, "Rules are designed to be above disucussion in the sense that a specific rule should be sufficiently clear that palyers can agree about how to use it" (Juul 55). I applied this quote to the game because the directions did not seem particularly easy to follow and some of the rules could be challenged. One rule that I thought would make the game better was when your character had to complete the tasks on the menu panel. I thought the game would be similar to "The Sims" in the sense that you could buy a house, buy grocerys, eat what you wanted and much more without having rules or directions.

When I was designing my character it started out with an 80 year old man who was extremely obese. I laughed and changed the age to about 40 and his weight to obese. I began to think that the game seemed very basic and did not challenge me. The controls were frustrating and everything I wanted to do was another button. After about 5 minutes I felt comfortable with the controls, but still felt like the game was not providing enough for me.

Koster's stated, "It's clear that players tend to prefer certain types of games in ways that seem to correspond to their personalities" (Koster 104). I agree with this quote because "Fatworld" did not correspond with my preference of games. I think that this game would be great for younger kids because it would teach values and also how to live a good lifestyle.

Simulated and Life Effort - Reflection

Juul’s book called Half-real was a very informative and interesting read. Brandon Gnesda’s blog entry called, “Juul Half-real” poses some very interesting points and questions that I had not thought about before. Brandon uses the concept of simulating actions in real life with video games. I am proud to say that Brandon incorporated my blog entry into his and mentions some interesting questions.
When first reading through his blog entry I thought that the game controller and real life actions were very different. Brandon stated, “For instance, pressing "X" to swing a bat is by no means a true reflection of how difficult it actually is in real life.” This quote is very true because video games offer an “instant reward.” This concept is very different in real life because it takes effort to swing a bat and more than just a push of the “X” button. This can be compared to my quote that said, “video games are infinite as compared to life which presents deadlines.” The player can swing a bat in a video game forever whereas in real life a human can only swing it so many times until they have no effort left.
Brandon presented some good questions and the first was, “Would we enjoy a game where it took months to build a building in SimCity?” My answer would be “No” because video games give the player the chance to experience everything in instant gameplay mode. This then leads into the next question that said, “Would we play games that reflect the difficulties of real life?” I believe that video game players would not play games that provide real-life time scenarios. Take “SimCity” for example and put real-life time into the game. It would take years to build a complete city because everything would offer difficulties like in real life. The last interesting question was “Are games good the way they are, using the general scope of something to highlight the best parts of an activity?” I think that games are great the way they are because people enjoy playing them and love how video games highlight the best parts of an activity with instant satisfaction.
Brandon’s blog entry made me think of questions that are great to consider with video games. The ability to have instant game play opposed to real-life time is a great advancement because of how quick things can be done. After reading this blog entry, I proposed an interesting question that was “it is better to use a controller with an “X button” or use another form of a controller?” This would be a great research study to see whether video game players prefer a specific controller over another. Brandon’s blog entry was very interesting and made me think of questions that I would not have thought of before reading.

Gender and Class Differences in Video Games (Ex 4: Article Analysis)

1. Peer-reviewed academic article:
• Mediated Messages: Gender, Class, and Cosmos in Home Video Games by Christine Ward Gailey

2. Author’s Main Thesis:
• The aim of the project was to understand how the structure of the games represent ideas about human nature, gender, class, technology, and the general world view presented by a sector of the corporate structure.

3. Evidence that the author uses in order to support the main idea:
• Gailey, “analyze the content of a range of Nintendo and related home video games, trying to figure out what patterns existed in how the games depicted order and chaos, gender relations, social class, ethnicity, and technology (Gailey 82-83).
• Gailey uses a research experiment consisting of nine adults, eight children, and four friends (five girls and seven boys). Gailey observed these members and the video game stores for several days.
• The author presents many personal views about certain video games throughout the article. For example, “When asked about the sports games, most of the girls said…It’s just reflexes and timing—you don’t really have to think while you’re playing them” (Gailey 88).
• Evidence for Order and Chaos: Gailey uses her observation about good, evil, relationships, winning, and influences to support her argument.
• Evidence for Technology: Improve your technology based on the games genre.
• Evidence for Social Class: “Only parents with sons had purchased sports games” (Gailey 85).
• “I did find considerable gender differences in the kinds of games preferred by girls and boys, as well as class differences in the kinds of games played. The girls and boys in my sample showed similar patterns of interest and involvement in the fantasy-adventure games and the spatial relations games. However, only boys played the sports games with any regularity, and only the two working class boys played urban-violence and paramilitary games (Gailey 86).
• Gailey quotes from academic articles, books, and games in order to support her argument.
• Gailey uses Pac-man and Ms. Pac Man as an example that video games are directed towards boys and contain a masculine approach and that women are seen with sexual themes.

4. Alternative and Opposing Ideas:
• Gailey talks about debates in cultural studies as being just like all other dominant values that are presented in society.
• “Whether game playing is considered as having positive or problematic effects, almost all studies of children playing video games have presented these players as absorbing or rejecting—but not interpreting and thereby altering—values embedded in the games and play process” (Gailey 82).
• Gailey uses the children’s opinions about what video games they think boys and girls like to play. There answers were used as a basis for her to disagree or suggest different view points throughout the article. (Gailey 88)
• “In what I call the “urban jungle” street-fighting games, women sometimes appear in minority roles as dangerous gang members whom the her must beat up or kill through the same martial arts techniques used on male enemies” (Gailey 87). This quote shows how females are being looked upon as minorities.

5. Evidence sources that work against the author’s thesis:
• “Price (1985) gives a review of earlier social science research on arcade-type video games. Arcade games, of course, present difference in terms of social play process” (Gailey 93).
• “In the fantasy-odyssey games, for instance, there are no active female characters at all” (Gailey 86). On the other hand Gailey presents the idea that “girls were more likely to play fantasy-adventure and spatial relations games than any other genres” (Gailey 88). This is interesting because even though there were no female characters in the games the girls still liked playing them the most. This works against the author’s thesis because it shows that girls can play video games even if there aren’t any females in the game.
• “Other studies suggest social causation for a skewed interest in computers in general and video games in particular (Temple and Lips 215-226).

6. How does this academic article differ from 6A) a traditional game review, and 6B) New Games Journalism?
6A: This academic article focuses on the messages that video games portray and how it affects the people who play them. A traditional game review is mostly focused towards marketing and selling a game. This article shows that games have many different opinions and roles towards gender, class, and cosmos. This article differs a lot from a traditional game review.

6B: Gailey incorporates a personal research observation that uses adults and children as a focal point. This is much different than a traditional game review because of how personal this research becomes by including personal reactions and game plays from the children. A New Games Journalism article incorporates personal reactions, views, and experiments within the research to show how video games relay message.

This article differs from a traditional game review more than a New Games Journalism review because of the information that is provided. Gailey presents a detailed observation analysis about children and video games. This is important because it shows how the article has developed a main goal and is supporting it with proper evidence. This article is similar to a NGJ review because it is a personal observation, includes game techniques based on gender roles, and provides unique information about video games.

Works Cited

Gailey, Christine Ward. “Mediated Messages: Gender, Class, and Cosmos in Home Video Games.” Journal of Popular Culture 27.1 (Summer 1993): 81-97. Academic Search Elite. EBSCO. Seton Hill University, Greensburg, PA. 14 January 2008.

Character Relationships (Newman) - Reflection

After reading Newman’s article I learned that non-players can have more fun than the actual player. This was very interesting while reading because I never thought about this concept, but it is true. Non-players tend to become very excited with a video game while watching because of the relationships they build with the character. After reading Zach and Ashley’s blog entries I noticed a lot of similarities and learned some new facts that I had not thought about before.
Ashley’s blog entry called, “Workbook thesis” talked about humans relating to the characters and how they become involved in the game. She then states a comparison between text-based games and modern games by saying, “Playing with depersonalized characters feels like it is just a representation of yourself or you are acting like the spaceship or box.” This is true because when you can relate to a character then you can understand the game better and even think of better strategies. It is important to compare IF games with modern video games because of the player-character-relationship that is established throughout the game. This is something that I had not thought about before, but is a great way to understand gaming relationships.
Zach’s blog entry called, “The Myth of the Ergodic Videogame” states how an on-looker can play a game without a joystick. This can be especially seen in simulation games because of the detailed cut scenes and movies that are shown. The on-looker and player can encounter a gaming experience that is more exciting than playing the game. For example, when I was growing up I always watched my brother play video games and would become very involved in the game. This experience would not only generate fun and the desire to play, but also an on-looker character relationship. Zach’s blog entry made me realize how an on-looker can exert effort in the video game without even playing.
After reading Ashley and Zach’s blog entries I noticed how important character relationships and on-looker experiences are. The ability to use an “ergodic” video game concept and apply it to different experiences is important because of how many emotions and relationships are formed. After forming my thesis about Newman I compared cut-scenes and graphics to this idea.

Blog Portfolio 2

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Since Portfolio 1, I have composed 14 blog entries consisting of reflections, in-depth discussions, and papers that have introduced many ideas about the video game world. A previous blog entry called "New Terminology in Video Games" incorporated in Portfolio 1 now lists Brandon's comments and comparison's towards my reactions. My first blog entry for this portfolio focuses on finishing Laurel’s book and is called “What should a video game contain?” and I learned how video games can be derived from movies or books. This blog prompted discussions about virtual reality games and how important they may become in the future. After posting my reflection, “Values in Video Games” Kevin McGinnis posted a comment about video games enforcing values. This is one example that shows interaction between me and another classmate.

My blog entry called “The Role of Women in Video Games” is based on the discussion question about gender and games and shows interaction, in-depth conversations, and coverage of the topic. I presented a thesis about women and how video games present them and then the three day debate and discussion began. The first half of “Half-real” describes games and rules and my blog entry called “What have you learned” explains how I never thought about rules being so important. I had to complete an assignment called “Game Analysis 2” and then I posted it on my blog called “Ex 3: Game Analysis 2.” This prompted a classmate to think about the game Pharaoh as learning and teaching tool.

My next blog called, “Juul's Emergence and Stylization Concept” connects Juul’s definition of emergence and a narrative definition from a literary term book. My reflection called “Video Games and Movies, What a Great Combination! let me think how video games turn into movies or the opposite and I used “Final Fantasy” as an example. I listed links to the trailers on Ashley Farmer’s blog entry called, “Transmedia Culture.” After reading about Newman’s theory I posted a blog called, “What are Ergodic Videogames?” This made me think about non-playing time and “onlookers” in a different way. Darrell posted an early morning comment describing the importance of cut-scenes and movies. Ashley Farmer’s blog entry called “Rules rule the game” made me realize how a classic game model and rules fit into a video game. My reflection blog entry called “The Rules are Pre-Programmed” exhibits this reaction.

The next major project in the class is the research paper and I posted a blog entry incorporating Dr. Jerz’s resources and my initial reactions. My blog entry is called “Research Paper - Gender and Video Games” and links all of the websites and my reactions to this topic. After finishing Juul’s book I found “Time and Projection in Video Games” to be very interesting. This reading made me understand how video games can portray world events in a different meaning by changing the speed of time. My last blog entry so far is called, “Newman and Juul - J-Web Essay #3” and offers my thesis statement about character relationships and the “game world.” All of this information has been preparing me for my research paper on gender in video games.

Newman and Juul - J-Web Essay #3


Thesis: Newman challenges the concept of primary-player-character relationships as being understanding and identifiable, but Juul suggests the idea of characters in a “game world” as unaware of being in a game and people who we know.

With this being said, Newman does not seem to believe that video game relationships can be personal and identifiable. On the other hand, Juul believes that we can relate with the characters by knowing them or because they are real life people in a simulated environment. The difference between these two authors is that characters are either personalized and life-like or depersonalized and non-livings objects in which a video game lets the player decide the relationship. This concept is somewhat difficult to understand, but can be seen within video games. Many video games consist of characters that are in real-life and people who we can relate to and this shows us how primary-character relationships can be formed. When a character is not life-like there is not a character relationship formed, but only a limited amount of emotions.

Time and Projection in Video Games


Quote: Projection means that the player's time and actions are projected onto the game world where they take on a fictional meaning" (Juul 143).

The reason why I picked this quote is because it shows how time and actions in games can be different than the real world. I really liked the game that Juul's picked because "The Sims" is a great example of having the ability to speed up or slow down time with a click of a button. By cicking the time button this could be a form of effort? Just as Juul notes on figure 4.12 (page 144): "Building a power plan in a few seconds." The ability to create a powerplant, road system, or town in just seconds is part of the fictional world. When comparing video game time to real-life time there is a major difference because time in video games is infinite whereas life has deadlines.

Juul also makes a very interesting point about "time and historical places." In a video game the player can create a war scene or build a town in under a few mintues. On the other hand, in real life this may take several hours or years. It is interesting to think about how video games can relate to real life and how quick things can happen. When referring this type of technology to modern day advancements it is important to think about, "What if video games could help humans study events in history?" This is an important question to consider because there are video games for almost anything in today's modern world. Juul makes a lot of interesting points about rules, fiction, and games throughout the book. I really enjoyed reading this book and found it to be very interesting and informative.

Reseach Paper - Gender and Video Games

Hi Class! I began thinking about what should my topic be for my research paper and I thought about my blog entry called, "The Role of Women in Video Games." I was amazed at how much discussion this topic sparked and how important it is when referring to video games. After pondering over the idea I thought I would ask Dr. Jerz's opinion and he thought it would be a great idea. I believe that my topic is going to focus on gender in video games. (Mostly the female role). Dr. Jerz provided me with a couple links that focus on this specific topic.

The first website was called "Women Gamers" and I found a lot of interesting information on it. After looking through some of the forums I came across a title called, "Digital Women Review: Final Fantasy 7 Women." This on-going discussion was important to consider because it shows how the women in the Final Fantasy games are strong and compared it to Lara Croft. This relates to a lot of discussion we have been doing in class. After reading through another website called, "grrlgamer" I thought this is an important topic to investigate because of how many debates and articles it produced. This website listed a forum that showed how video games have sterotypes for specific gender's.

Another website called "Digital Games" provided a lot of articles. The first article I found was called, "From Barbie to Mortal Kombat: Gender and Computer Games." This article is a book review that shows how there are stereotypes in video games. The next article was called, "Women, Video Gaming & Learning: Beyond Stereotypes" and it shows how gender is a "problematic issue in video games." While continuing to research I came across another article called, "She Got Game" that shows how women have contributed to video games.

This topic seems to be a growing argument and is something that would be interesting to explore and learn much more information about. I would welcome any comments, information, or links to any articles or websites that would help me develop the start of my research paper.

The Rules are Pre-Programmed - Reflection

The first half of “Half-real” by Jesper Juul is very informative and allows the reader to learn about topics that are in video games. I thought the most important section was about rules and why video games have them. After reading Ashley Farmer’s blog entry called “Rules rule the game” I learned some important facts that I had not thought about before.
The first important topic that I thought Juul made was about the classic game model. Juul lists six specific items that video games should contain in order to be considered a game. While completing the J-Web exercises I compared the video game “Turok” to these six items. All of these specific items seem to be found within my example and that makes it a video game.
When thinking about the quote that Ashley used I thought, “This is exactly true about rules.” Her quote made me think why video games have rules in the first place and how important they are. Rules are designed to let the player put effort into the game and overcome specific challenges. This can be compared to completing small writing tasks in order to compose a research paper. You must put effort into the prelimary assignments in order to overcome the challenge of writing the final research paper. I never thought about the term “ingenuity” that Ashley used, but it works perfect. The player must be creative in order to overcome the challenges in the video game.
It is then important to consider that the player must try to win because if they don’t then there is no point in playing the video game. Ashley’s blog entry let me think about rules in video games as being productive and important, instead of just hindering the player from wining. The player needs to use their imagination and personal strategies in order to win the game.

What are Ergodic Videogames?


Qoute: "A more fruitful way of conceiving the question is to consider how much time we spend actually in non-trivial action when "playing" a videogame" (Game Studies Website).

This quote is a true statement because a lot of video games consist of beginning commericals and introductions along with after each level media. It is important to think that a lot of video games consist of non-playing time. Do you agree that video games include a lot of sit and watch graphics? I think this is important in a game because after you finish a level you want there to be a so-called "gift" or "reward" for completing the level.

On a personal note, I remember playing StarFox 64 and it was a lot of fun. If I can remember correctly the character was like similiar to a fox? I always thought it was a fun game to play with a lot of graphics.

For example, when your just watching someone play a videogame don't you become so into the game that when the player makes a mistake you say, "Oh darn! Here let me try." A lot of pleasure can develop just by watching someone play the video game because of the interactivity and fun.

Thesis: Although video games offer "onlookers" the pleasure of watching someone play a video game, having fun, and also developing a sequence for winning they suggest that having a lot of movies and graphics can be non-ergodicity.

Does this thesis statement seem true while playing video games while friends or family are watching?

Video Games and Movies, What a Great Combination! - Reflection

After finishing Laurel’s, “Utopian Entrepreneur” I noticed that I had to go back and review what I read several times. I think this is mostly because of the style that she writes in. When reading Ashley Farmer’s blog entry called, “Transmedia Culture” I learned a lot of information about video games and movies. She used the quote about “…the transmedia process has thus far consisted of repurposing content from one medium for another.” I had not noticed a connection while reading before, but since Ashley pin-pointed its meaning I now have.
It is true that everything in today’s world is on the internet in one shape or form. It is amazing how if you want to buy a TV you can just go on the internet, buy one, and then have it shipped to your house (on a side note, this is a great way to save gas). After thinking about the internet and everyday life, I thought about video games and movies and noticed a connection.
I always loved to play the video games called “Final Fantasy” because of how addicting and detailed they were. There were many sequels to the games and they have developed in a phenomenon that thousands of people enjoy to play. After several of the games were released they produced a movie about the game. I remember that I couldn’t wait for it to come to the movie theaters because of how much I liked the games. This is one example that shows how a video game with several sequels can turn into a movie. It is interesting to think that many movies are produced into video games or the other way around.
Ashley’s blog entry let me think about transmedia in a different way than when I was reading the text. I think that it is amazing how the “Final Fantasy” productions used so many forms of technology. For example, they started with a video game that turned into a movie production with computer generated graphics. The use of transmedia has allowed any media to reproduce itself in a different form.

Juul's Emergence and Stylization Concept

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"Emergent narrative tends to be described very loosely as the player's experience of the game, or the stories that the players can tell about the game, or, perhaps, the stories that players can create using the game" (Juul 158-59).

When taking EL 150: Introduction to Literary Studies with Dr. Jerz, he required us to purchase the book called, "Essential Literary Terms" by Sharon Hamilton. This book is great because it offers explanations and exercises for many different terms in the English field. Since the dicussion question was referring to the narrative in a story I thought it would be useful to look up the term. According to Hamilton, "narration refers to the act of telling a story, whether in prose or in verse, and the means by which telling is accomplished" (Hamilton 112).

I noticed that there was a difference between the two terms because emergent narrative is described as being lose and the story depends on the player's game strategy. Whereas narration is a structure where the story is told in prose or verse.

Juul also offers an interesting term called "stylized simulations" which are "developed not just for fidelity to their source domain, but for aesthetic purposes. These are adaptations of elements of the real world" (Juul 172).

The use of stylization is important because it shows how video games contain concepts of the real world.

Thesis: The use of violence in video games can offer the option for humans to want to be copycats or how females in video games suggests how women can be empowering icons in society. When referring the term of stylization to video games, it is important to consider how video games can be a stimulating experience, show the importance of females, and also relate to the art of everyday life.

I believe it is important to consider video games as being "stylized simulations" because of how they relate to life and the art they provide.

Ex 3: Game Analysis 2


Listed below is my paper for this exercise and I would enjoy hearing comments about the game "Pharaoh."

The Egyptian Years of History
It is amazing to think that humans built the pyramids and buildings in Egypt. The computer video game called “Pharaoh” allows the player to re-enact those mind-boggling days in history. It is designed to let the player create a fun and interactive setting that can grow and develop. This game can be compared to a civilized nation such as present day Egypt.
When first playing the game the player has to develop irrigation systems and food supplies for the town, but everything changes when the population increases. The game starts with a basic town, but once more people begin to come then you must produce more food and water. For example, in order to produce wheat you must have workers plant the seeds, tend to them, and harvest them. This takes a lot of man power to complete and when more people come, then the work labor doubles. The game is difficult to sustain the food and water needs for the people, but it is a great adventure along the way.
This game received an ESRB rating of everyone which is important because any age group can play this game. It may be difficult for a young adolescent to understand the concept, but they can learn a lot of information while playing. This game is a teaching tool that shows the player that it is very difficult to manage an entire town of people and meet their needs. In the likelihood that the player does not meet the needs of the people, it is easier to just start over. This is because buildings will begin to get old and fall apart and the town, if not managed properly, will be too hard to save.
After learning the playing strategy of the game it is important to consider the good and bad. One good concept in the game is maintaining a populations needs, but if not successful then the town will turn downhill. Another important goal in the town is to be able to protect your people against enemies and warships. This is a hard task to complete because if you do not conduct the proper war training, then the warriors attacking will destroy the town. There are many factors to the game, but it is understandable that not everyone will agree with me on what is good and bad.
After learning the strategy, concept, and most importantly having fun the player will experience an entirely different view of a computer video game. “Pharaoh” is used to teach how the Egyptians many years ago maintained the land, people, and buildings without technology. Overall, the good in the game outweighs the bad because every time you play you will improve upon your previous mistakes.

What have you learned?

Quote: A game is a rule-based system with a variable and quantifable outcome, where different outcomes are assign different values, the player exerts effort in order to influence the outcome, the player feels emotionally attached to the outcome, and the consequences of the activity are negotiable" (Juul 36).

Doesn't this quote incorporate everything we have learned so far...the answer would be yes! It explains how a game is designed. The first key point is games with rules and some people would argue that a game shouldn't have rules. If a game didn't have rules what would be the point in playing it? The point made is every move or decision you make in the game determines the values and outcomes of it. For example, this idea of making the "correct" choice can be compared to people everyday. Everyone has to make a choice in life and sometimes it is good and sometimes it is bad. Hmmm...a video game is similar to what we (humans) do everyday? When playing a video game the player exerts effort and feels emotionally attached to the outcome especially when you win.

This quote incorporates Espen Aarseth's theory of ergodic because without putting effort into the game it is not fun. So with all of this being said do you agree that games include all of the factors listed in the above quote?

The Role of Women in Video Games


Thesis: Although the game "Tomb Raider" exhibits women with no class, being destructive, and not being motherly it suggests that women have become strong members in society.

My personal background with the game Tomb Raider is limited, but I have played enough of times to understand the concept of the game. After reading the class presentation on Lara Croft, I learned a lot of information about the game. This included the history of Lara Croft, popular feminist arguments, and Croft being good.
The game Tomb Raider uses Lara Croft as a main character who has power and authority. This shows how a woman can do the same things that a man can do and sometimes better. On the other hand, the game describes women as being destructive and dangerous. This is shown by Croft looking like an FBI agent with her gun strap and guns in hands. In addition, Croft wears limited clothing which can show that women have no class (for use of better wording). This negative factor in the game shows that women are people who show their bodies off. My personal opinon is that this is not true! The game uses pornography as a key concept which Zach also stated in his comment.
On a positive note, isn't it more important to examine the game as showing how strong women have become in society. Many years ago, women usually were stay-at-home mom's who cleaned the house, prepared meals for her husband, and tended to the children. Women have come very far and I am proud for that. The game uses a woman instead of a man to show that they can do the same thing that men can. Just think, Croft can do anything in the game. I compare her to Kiefer Southerland in the movie "24" because there both able to do everything for some reason.
I would enjoy to read comments about my thesis statement from classmates and welcome all suggestions.

Values in Video Games - Reflection

I’m going to start off by saying that Kevin McGinnis’s blog entry entitled, “Laurel Part 1” was an excellent read. He incorporated the J-Web questions into his blog and expanded upon them. He presents the first key concept of a culture worker and how important they are to society. After that he lists the values and morals and describes the father as being “wrong in his accusations.” Lastly, he describes why the values are listed and how they apply to certain doctrines today.
Kevin said, “The idea of a culture worker creating positive influencing forms of popular culture, either through music, games, or movement” was interesting when I first read the book. The key concept that Kevin makes is that the culture worker “actually speaks with people.” This is important in order to get an understanding of the people’s needs. Kevin stated, “Instead of a middle aged male telling the world what kind of toys girls wanted, culture workers speak to girls of all walks of life.” This quote was something I had not thought about because it shows how the culture worker uses people’s ideas instead of assuming they want something.
The next concept of values in video games was interesting to read and also what Kevin said about the father who disagreed with Laurel about her values. Kevin listed the policies for human rights such as “Pacem in Terris” or the “U.N.'s Universal Declaration of Human Rights.” I never knew about these doctrines before reading Kevin’s article and found them very suiting for the topic.
My overall comment for Kevin’s blog entry is amazement. I learned so much while reading it and became so involved that I had to write my reflection paper on it. Kevin uses his personal views and incorporates them with the definitions that Laurel provides us. This is an interesting way to put it, but more importantly he uses names of real policies and experiences to expand upon his argument.

How do I get out? - Reflection

When first reading the instructions before playing the game “Shade” I thought it was interesting it talked about light and dark. These are two important features within the game that the player must figure out as they develop clues. After reading Ashley Farmer’s blog entry entitled, “Shade? Interesting” I thought the method of the game is concept.
Ashley talked about finding the right clues and creating the right imagines in order to succeed in the game. I never thought about it before, but just like mapping you must use the details that the game provides. This is very important to consider in order to continue with the game. Ashley stated that, “you must have a bigger perspective of the world” which is true because you must analyze the information that the game provides you. She also talked about people who have an “eye for detail.” This is something that I had not thought about before either, but makes a lot of sense. For instance, if a person in a relationship is able to pin-point detail then they may be able to tell if there significant other is not being truthful.
After reviewing Ashley’s blog entry I was able to understand that concept and detail are very important parts of playing text-based video games. Being able to use your imagination is a key concept, but understanding the information completely is essential. Whether the apartment is light or dark the player must make the right choices and find the right clues.

What should a Video Game contain?


Quote: "Our goal was to explore relationships bewteen landscape, stories, and play" (Laurel 76).

Doesn't this quote seem to explain the purpose of a lot of video games. Just think about the movie industry and how many video games are derived from them. Also take for example "Colossal Cave Adventure" and Dr. Jerzs' adventure in real life. it's amazing how video games incorporate the current wonders of the world. After finishing Utopian Entrepreneur I thought I learned a lot of information. I found the design principles to be very interesting because all of the factors that Laurel presents are not in video games.

What about this quote: "Culture workers will change both the technology and the ethos of computing" (Laurel 101). It seems very true because it is important to include the values of society in video games and use research as means for learning. Everything that Laurel talked about in her book made sense to me and I understood what she meant. There was no technical wording or specific code that had to be looked up, it was just informative and truthful information.
I also really enjoyed reading the section about virtual reality. I think that VR is amazing and how we, the players, have the ability to access it in a video game. Doesn't everyone want to drive a race car or fly a plane? Or anything that can be simulated on a game? I bet the answer is yes! Without virutal reality people wouldn't be able to understand what it is like to do some tasks or jobs. It is amazing how far the video game industry has come over the last several years.

New Terminology with Video Games

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Are video games interactive stories or a system of rules?

Jesper Juul thinks that they are not stories, but I do agree with his claim about games being unique and having a specific vocabulary. I was happy to hear that Game Scholarships began in the literature department.(My major is English Literature). When talking about interactive fiction games I believe that they are computer-assisted storytelling. After reading Koster and Laurel I feel a concentration about what is the purpose of video games? This is a good question that I am not sure of, but I have a few ideas. Koster presents the concept that video games are based on theories and fun whereas Laurel focuses on producing games for the female population. It is interesting that Laurel uses the terms popular culture and culture worker because this refers to productive researchers of society.
Some questions that I have about the article include, Are Koster and Juul's presenting the same idea of video games being fun? With this being said, is a video game a story or a teaching tool? Based on Laurel's viewpoint about video games and Juul's viewpoint that video games are neither stories or system of rules, I feel that video games incorporate all of these factors. Being a college student at a liberal arts school this topic presents many ideas about video games, but shows how they can be interpreted .

Mid-Point Blogging Portfolio


The Blog Portfolio incorporates all of the blogs that I have posted for EL 250, MWG: Video Game Culture and Theory. This brief essay explains everything that I have done up until now in the course and also lists links to the works that “sparked new ideas.”

Before the class started I read the previous syllabus and thought that we would be watching movies. The two movies that I watched were “The Matrix” and “It’s a wonderful life.” After comparing the two movies I never thought about, “Simulations and Movies”, as movies being alternate reality and simulations. After reading the first two assignments I compared “Video Games” with culture, theory, and concepts within this class. My blog entry entitled, “NGJ: There very unique” examines one of the Ten Unmissable Examples of New Games Journalism. In this entry, I learned how important NGJ reviews were and how they are composed.
On the second day of class, I began to read and write “traditional game reviews”, play video games, and also read, “A Theory of Fun for Game Designers” by Raph Koster. After reading “Always black” and “Bow, N*gger” they made me realize that internet conversation, emotion, and games can all be expressed in “An Intellectual Review,” Now, I was able to play Strong Bad’s video games my blog entry entitled, “Computer Animation” talks about how older video games can produce as much fun as modern games. After reading the first half of Koster, “A Theory of Fun” I learned that “Video Games and Fun” is something that is “hardwired in our brains.”
After reading the “History on Video Games” my blog entry entitled, “It's amazing how far technology has come or not...” talks about how the computer and video games are a pair. My blog entry and reflection entitled, “A Conference on Games” connects the conference with Nancy Fry’s blog entry about storytelling and the video game experince. After finishing Koster’s book I noticed how there are “Personality, Emotion, and Character in Games?” My reflection shows “Games, Art, and Fun” are in video games.

IF is one of a kind” because I had never experienced a video game like this before. When playing IF games “Choosing the right words” was very important in learning information. Kevin McGinnis’ blog entry called, "If/if/id = harmony" shows how psychology can be a factor. After watching “Historical Perspective on video games” my blog called, “Culture and Video Games” shows how books, movies, and games are all similar within the past 100 years. The discussion question about “Effort: Work and Fun in Adventure” allowed me to post a blog entry entitled, “New Words for Effort” that taught me how ergodic and fluidity are part of video games.

My “An amazing Conversation” blog describes how a conversation is seen with a text-based game. After reading the Colossal Cave article I thought, “WOW!! Colossal Cave and Games!” which taught me how a game can be “mapped out” in real life. I knew after reading Brandon Gnesda’s blog entry that “We found the cave” because of how different your lense can be after reading the article. My blog called “What an Apartment” lists my experience with the game “Shade,” and shows how it is similar to everyday life and “The Final Death…” is important to consider. Ashley Farmer posted an interesting blog entry about concept and that made me think, "How do I get out?" My reflection called “The Author’s Life” shows how I learned that light and dark are a part of Shade’s game. It was "A True reality” after playing “September 12” and “Madrid” because these games lead me to think “Games and the World” have a lot in common. Th next discussion question was about “Video Games as Art? Roger Ebert says '”No”"> and I immediately posted my blog entry entitled, “Video Games as Art? Some say No?” describing how games can be art.

The next book in the course was “The Utopian Entrepreneur by Laurel” which describes “Becoming Part of the Culture” where everyone succeeds. Kevin McGinnis posted a blog entry called "Laurel Part 1" that made me connect the concepts of the book with everyday life. After finishing the book I realized "What a video game should contain" and Dr. Jerz then posted the daily discussion question about "Narratology and Ludology." These concepts taught me about "New Terminology with Video Games" and why interactivity and rules are in games.
The course has been very educational, interesting, and fun to this point and I suspect it will continue to be. All of my previous entries have been posted on time and have covered all of the assigned readings. I have posted comments and reflections for all of the assigned RRRR sequences as long as there was a blog entry. Some of the classmates refer to my blogs and continue with in-depth discussions. For example, Nancy Fry's blog entry entitled, "History of Video Games" exhibits this. If anyone has any questions about the Mid-Point Blog Portfolio I will be happy to answer them!

Video Games - The introduction from J-Web

The first forum was about Culture and Theory questions and Dr. Jerz stated: As a white male professor, with a stay-at-home wife who homeschools our two kids, what lenses might affect my attitude towards video games (and towards education in general)?

My answer was: A response to Dr. Jerz's lense could be that him and his wife are both education professors. This could affect there attitudes towards video games compared to someone who isn't a teacher. My own lense would be that I am a white male college student who is earning his undergraduate degree in English-Literature with certification in elementary and special education. My environment around me is country land and I live on a farm.

My first comment was by Dr. Jerz which stated: Okay, Derek, your rural environment and your special education focus are part of your world veiw that I don't share, even though we have other things in common. Education is a big theme in the readings we'll be looking at, so I'm hoping that you'll be able to draw on your education training to help provide some insight that your classmates and I woudn't ordinarily get.

My response back was: I am looking forward to gaining information about the education field. I always like when I can relate my education classes with my English classes.

Darrell also stated a comment: Do you feel that because you live on a farm that you would view video games as a less important aspect of life because there is so much physical work that needs to be done on a daily basis on the farm? Or do you look at video games as an escape from the work at the end of the day?

My response back was: Hi Darrell! It's nice to talk to you and thank you for writing on my forum! I think that is one reason because there is always so much work to be done. Especially in the summer time because the fields have to be tended too and maintaining a nice looking farm requires a lot of dedication. On the other hand, I think it's a little bit of both though because I like to play video games at the end of the day when I have finished everything and I don't have a lot on my mind.


The second forum topic was: One of the J-Web exercises asks you to write a few brief essays about your attitude towards video games, such as listing a few things that are more important to you than video games, and things that are less important to you than video games.

My response was: I enjoy playing video games, but there are more important things to me. This would include listening to music, reading sports car magazines, or browsing the internet. These things are fun for me to do when I'm not at college or doing homework. There are things that are less important to me than video games and one of them is watching television because most of the information and media is on the internet. I enjoy watching current DVD's as much as playing video games. On the other hand, computer games fit into my life a little. I play a few games here and there such as "The Sims" or even "Who wants to be a Millionaire." My family and I sometimes all play a video game together depending if its a multi-player or not. One example I used in my essay was Guitar Hero for Playstation 2. Everyone seems to enjoy this game. My grandparents don't seem to enjoy kids or adults playing video games, but I believe that is because they grew up in a different generation and never had the experience of playing a video game. Most of the people close to me have a positive attitude towards video games.

Dr. Jerz commented and stated: What games do you and your family play together? Do you also watch TV together, or enjoy interests such as racing?

Yes, Guitar Hero is quite a phenomenon. Makes you wonder why they didn't do that sort of thing years ago.... what with sports games and now rock concert games, these recent titles aren't so much simulating what it's like to be in a sport or be in a band, they're simulating what it's like to be in a televised event (that includes Millionaire, too).

So it's interesting to me that you've included TV in this analysis.

My response back was: My family and I usually play guitar hero or racing games together. My nephew loves to play guitar hero with me. (He is only 9 years old). My family and I usually watch TV together when we get a chance, but since our lives are so busy we usually watch whatever we want in different rooms. When we have family dinner together we will watch a movie or program on TV after dinner. We enjoy going to the races, derby's, and sporting events too. Overall, we don't watch a lot of TV programs, but usually movies or something like that. I agree that rock concerts and sports games are much more fun to be at, but I never thought of it as simulating what it's like to be in a televised event. I agree though!

These are the introduction forums to the class.

Becoming Part of the Culture

Quote: "In the competitive world of business, entrepreneurship produces winnners and losers; utopianism strives for a world where everyone succeeds and harmony abounds" (Laurel 7).

I thought that this quote was very important to consider because it shows that utopianism is striving to have a world where no one fails, but only succeeds. This may not be life-like because everybody wins and loses sometimes, but it is important to focus on the wining aspect instead of losing. With this being said, culture work comes into play because it shows how research leads to understanding and the values in society.
I really enjoyed reading the first half of Utopian Entrepreneur by Brenda Laurel mostly because of how she talks about topics that are talked about today. The use of violence in video games and how there is more computer games for boys than girls. All of these factors are important to consider because it shows the issues of today.
Oh! and how about the Barbie story...everybody seems to think that Barbie is perfect, but is that true? Just as Laurel noted about the story of the lady who had anorexia it is important to understand that everyone is different. Just as Laurel ended on page 65, "Change the stories and you change how people live."

Video Games as Art? Some say No?


Quote: "...video games represent a loss of those precious hours we have available to make ourselves more cultured, civilized and empathetic" (Discussion Topic: Video Games as Art? Roger Ebert says ''No'')

Some people say that video games are not art, but then some say video games offer everything. It is very important to consider different opinions of other people because of how much information we can learn. Take Roger Ebert's website of Questions and Answers for example. The first set of Q and A is about Chicken little. The questions that people propose are very unqiue because no everyone would think of them.
Now getting back to the actual question of are video games art? Roger presents a great answer about this. He states, "Video games by their nature require player choices, which is the opposite of the strategy of serious film and literature, which requires authorial control." I can agree with him because I think that movies are followed strictly by what the director has to say and video games allow you, the player, to choose what to do next. It is understandable that his sentence can be debated, but it is important to consider it before making a statement.
Many of the famous works of poets such as Shakespeare's, "Hamlet" and Robert Frost's poem entitled, "The Road Not Taken" are so intellectual that it is very difficult to compare them to video games. Some may consider video games more powering than literature or the opposite?
On an ending note, the quote listed at the top of this blog entry offers an opinion that is important to analyze. When playing video games the player does not encounter other humans or become a productive member of society. Many would disagree because when playing video games you enter a world that intrigues the mind and makes you think with great depth. It seems that Roger Ebert's lenses are presented as being separate because he feels video games are one genre and literature and everything else is another. My personal lense is one that is combined because it allows the player to encounter new literature and movie skills while playing video games.
Some questions that I thought would be good to start the discussion could include, Are video games not equal to movies and literature? Or are they? Also, Since Roger Ebert was a film critic is his profession deciding his personal lense about video games? These are some questions that I would be interested in knowing your personal opinions.

Games and the World - Reflection

After reading Brandon Gnesda’s blog entry entitled, “Ex 2: Game Analysis 1” I found a similar connection. The first game called “September 12th” gave the player an option as Brandon stated about “beginning nor end, and that the user could choose to shoot or not.” This was important to consider because every player has to think about what to do in real-life just as they do in the game. If the player shoots then more terrorists seem to develop and if the player does not do anything then the game is idle.
Brandon stated that once you fired a bomb the number of terrorists would multiply. I had not thought about this before, but then thought it is true in real-life. Many people become so called “copy cats” who want to do what other people did. In most cases the outcome is not good, but this can be referred to why the number of terrorists increased.
The second game called “Madrid” was also very interesting because it seems to teach a lesson about peace. Brandon talked about how he fell short of keeping all of the candles lighted. I had never thought of the game as being set-up for the player to lose, but I can understand it now. The message that appears after you lose tells you to keep trying. It is very important for you to lose because it teaches us not to give up when working towards a good cause.
Both of these games were very interesting to play and I had learned a lot by reading Brandon’s blog entry. Overall, it is important to remember that everyone has a chance to help someone whether they are good or bad.

The Author’s Life - Reflection

The article entitled, “Shade” by Douglass was a very interesting dissertation because it gave many in-depth ideas about the game. Brandon's blog entry entitled, "Douglass on Shade" uses many useful ideas about not being able to find the tickets and about how the game resembles the dying protagonist. The ability to continue going back and playing the game was an underlying choice that many people had.
In my blog entry I talk about how lightness and darkness was a key concept in the game based on Douglass’ article. By reading Brandon’s blog I had learned how the game could be a never ending adventure unless using the right words. I had not thought about it this way until reading his sentence that states, “Rather it took a more intuitive route in order to reach the solution.” This is an interesting way to think about winning the game because you must use specific phrases in order to continue in the game.
After reading Brandon’s blog entry I thought this is a very good way to play the game. Every player must use there own specific route in finishing the game. The use of light and dark in the game is also important because it allows the player to learn some history about the author.

We found the Cave - Reflection

After reading the article entitled “Somewhere Nearby Is Colossal Cave” I learned a lot of information not only about the cave, but about the game. It was amazing seeing the real cave with actual pictures after playing the game. This is because you were able to put the pieces of the game with the information provided from the real cave adventure. Brandon Gnesda’s blog entry entitled, Jerz, "Somewhere Nearby Is Colossal Cave" let me think about looking at the game through a lense and also using your preference and experience’s to help you play the game.
The ability to distinguish the difference of your lense before and after reading the article about the real cave adventure is very important. While playing the game without any information I thought this is fun and let it at that. After reading the article I had an entirely different perception about the game. This included the history of the cave, what inspired Crowther to invent a game like this, and being able to look real-life pictures. All of these factors were not thought of until reading the article by Dr. Jerz.
Brandon’s blog entry allowed me to think of the game not only through a mirror, but through a lense. I had not thought about this before and am glad that he mentioned this. It allows the player to think of the game in a different aspect because of knowing the history of the author and game.

The Natural Carving - Reflection

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Interactive Fiction games can be addicting some times because of how detailed some of them are. Galatea allowed the player to use more specific phrases such as “Ask about something” and “Tell about something.” With the ability to use these types of phrases I could continue with a longer conversation. After playing the game for about ten minutes I began to think how long can this continue? Nancy Fry listed some specific questions to ask in the game that I had not thought of.
These questions included her eyes, her fear of the drill, gods, and secrets which I had not thought about during my conversation. After reading her blog entry I began to think what would the game be like with two players. The ability to use two minds in a game like this would be great because I think the conversation time could double. After reading Dr. Jerz’s comment I could not believe that there were 40 endings to this game. This game reminded me of something that could be turned into a movie because of how many options the player has.
Nancy’s blog entry and Dr. Jerz’s comment allowed me to think about different game possibilities. The ability to use two people, creating the game into a movie, and learning the history of Galatea were ideas that I had not thought about before. This blog entry had leaded me to think of how long would it take to complete all 40 endings or come to a satisfying conclusion.

An Amazing Conversation

"Galatea offers a conversation" (Galatea)

Before playing the game I thought, "Wow, we can use more than two words when talking to the game." I thought this was important because it allows the player to learn more information. For example, when I types "A life" I got a detailed response back. It talked about growing up and the the different stages including childhood and adolescence. I then typed "A birth" and I got a response that I became invovled in. It was very interesting how her birth was described based on a carving.
The answers seem to have a psychological twist to them. For example, when I type "A birth" the last paragraph states, "But one night he slept in the corner of the stuidio-- I heard him screaming in his sleep. More loudly than usual. And I forgot that I couldn't move, and I just stepped down and woke him." I thought that this response was very interesting. I think of the last sentence as she stepped down and woke him mentally (as in a dream), but not physically.
It is very amazing how these text based games, especially Galatea, allow the player to create a one-on-one experience because she has a response to almost anything. It reminds me of the character being more human because she has moods, background, and memory.

New words for Effort!

Website entitled, Effort: Work and Fun with ''Adventure"

After learning two new words associated with effort (ergodic and fluidity) I thought how important it was to consider the concepts of work and fun while playing video games. The term fluidity connected with me, especially, because I always get so invovled with a game that I don't want to stop. Just as Leslie stated, "Get your IF juices flowing," is very true because once you started playing the text-based game you wanted to see what was next. I never knew that, "programs were written to run on terminals which would print out reams of folded paper." This is very interesting to me because imagine if you had to wait for your response...it could be overwhelming! With more modern technology, being able to use your keyboard to enter commands is very important for instant satisfaction. Just as the blog is called, "Effort" it is true that in order to get the juices flowing you must put effort forth.
Just as the article states, "you must put effort into the game in order to receive the full effect," is true on all levels. If you don't put any work, effort, or fun into a game (or anything actually)then it's not a good experience.
>Produce fluidity
>You can, if you put effort into the game!
I thought this text game example would be interesting to think of. I have some questions about putting effort into the game though. Can fun be anything that you put effort into? My opinion is that anything can be fun as long as it keeps your attention and your working towards a goal.
Another question...Because text based adventure games require you to type what to do next, do you think it requires intellectual effort or just being able to type the right words?
These are just a few questions that I think will be good to start talking about Effort in video games. It would be great to get a large discussion going about this topic!

A True Reality


After playing the games entitled, "September 12" and "Madrid" I thought isn't it terrible that terrorism is even in games. But then I realized that it is being used to teach us about joining together and stopping these deadly acts. When playing "September 12" I tried to only target the bombs on the terroists, but a larger area would blow up and destroy more. This is similar to the reality of the War on Terror because the men and women of the army have to encounter these types of things everyday. The second game gave me a sense of comfort because it showed how people from all over the world have united and joined together in a candle light ceremony. When lighting the candles I noticed that they would burn out before you could light them all. This shows how people in real life don't stay united when we should.

Do you believe that these games are teaching tools and developed to bring people together? Or is it just a video game that shows the realities of the 21st century?

The Final Death...

Quote: "Shade is a work of light, as a narrative and as a game. As a narrative, it tells a story of enlightenment - in this case, realizing the traveler’s own death and understanding the traveler’s complicity in causing it. As a game, it is a simulation defined by vision and perception" (Douglass 132).

I found this quote very mind-boggling because of the argument between light and dark. I never thought of the game as a world between light and dark or life and death. This is understandable within the apartment because you must stay in the light in order to keep alive. In order to go to the bathroom and bedroom you must first type "hallway" because it is lighted. Just as Douglass notes, the apartment is one entire room. This article was very interesting to read because on page 139 Douglass talks about frustration and how it's hard to find the tickets. This is just like in real-life because when you can't find something you search everywhere until you do. The best part of this game is that we don't know where the tickets are nor can we recall our last events. Its a search from the beginning.
A quick note about art and video games is important to have because the apartment is art in itself. The art of light and dark and also being able to find the tickets is a goal. The only reason why things seem natural to us is because we have had experience with that thing. Just like in "Shade" trying to find the tickets can be a natural event where we could misplace them or lose them. Overall, the art of the game can be in any genre that we enjoy.

What an Apartment!

Text: "Clean"

Response:" The vaccum cleaner won't work usefully in the closet. Come to think of it, as with a hangover, dehydration is probably the problem. Your mouth is dry wool."

This text-based game was very interactive and the responses were very interesting. The example that I listed above explains what happens when you type "clean." I actually started to laugh because it incorporated a hangover within the text (That was funny). This game was created with excellence because I had a hard time finding things to say.
Has anyone found any good words to use? Were you able to leave the apartment?
These are some questions that I would be interested if anyone has any ideas. I had a difficult time finding the specific words to use. For example, when I typed drink water the computer responsed by saying, "Which do you mean, the water from the bathroom sink, the water from the shower, or the water from the kitchen sink." This was very interesting because you can't say the wrong thing because the computer will say, "You can't say any such thing."

Choosing the right words - Reflection

Interactive fiction games are very mind challenging video games because you have to choose the right words. Nancy Fry mentioned in her blog (Interactive Fiction) about what words should she use. This is an important concept that I never thought about until playing the game. I typed, “Walk to the north” at first, but it wouldn’t work so I wrote, “Go north” and that worked. It is very interesting at how particular the text-based game is.
Dr. Jerz posted a website that gives some useful information for communication within these text-based games. Making sure that you use the right type of punctuation is also very important. He also stated in a comment about playing the game with someone else so you can bounce ideas off of each other. I had never thought about using another player for ideas because I didn’t see the multi-player option. This was interesting to me because even though there isn’t that option you can still use another person. It’s like playing single player mode with two people.
This blog entry brought a lot of ideas to mind when playing text adventure video games. It is important to always remember to use the right words in order to continue with the game. Interactive fiction games have there own language which requires you to properly say it.

Beginnings of Video Games - Reflection

The history of video games is more detailed than I had imagined. From hand-held gaming consoles to the N-Gage there are many options when it comes to video games. After reading Nancy Fry’s blog entry entitled, “History of Video Games” I made a connection. She had stated that she really enjoyed watching, “Tennis for Two” and that happened to be my favorite movie of the three too.
Throughout Nancy’s blog entry she proposes the question about what would video games be like in black and white or with limited graphics. These are questions that I had not thought of before because of how advanced video games are now. She stated, “Would people buy black and white games with full graphics?” I believe that if the game was popular then people would buy it because everyone would have it. I think a lot of video game buying is based on demand because if your friend has it, then you will probably want it. She also stated that she owns an Atari which I have never seen in-real life before. Actually for the first time I saw a picture of one when reading the handout on the history of video games.
I thought that Nancy’s blog entry presented a lot of questions that are good to consider about video games. It is important to understand that video games are very different now compared to many years ago because of technology. The “Tennis for Two” video game seems like it would be a lot of fun to play.

WOW!! Colossal Cave and Games!

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Quote: “Adventure” involves reading prose descriptions of the setting, and typing brief commands (i.e. “light lamp”) in order to solve puzzles and collect treasure."

After reading Dr. Jerz's, "Somewhere Nearby Is Colossal Cave" I learned a lot of information not only about the game, but about the real cave. It is very interesting to learn how the video game got the information and details. The source code is very interesting also because it follows the annotated game that we played. I really liked the pictures because it showed how the game evovled. From the forest, to the key, to the gate, to the river and etc. *One particular picture that I found to be amazing were the frozen walls of Orange Stone.
I have a couple questions: Were the other people in the pictures family of your's Dr. Jerz? Was it difficult to compare the parts of the game with the actual cave?
Under the section entitled, Cultural and Commerical Impact I found this sentence fimiliar. "Other entrepreneurs inspired by “Adventure” included Scott Adams (founder of Adventure International), who published the lean but accessible “Adventureland” in 1978." After listening to the Storytelling in Video Games Conference I recongnized Scott Adams name. It is very interesting that he invented the first commerical computer game sold and the game was based on the real cave.
I found the pictures to be very intruging because of how they matched up with what you would type in the game. For example, in the game you would type "take keys" and then in one of the pictures Dr. Jerz is holding the keys.
I really enjoyed reading the article and thought the pictures were great. It was so interesting that this cave was part of the game. It looks like it would have been a wonderful trip!

Games, Art, and Fun - Reflection

After reading Koster’s, “A Theory of Fun for Game Design” I had learned a lot of information about video games, fun, theory, and the art incorporated within them. My blog entry was about video games and everyone having a different personality. I was surprised to see that Nancy had also written about how people have different lives and how everyone likes specific games. Her blog entry was entitled, "Koster (Finish)"
Nancy talked about how important it was for Raph Koster to incorporate music, art, and math into the reading. I agreed with her because it allows everyone to connect with the text. The last sentence in Nancy’s blog was very interesting and something I had not thought about. She stated, “Do computer games cause obesity?” That question can be debatable, but my opinion is that it depends on many circumstances. Depending on how long someone sits at the computer, what they eat, and there lifestyle may have an affect on weight gain. It would be interesting to see if there was any research conducted on this topic.
Nancy presented some interesting points in her blog entry that I had not thought of. I think it is important to consider other ideas such as obesity and computer games. Koster’s, “A Theory of Fun” uses music, art, and other topics when talking about video games. Everyone’s lifestyle’s are different and everyone prefers certain video games over others.

A Conference on Games - Reflection

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I really enjoyed listening to the conference because of the information that it provided. This was the first time that I learned who invented the first computer game commercial. Many parts of the audio were funny and keep my attention throughout. Nancy Fry's blog entry entitled, "Jerz and Adams, "Storytelling in Video Games" made an interesting point about the conference.
She talked about computer story telling and the experience that the player encounters. I never thought of computer story telling in this respect. She stated that the play could use a tablet and create a drawing of the atmosphere which includes the room and game. The player can then list the players and phrases in the game. This type of experience would be very specific and the player could remember the game easier.
Nancy was able to understand this type of story telling because of the example game that she experienced prior to the start of class. I think that it is very important for the player to map out there surroundings when playing including the game experience.

History of Video Games - Reflection

After completing the Historical Perspective on Video Games assignment I learned a lot of information about movies, video games, and their history. I found “The Rise of the Novel” from 1719 with 2003 to be very interesting because of how similar they both were even though there almost 300 years apart. The pictures of the many different movies were important because they showed how similar movies can be over time. For example, “Cast Away,” “The Blue Lagoon,” and “Lost” are all very similar movies based on an island.
Nancy Fry’s blog entry was very interesting because it gave options to viewing and playing video games. She stated, “Should we add "requires a cell phone?” or “requires a GPS?” for “What is a video game?” This is important to consider because cell phones and GPS devices have screens that are capable of playing video games. Another great point that Nancy noted was, “What if a game does not have rules or scores, is it still a game?” This is a debatable question that I think is good to consider when studying video games. This question could be referred to the tennis game which has no rules and is a simple to play.
After reading Nancy’s blog entry I realized that video games have the ability to be played on anything with a screen. I feel that once new technology is developed then video games will be on cell phones and GPS devices. Games don’t always have to have rules and winners in order to be video games. This blog entry has made me realize the many different options that video games can have.

A story in a video game!

After listening to the Brief History of Interactive Fiction I learned a lot of information not only about video games, but about their history.

I never knew that Scott Adams invented the first computer game commerical. I found it amazing that computers only used 16k compared to 1000k today. He had stated that the game only allowed for two word sentences. I really liked this part of the conference because it showed how everyone was having fun with a very basic computer game. Everyone was laughing and having fun and I think this shows how computer games can be a whole family activity (I was even laughing). I really liked learning the history of video games because of how much effort and thought it took to produce each new step. The example of the massive online role-playing game is very funny, but also educational.

Culture and Video Games

I really liked reading the information handout along with the slide show. Listed below are key points that I found very interesting while reading and watching the slideshow.

1. Slide 16 compares, "The Rise of the Novel" from 1719 with 2003. It was amazing to think that both books look alike and consist of pretty much the same information.
2. From slides 19-34 the pictures from the different movies and TV shows show how similar productions can be. For example, "The Blue Lagoon" can be referred to "LOST" because both shows use islands where the people are lost on. "Cast Away" can also be used as a reference too!
3. Another great comaparison was "Batman" from 1986 and 2005. It's true that fighting and moving around is the same, but the computer graphics are greatly improved. I thought what a difference technology can make.

The topics that we are studying can all be seen within the slideshow. They include all art is constrained, realism is a choice, and art presupposes a critical tradition.

I thought it was important to consider Nancy Fry's blog entry (Bullet point #1) because it is true that cell phones are becoming small portable computers. It is amazing that cell phones allow you to browse the internet, text message, talk to people, check email and much more. On the other hand, GPS devices are just as amazing. They have the ability to talk to you and tell you how to get from point A to point B. I never thought of these devices having the option to play video games on until Nancy presented the idea. It is very true that video games will be able to be played on almost anything in the future (as long as it has a screen). I thought this was a great observation.

IF is one of a kind!

"If you're under 38, you're now saying, "Huh?" Text games (or, as some called them, "interactive fiction") were once the most popular electronic games" (Read Game website)

When first reading the article I thought the exact words the quote states. I had never heard about these text or IF games prior to reading and playing one now. I never knew there were so many different kinds of games. After reading the introduction to, "IF: What is it?" I thought this game would be very interesting to play. I was shocked because I never even heard the word "Interactive Fiction" before. The last step was to play the annotated verison of Colossal Cave Adventure. What a new experience it was! I had never played or even seen a game like this before. The first thing I thought about when typing in the game was the movie "LOST." The reason being is because when they are on the island one of the characters finds an underground so called "house" which has supplies, shelter, and a computer. The only thing that they can do on this computer is type in sentences or questions and then after so long they have to type a code in before the alarm goes off. This reminded me of the text adventure game, but I never knew it was called this (until now). Has anyone seen episodes of LOST? or even this particular one when they first find this underground capsule? I think that movies try to incorporate a lot of older technological discoveries such as this text-based computer game.
Now I will talk about how I played the game. First I thought it was somewhat confusing because you have to type what to do and the game responds (I'm glad for the hints). After making it through the forest, the building, and the gate I thought this is a little challenging because what if you didn't know any tips or hints? I can agree with Dr. Jerz when he stated, "I've learned that some people get addicted to this kind of game" because it is true. Once your on your own without any hints it becomes a one-on-one game. I played for about 30 minutes and then decided to stop and write my blog, but I could have stayed on this for a long time.

Personality, Emotion, and Character in Games?


"Games have the capability to sit on the shelf next to all other communications media. They are capable of art. They are capable of portraying the human condition. They are teching tools. They carry socially redeeming content. They elicit emotion" (Koster 184).

This quote explains what games can offer a human. Its true because just think about when your playing a video game. Usually you get invovled within the game to the point that you don't want to put it down. I can definitely agree to that! Koster offers a wide variety of information within his book, "A Theory of Fun for Game Design." The illustration that is shown on page 185 really puts this quote into perspective. The joystick is on the left followed by the movie reel, Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, and then a guitar. If you were to see these items on someone's shelf you would probably think this person likes to play video games, watch movies, read, and play the guitar. I think that this quote pin-points how important video games are compared with all other media.
I'm interested in what the other classmates have to say about this. Would you agree with me? Disagree? Or even offer another intrepretation of this quote? Overall, this book had a lot to offer about the gaming world.

It's amazing how far technology has come or not...

"Ready or not, computers are coming to the people" (Spacewar website)

Isn't this quote very true...It is amazing how advanced technology is compared to many years ago. After reading Dr. Jerz's article on, "History of Games" and then watching the first video entitled, "Maze War" I was shocked! I am amazed at how huge the networked computers and game discs were. I have never seen a game disc that large. It is important to consider the time period (1973) but look how computers and game discs are today. Now, about the game...It was very interesting to me to see that the player had to actually type Maze Run for the game to play. Overall, this game is shows how technology was developing.

Moving onto the next game entitled, "Spacewar." This game would not have attracted my attention compared to "Maze War" or especially "Tennis for Two." Spacewar is approximately 11 years older than "Maze War," but this game reminded me of an early Star Wars game were the spaceship had to maneuver through space and not hit the asteroids.
This next game was my favorite of the three because it kept my attention as the game continued. This was surprising to me because it is the oldest of the three coming in at 1958. This game was called "Tennis for Two" and was not played on a computer, but on a oscilloscope. I never have seen one of these before until now. The most shocking part to me was when I seen the control pad for lauching the tennis ball across the playing field. I agree completely with Dr. Jerz's statement that there was, "No score-keeping, and no way of forcing the players to follow the rules of tennis." Even though this game was so basic without rules or anything, I still found it interesting to watch and I would even play it. I assume it would become uninteresting after a while, but would be fun for the time being.
When I first read the article entitled, "The First Video Game" I thought WOW! When the people picked up and read the Brookhaven Bulletin I imagine that a majority of them were shocked to hear that William Higinbotham may have created the first video game. I know I would have been happy if I had seen this.
Overall, these three earlier games are very different among themselves but similar in the respect that they are games. Many questions were going through my mind while I was reading because of how different the computers were, how large the discs were, and how basic the games were.

NGJ: There very unique

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Quote: "I know. It's going to be tough. That's why we need a plan. Here's the plan: no one attacks anyone but Donny. He'll get frustrated and give up." "Attack him even if he's on your team?" "Especially if he's on your team, because he won't be expecting it. Shoot him and blame fog of war. Faulty communications gear. Poor command and control. Stuff like that. But make sure you shoot him before he gets to any of the fun parts. Got it?" (Shoot Club: Saving Private Donny website)

This new games journalism article was very interesting to me because of how it was structured and similar to a story. The use of a story structure compared to a traditional critic game review is much more interesting and enjoyable to read. The extended quote from the article is very interesting not only because of the structure, but because it is using discouraging video game techniques to help someone. This game review is unlike any others that I have seen because of how life-like it is.
Everyone is trying to tell Donny that war and military is something that is unexpected. They are using a video game which is very interesting also. I think it is important to use a video game to dissuade someone from wanting to go to the army or just to understand that you never know what can happen once being on the battle field. This can be seen with greater detail with this quote, “this is what war is like. It's total chaos. You never know when you're going to get shot or who's going to shoot you. It's all very confusing.” It is important to analyze this quote because it shows how the video game made Donny think about how army life is.
After reading a new games journalism article I experienced a new world of writing that I have never seen or read before. It was written as a story, but used a video game as a focus point for persuading someone. This article was not only an excellent game review, but a new experience for me.

Simulations and Movies

Movies have the ability to focus on certain topics such as simulations and alternate realities. “The Matrix” is a movie that uses computer generated simulations and graphics to fulfill specific scenes. Many of the actions made by the characters are not able to be performed in real life. The use of movies is similar to video games because of the graphics and simulations that are produced. Another movie that I watched was, “It’s a wonderful life” and I noticed how different it is compared to “The Matrix.” The use of alternate reality is prevalent and shows what life would be like without the main character.
An important scene that I noticed in “The Matrix” was when Trinity was in the phone booth. This was so interesting to me because in order to go back to her real body she had to get to a phone. This type of simulation can be seen within the video game also. “It’s a wonderful life” can be used as a contrast to “The Matrix” because there is no computer generated scenes or simulations. The use of alternate reality is very important in the movie because George Bailey encounters his guardian angel Clarence who takes him through time. The use of religion, alternate reality, and real life is used to show what life would be like without George.
I think it is important to watch these two movies because of the difference in movie production, time period, and graphics. “The Matrix” uses simulations and amazing scenes to describe a different world whereas “It’s a wonderful life” uses alternate reality to show how important someone is. These movies can also be compared to the theories of video games.


This picture is from "It's a wonderful life" and shows how important George was to his family

This picture is from "The Matrix" and shows how Trinity uses the phone to get back to her real life

Video Games and Fun

Quote: “The brain is hardwired for facial recognition, just as it is hardwired for language, because faces are incredibly important to how human society works” (Koster 16).

Ralph Koster’s, “A Theory of Fun” is a very educational textbook when studying and learning about the theories of video games. The first five chapters contain a lot of useful information that talks about the educational value, having fun, and playing games. One particular chapter I thought was very interesting was chapter two because it describes how the brain works. I always enjoy reading the psychology side of any issue because it allows you to think in a specific manner.
The quote that I chose was very interesting to me because it describes how the brain and facial features correlate with human society. This can be referred to with video games also because most of the characters have a face and we can relate the faces with authority or enemy figure status. After reading the NGJ and Gamespot review about Metal Gear Solid 2 I was able to make the connection that the brain uses human features to distinguish what and who the person is. I also enjoyed the illustrations on every other page because after you read you were able to study the pictures and connect them with the reading.
I think that this book is very good to study because it allows you to not only learn information about theory, fun and games, but also to think about illustrations and how they connect with the literature. I am excited to finish this book and learn more about games and fun.

Computer Animation

After watching Strong Bad’s short video on video games I thought it was very interesting. He talked about old graphics, 3-D games, text-based adventures, and photo-realistic games. These are all very important to consider because these were the basic video game graphics and formats. After the movie was over I thought the four games were very interesting. The two that I chose to analyze closely were the Secret Collect and the Rhino Feeder.
The Secret Collect was a basic fun game to play, but each level got somewhat harder. Another interesting concept was that there was a timer and you had to get the secret box before the timer was finished. The levels also contained traps and walls and if you ran into the traps then it would start the level over. In addition, if the timer went to zero then the level would also start over. The second game that I chose was Rhino Feeder which I thought was harder to play than Strong Bad Zone or Secret Collect. It was easy to get the food the first time, but once the snakes came then it was harder to get across. I enjoyed playing it because it let you create that sense of fun adrenaline while playing because you wanted to get the food to the rhino. I thought these were good basic games similar to that of the basic Nintendo games.
I thought that Strong Bad used details about the basic games and graphics and was educational to review. I enjoyed playing the games afterwards because it let you experience the games. There is a lot to learn about video games and I believe it is important to learn the basic games and then the advanced ones.

An Intellectual Review

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The new games journalism article entitled, “Bow Nigger” is an intriguing review that incorporates an internet conversation during the game Jedi Outcast 2. The beginning of the article shows racial language being used and then it states, “What to do? I circled around him warily.” This article uses an internet chat with reference and detail to the video game Jedi Outcast 2. This observation shows how different new games journalism is compared to traditional game reviews.
In Shanahan’s article it states, “In chat mode you're powerless, like most other games, your typing fingers can't do much about an assault by a conscienceless typekiller.” This quote shows how they are playing the game and chatting also, but emotions are becoming stronger. In Amer Ajami's traditional game review it states, “Of course, not all the characters you'll meet in Jedi Outcast will be friendly.” This quote explains that the characters in the game are unexpected and unique.
The new games journalism article states, “It means that by avoiding 'bad' behaviour you can demonstrate how 'good' you are.” The article is trying to explain that most of the people are good players, but some are there to criticize and play mean. On the other hand, the Gamespot game review focuses on merely the marketing aspect of Jedi Outcast whereas the NGJ article mentions important game issues that can occur.
There is an important difference between a NGJ review and a traditional review because of the information that is given. The NGJ review focuses on non-obvious claims such as the people who do not play nice and personal experience. The traditional game review is a marketing tool that is designed to sell the game and explain what the game offers.

Test Blog!

First blog entry for EL 250, MWG: Video Game Culture and Theory!

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