A New Issue of Eludamos

A new issue of Eludamos came out a few days ago, and it has some interesting articles (at least for those of us interested in games). In ‘Postcolonial Playgrounds’ Sybille Lammes argues that RTS games serve as post-colonial simulators where the player is exposed to certain elements and consequences of colonial expansion by taking the role of the colonial conquering force. Lammers argues that RTS “should even be conceived as one of the most significant arenas to express the tensions and frictions that are part of the postcolonial culture we live in.”

In their article “Why so serious?” Breuer and Bente make an argument for the use of Serious Games [I yawn at just listening to the term] should be used for education. Here I’d like to comment that while I do agree with using games as instructional tools, a game designed with instruction as the primary goal and fun as a possible, yet unlikely, side-effect are less likely to grasp students’ attention than a game primarily designed to entertain and that has education as a side-effect. Because of this, it is to games like Fallout 3 and World of Warcraft that we must turn to when we want our students to put into perspective the possible political and social implications of modern day warfare or develop teamwork and problem solving skills.

In “The Computer Game as a Somatic Experience”, Smed Nielsen essentially makes an argument that playing computer games is a positive experience whose manifestation is best expressed through Gee’s Player => Character in game notions from ‘Videogames are good for your soul’. He also furthers notions of videogames as art, videogames as cultural artefacts, and other stipulates that are facts already internalized by all gamers and many non-gamers. I won’t remark much on it as you should probably go look at it yourself.

In ‘Discourse Engines for Art Mods’, Poremba argues that game mods, chiefly those for Half Life and Unreal Tournament, are a valid means of artistic expression that allow for open authorship by offering an alternative experience than that originally designed.

I have yet to read Indoor Fireworks: The Pleasures of Digital Game Pyrotechnics, by Niedenthal, or Exploring the Creative Potential of Values Conscious Design: Students’ Experienceswith the Values at Play Curriculum, by Belman and Flanagan, but both of them seem highly interesting essays. I’m sure I’ll have a thing or two to remark on the Curriculum article once I read it.

That being said….

I went through some more hallways, beat up a fal’Cie who wants me to destroy Cocoon in order to bring back The Creator who made humans and fal’Cie, and Raines, who had previously helped me, decided to rebel against the fal’Cie agenda of resurrection of the Creator by killing the party members. So far he’s succeeded five times in killing me. I think I need to level up some more before I can beat him SHIRT this stupid Crystanium system has a level cap.

About Quijano

Johansen Quijano is a professor of English in The University of Texas at Arlington, where he is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in English. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in the Teaching of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Development focusing on TESOL, and a Master’s Degree in English Literature. He has published and presented on a variety of topics including video game studies, popular culture studies, education, teaching methodology, language acquisition, romantic poetry, and victorian literature. His research interests include the above-mentioned topics, narrative, interactivity, simulation, new media in general, and 18th century literature. He also enjoys creative writing (fiction, historical fiction, and poetry), and reading all kinds of epic literary works - from the Epic Poem of Gilgamesh to Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series.

Posted on June 5, 2010, in Video Game Commentary and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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