Friday, July 22, 2011

Social games

Want to come up to speed fast on all those social games you don't have time to play? Mia Consalvo's recent 2011 Foundations of Digital Games paper "Using your friends: Social mechanics in social games" will do the trick. As Mia said to me at FDG, "I played these games so you don't have to" :P As per usual with Mia, the paper is excellently written, packed with content, satisfyingly concluded with useful take-aways. The FDG Proceedings do not yet seem to be available online, so I will provide the link when they are.

A Hidden Gem

Here is one of my absolute favoritist video gaming papers. It's been hidden away in an obscure publication and is now reprinted in a not much less obscure publication, a museum catalog no less. This work of which I speak is Celia Pearce's "Games as Art: The Aesthetics of Play." It's wonderfully written, includes great pix, and will make you wonder why we academics don't bestir ourselves to produce pleasing and provocative think pieces like this more often. Props to Celia.

Korea's Online Gaming Empire

If you have not read Dal Yong Jin's Korea's Online Gaming Empire, I can recommend it as a uniquely lucid discussion of the economics and culture of video gaming. It happens to be about Korea, which is fascinating in itself, but Jin goes beyond regional study to examine how video gaming permeates society and how capitalism drives culture. It's just a swell book. I'll be using it in my Fall Quarter course on Games and Society. The chapter on professional video gamers is poignant and not to be missed.