Games Research Network

Researching analogue and digital games

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Book Review: Horror Video Games edited by Bernard Perron

Horror Video Games: Essays on the Fusion of Fear and Play

Edited by Bernard Perron

McFarland & Co, 2009. ISBN 978-0786441976

As a fan of horror video games, the rush of being low on ammo in Resident Evil 2 is something that academic texts usually don’t live up to. However, Bernard Perron’s edited collection Horror Video Games: Essays on the Fusion of Fear and Play (2009) is about as close as it gets. Perron, the author of Silent Hill: The Terror Engine (2012) and The World of Scary Video Games (2018) as well as the co-editor of The Video Game Theory Reader (2003) and The Video Game Theory Reader 2 (2009), weaves together both academic and industry voices into the first horror reader for Game Studies. We’re fortunate that the first, and as of this writing only, game in town is a real horrorshow. read more

Undergraduate Scholarship: Magic the Gathering

In the academic year 2017-18, our Faculty of Arts and Humanities at Manchester Metropolitan University launched a number of Undergraduate Scholarships. These Scholarships were designed to support research within our faculty by providing funding to second-year students to act as research assistants to members of academic staff. The funding would be for a period of five weeks over the summer, and would therefore be ideal for research projects that would benefit from an intense fixed-term engagement. I am the academic researcher for one of these Undergraduate Scholarships, and I am using the support to look at world-building in Magic the Gathering. read more

The Board Game Book

In a special guest post, games journalist Owen Duffy tells us what on earth possessed him to put together a book about board games, and then launch it on Kickstarter.

When I tell people I’m working on a book about board games, I get a range  of responses. Everything from: “That’s great!,” to: “That sounds like hard work,” to: “That’s nice, sir, but would you like a bag with your shopping?” read more

A Very Gothic LARP

As part of the upcoming Gothic Manchester Festival 2018, colleagues from the GRN will be running a very special live action role-playing event (LARP). “Migrations” – A Special Exhibition from Miskatonic University will take place on Wednesday 1st August and Thursday 2nd August.

From the Old World to the New World and back again – this special exhibition showcases a host of transatlantic treasures, including a selection of artefacts never before released from the Miskatonic University collections. These items present an insight into the role that religion, myth and superstition played in early settler life, many brought to New England from the variety of cultures across the ‘Old World’. We invite you to delve into the past and join Miskatonic’s Professor Waite for a short talk about the provenance of these artefacts, and learn about their transatlantic journey. read more

A Half-baked Cake: Idealised Avatars In An Exergame

The Avatar

In August of last year I wrote a blog advertising my interview study on experiences of play an exercise game with an avatar that looks similar to the player.

Last week I presented some of my findings at a Games Research Network seminar and thought I would summarise the talk in this short blog post

I started the talk by defining the term avatar which has only recently received a thorough explication by Nowak and Fox (2018). In short, it is the representation of a person in digital space. This is not restricted to visual representations, but can be text, sound, and in some cases haptic. For my purposes, I am looking at avatars that specifically look like a person, and in particular, videogame characters. read more

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