Computer Games and New Media Cultures


A Handbook of Digital Games Studies

Fromme, Johannes; Unger, Alexander (Eds.)

2012, 2012, VIII, 691 p. 99 illus.


ISBN 978-94-007-2776-2

Due: July 31, 2012


  • One of the few interdisciplinary handbooks of Digital Game Studies
  • Strong focus on social, cultural and educational dimensions
  • Including papers from a number of renowned international researchers (e.g. from the US, Canada, the UK)
  • Many of the contributors are in a key position in universities and other institutions. They are engaged in the field of Digital Game Studies and will be excellent multipliers (Tanya Krzywinska, e.g., has been the president of DIGRA, the Digital Games Research Association, until 2009)
  • The first handbook in English with significant participation of German researchers

Digital gaming is today a significant economic phenomenon as well as being an intrinsic part of a convergent media culture in postmodern societies. Its ubiquity, as well as the sheer volume of hours young people spend gaming, should make it ripe for urgent academic enquiry, yet the subject was a research backwater until the turn of the millennium. Even today, as tens of millions of young people spend their waking hours manipulating avatars and gaming characters on computer screens, the subject is still treated with scepticism in some academic circles. This handbook aims to reflect the relevance and value of studying digital games, now the subject of a growing number of studies, surveys, conferences and publications.

As an overview of the current state of research into digital gaming, the 42 papers included in this handbook focus on the social and cultural relevance of gaming. In doing so, they provide an alternative perspective to one-dimensional studies of gaming, whose agendas do not include cultural factors. The contributions, which range from theoretical approaches to empirical studies, cover various topics including analyses of games themselves, the player-game interaction, and the social context of gaming. In addition, the educational aspects of games and gaming are treated in a discrete section. With material on non-commercial gaming trends such as ‘modding’, and a multinational group of authors from eleven nations, the handbook is a vital publication demonstrating that new media cultures are far more complex and diverse than commonly assumed in a debate dominated by concerns over violent content.

Content Level » Research

Keywords » World of Warcraft – computer games – digital game studies – digital games – game analysis – game and player cultures – game cultures – game studies – games and learning – media education – online games – popular culture – video games

Related subjects » Education & Language – General Issues – Personality & Social Psychology – Social Sciences

Table of contents

1 Johannes Fromme and Alexander Unger: Computer Games and Digital Game Cultures – An Introduction.- Part I: Computer Games and Game Analysis.- 2 Stephan Günzel: The Mediality of Computer Games.- 3 Connie Veugen: Computer Games as a Comparative Medium: A Few Cautionary Remarks.- 4 Felix Raczkowski: “And what do you play?” A few Considerations Concerning a Genre Theory of Games.- 5 Serjoscha Wiemer: Interface Analysis: Notes on the ‘Scopic Regime’ of Strategic Action in Real-Time Strategy Games.- 6 Daniel Martin Feige:
Computer Games as Works of Art.- 7 Paolo Ruffino: A Theory of Non-Existent Video Games: Semiotic and Video Game Theory.- 8 Rolf F. Nohr: Free Market Economy and Dino-Crisis: The Production and Circulation of Knowledge in Strategy Games.- 9 Tanya Krzywinska: The Strange Case of the Misappearance of Sex in Videogames.- 10 Michael Nitsche: Growing Game Worlds.- 11 Caja Thimm: Virtual Worlds: Game or Virtual Society?.- Part II: The Player–Game Relation.- 12 Richard A. Bartle: MMO Morality.- 13 Dominik Härig: Inside and Outside the Game.- 14 Souvik Mukherjee: Egoshooting in Chernobyl: Identity and Subject(s) in the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Games.- 15 Katharina Stephenson: Personality Development through Immersion into Intermediate Areas of Digital Role Playing Games.- 16 Regina Friess: Symbolic Interaction in Digital Games: Theoretical Reflections on Dimensions of Meaning Construction in Digital Gameplay.- 17 Betty Li Meldgaard: Playing by the Visual Rules:
An Ecological Approach to Perception and Videogames.- 18 Daniel Pietschmann, Georg Valtin and Peter Ohler: The Effect of Authentic Input Devices on Computer Game Immersion.- Part III: Users, Uses and Social Contexts of Computer Games.- 19 Dorothee M. Meister, Jörg Müller-Lietzkow, Eckhard Burkatzki and Sonja Kröger: Digital Games in the Context of Adolescent Media Behavior.- 20 Jan Keilhauer: Online Games: Modern Media Worlds of Young People.- 21 Steve Dahlskog: Playing Together: The Player’s Repertoire, an Obstacle to Learning.- 22 Sven Jöckel and Leyla Dogruel: The Right Game: Video Game Choice of Children and Adolescents.- 23 Christopher Blake and Christoph Klimmt: The Challenge of Measuring the Use of Computer Games.- 24 Mutlu Binark and Günseli Bayraktutan-Sütcü: A Critical Interpretation of a new ‘Creative Industry’ in Turkey: Game Studios and the Production of a Value Chain.– Part IV: Game and Player Cultures.- 25 Elke Hemminger and Gareth Schott: Mergence of Spaces: MMORPG User-Practice and Everyday Life.- 26 Diane Carr: Interpretation, Conflict and Instruction in Online Multiplayer Games: Lessons from Warsong Gulch.- 27 Malin Sveningsson: “Pity there’s so few girls!” Attitudes to Female Participation in a Swedish Gaming Context.- 28 Jutta Zaremba: The Gender-Offensive: Female Gaming Cultures between Shooters and Marketing.- 29 Judith Ackermann: Playing Computer Games as Social Interaction: An Analysis of LAN-Parties.- 30 Tanja Adamus: Playing Computer Games as Electronic Sport: In Search of a Theoretical Framing for a New Research Field.- 31 Lisbeth FrølundeMachinima Filmmaking as Culture in Practice: Dialogical Processes of Remix.- 32 Alexander Unger: Modding as Part of Game Culture.- 33 Jeffrey Wimmer: Digital Game Culture(s) as Prototype(s) of Mediatization and Commercialization of Society: The World Cyber Games 2008 in Cologne as an Example.- Part V: Educational Approaches and Learning.- 34 Michael T. Giang, Yasmin B. Kafai, Deborah A. Fields and Kristin A. Searle: Social Interactions in Virtual Worlds: Patterns and Profiles of Tween Relationship Play.- 35 Karsten Wolf: The Instructional Design and Motivational Mechanics of World of Warcraft.- 36 Konstantin Mitgutsch: Learning Through Play – a Delicate Matter: Experience-based Recursive Learning in Computer Games.- 37 Jennifer Jenson, Suzanne de Castell, Nicholas Taylor, Milena Droumeva and Stephanie Fisher: Learning Instruments: Baroque Music Gets Game.- 38 Eric Klopfer and Ravi Purushotma: Using Simulations as a Starting Point for Constructing Meaningful Learning Games.- 39 Matthias Bopp:
School Related Computer Game Pedagogy: Core Subjects and Tasks.- 40 Danny Kringiel: Learning to Play: Video Game Literacy in the Classroom.- 41 Johannes Fromme: Digital Games and Media Education in the Classroom: Some Starting Points, Challenges and Perspectives.- 42 Jose P. Zagal: Why a Game Canon for Game Studies Education is Wrong.

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