Games Research Network

Researching analogue and digital games

Author: jjlean (page 1 of 2)

Book Review: A Play of Bodies: How We Perceive Videogames

A Play of Bodies: How We Perceive Videogames

By Brendan Keogh

MIT Press, 2018. ISBN 9780262037631

The cult comedy videogames site Old Man Murray developed an innovative and completely objective ‘time to crate’ review system, whereby games would be assessed on the amount of time elapsed between the start of the game and the first crate that the player sees. Often (in the late 1990s and early 2000s) this would be a matter of seconds, leading to some incredibly low scoring reviews. I sometimes feel that a similar system might be required for games studies books; often you can go into a title knowing that it’s going to mention Rez, Proteus, and the Psycho Mantis fight from Metal Gear Solid. It’s just a matter of when rather than if. When I flicked through Brendan Keogh’s new book A Play of Bodies: How We Perceive Videogames (2018) and saw these titles mentioned again, I got a horrible feeling of déjà vu; however, the approach that Keogh takes to even the most ubiquitously discussed games is so refreshing that I quickly abandoned any preconceptions as to where the book would take me. read more

Unhappy Families: using tabletop games as a technology to understand play in education

Research in Learning Technology has just published an open-access paper by Sam Illingworth, Paul Wake and me on the use of tabletop games as a learning technology. You can find it here.

In our article, we use Keith Baker’s Gloom to explore the nature of games and play in education, comparing the physical, collaborative and adaptable aspects of tabletop games to their digital counterparts, and arguing that tabletop games should be considered as a complementary technology to digital games. read more

‘Eat Who I Eat’: Assassin’s Creed Discovery Tour

Assassin's Creed Origins

I am a (not uncritical) fan of historical murder-simulation franchise Assassin’s Creed, and I’ve played pretty much every major entry in the series since it began, often gritting my teeth at the bad plot and violence to explore the worlds of Renaissance Italy, Victorian London and Revolutionary Paris. I’m also an educationalist and former history teacher, so when Assassin’s Creed Discovery Tour: Ancient Egypt was announced I was intrigued by the concept of learning history through playing what is usually a blockbuster game. The first thing that came into my head was this joke from the classic Simpsons episode ‘Marge vs The Monorail’, when Springfield Elementary School’s budget looks to be getting a huge boost: read more

Call for Papers: Playful Learning 2018

Playful Learning is looking for submissions in all areas relating to playful learning in adult education including – but not limited to – higher and further education, playful workplaces, and lifelong learning.

Playful Learning is pitched at the intersection of learning and play for adults. Playful in approach and outlook, yet underpinned by robust research and working practices, we provide a space where teachers, researchers and students can play, learn and think together. A space to meet other playful people and be inspired by talks, workshops, activities and events. Based in the heart of Manchester, we also explore some of the city’s playful spaces with evening activities continuing the fun and conversations after the formal programme ends. read more

Event: Northwest Postgraduate Games Research Networking

Wednesday, 21 Feb 2018, 13:30 -16:00

MMU Union, Meeting Room 8

The Games Research Network is excited to be hosting its first meeting for postgraduates researching games and play.

This event is intended to lay the foundation for a network of postgraduate students and post-docs from across disciplines, who are working on (or have an interest in) digital games, board/tabletop games, and play. We’re inviting researchers from universities in the north-west of England and beyond to take part. read more

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