Interested in Left 4 Dead 1 or 2? Get it while its cheap

As discussed here: http://kotaku.com/5656397/the-sacrifice-is-out-and-left-4-dead-is-ridicu...

Left 4 Dead is being steeply discounted to go along with new free DLC that Valve is putting out today for 1 and 2.

Investigating (or Understanding) Procedural Rhetoric

I’m still grappling with Bogost’s concepts of unit operations and procedural rhetoric, though I think I agree with his general attempt to try to explain how videogames differ from static media (oral, visual, or textual) in terms of how they enact rhetoric or persuasion.

Unit Operations Prezi

Just in case you want to review this, here's the link to the prezi...

http://prezi.com/giryl7isb3yk/unit-operations/

This Space for Rent

My post that should populate this space will come later. Due to a dog-related emergency this weekend that involved going to the Emergency Vet a few times, I'm behind on reading/posting.

Ludology v Narratology

We’ve now read about the ludology versus narratology debate from both Juul and Bogost. The debate is one of the first in the game studies field, helping the burgeoning (dare I say it?) discipline define its boundaries. Some of my earliest master’s scholarship dealt with the argument over whether games should be theorized as games or as stories, and I’ve found Noah Wardrip-Fruin’s First Person series (First Person; Second Person; Third Person) of great value in understanding both sides.

Bogost pwnd me; plz snd hlp

I'll just admit up front that Unit Operations is the kind of book I need to read twice before I get it.

That said, I think Bogost's point is that video games need criticism, and that criticism needs to be accessible to and coming from both humanists and technologists. Unit Operations is his suggestion for how to go about creating such a method: "My intention is to produce an approach to criticism for procedural artifacts like videogames that can be put to use by humanists and technologists alike" (xv).

Living Our Decisions: Who holds the power in game-play decision-making?

“This is the unique power of video games as a medium. They ask us to live our decisions.”

I first heard the words above in the online Extra Credit video-episode about Mass Effect 2. The video discusses the game’s ability to stimulate deeply philosophical reflections (and actions) from the player. Sam included a link to this video on her blog (which is where I found it), reflecting on the interesting connections the video makes between Mass Effect 2 and the Bible.

Field Notes 4: Disillusionment

WoW is the only MMO I've ever played, along with like two hours of a free-to-play WoW knockoff called Runes of Magic.
I just spent 15 minutes playing LOTRO. I am disillusioned. It is like WoW in LOTR clothes! The UI is essentially the same and game mechanics appear to work more or less the same (tab to target, sparkly dead things means you can loot, click through the inane quest text without reading it to get to the grind, etc.) I dunno. I guess I was expecting something...different.

Fable III's voice actors on...well, everything.

http://kotaku.com/5649908/the-stars-shine-bright-in-fable-iii

Considering our recent talks about story and narratology in-game, here's some of the famous voices lending themselves to characters in Fable III. Simon Pegg does a good job of hitting the heart of many of our discussions, but the mix of perspectives is pretty neat to see.

It also pretty much a commercial for Fable III, though. So watch out if you weren't sure if you wanted the game or not. :D

After Frustrations in Second Life, Colleges Look to New Virtual Worlds--article from Chronicle of Higher Ed

http://chronicle.com/article/After-Frustrations-in-Second/64137/

I found these quotes particularly telling...

"Indeed, a recent survey by the Pew Internet & American Life Project found that only 4 percent of American adults spend time in virtual worlds.

But that same survey shows another telling statistic. Almost 40 percent of adults own video-game consoles, where players explore fictional 3-D spaces."

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