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LECTURE . WHAT Is a GAME? DEFINING OUR OBJECT OF STUDY. 9 876554488321888888888888821888880007654378 9 88888888888888882188888888888888821888888888888 9. An entertaining exhibit. William a. higinbotham (1958). US government nuclear-research facility, Brookhaven National Laboratory.

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LECTURE

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LECTURE

WHAT Is a GAME?

DEFINING OUR OBJECT OF STUDY

98765544883218888888888888218888800076543789888888888888888821888888888888888218888888888889


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An entertaining exhibit

William a. higinbotham (1958)

US government nuclear-research facility,

Brookhaven National Laboratory

I considered the whole idea so obvious that

It never occurred to me to think about a patent


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IT IS one of the strange ironies of human

History, that the games played and developed

Over thousands of years have turned out to fit

The modern digital computer so well

(juul, 2003, p. 44)


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Game of contest

Game of chance

Divine will could be glimpsed through seemingly

Random machinations (Poole, 2000, p.174)


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civilization

Games of strategy seem to have emerged when

Societies increased in complexity to such an

Extent that there was a need for diplomacy

And strategic warfare (sutton-smith)

Mancala

Wari


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Purist, abstract videogames

Alexei pajitnov

pentominoes


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PLAY

games

That which has neither utility nor truth nor

likeness, not yet, In its effects, is harmful,

can best be judged by The criterion of the

charm that is in it, and by the Pleasure it

affords. Such pleasure, entailing as it Does

no appreciable good or ill, is play

(Plato)

Is Furby a videogame? (Aarseth, 2001)


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Paidea

ludus

Roger caillois

Physical or mental activity which hAS NO

IMMEDIATE USEFUL OBJECTIVE, AND WHOSE ONLY

REASON TO BE IS BASED IN THE PLEASURE

EXPERIENCED BY THE PLAYER (FRASCA, 1999)

Activity organized under a system of rules

That defines a victory or a defeat, a gain or

A loss (FRASCA, 1999)


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Ludus are hard-coded within the program: the

Program includes a ludus rule and it will tell

The player is she succeeded or not at the end

Of the session. However, the same mission

Based simulator could also be used for

Paidea: the player could simply not follow

The rule and would just play around with the

Airpolane … it is the player not the designer

Who decides how to use the toy, a game, or

Videogame. The designer must suggest a set

Of rules, but the player always has the final

Decision (frasca, 2001, p.13-14)


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Jean piaget (1951)

unbounded

Rule-based

0-2 years

7+ years

‘Socialisation’

Kinaesthetic games

2-7 years

Symbolic role-play

“who won?”


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Saint-omer (1168)

pilloried

bale (1386)

Eyes out!

Amsterdam (15th century)

Anomic and impoverished precisely because

Games have been torn from their organic place

At the heart of the community and neatly

Cordoned off (Huizinga)


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What are the properties of a game?

How do we interact with them as players?

What is the relationship between play & work?

The game

The player

The world


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games

A free activity standing quite consciously

Outside ‘ordinary’ life as being ‘not serious’

But at the same time absorbing the player

Intensely and utterly … It proceeds within its

Own proper boundaries of time and space

According to fixed rules and in an orderly

Manner (Huizinga, 1950, p.13)


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The magic cricle

“all play moves and has its being within a

Playground marked off beforehand

Materially or ideally, deliberately or as a

Matter of course … the arena, the card-

Table, the magic circle, the temple,

the stage, the screen, the tennis court, the

Court of justice, etc. … are all in form and

Function play-grounds, I.e., forbidden

Spots, isolated, hedged round, hallowed,

Within which special rules obtain. All are

Temporary worlds in within the ordinary

World, dedicated to the performance of

An act apart.”

(johan huizinga, 1955, HOMO LUDENS,

p.10)


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Agôn (competition)

Alea (chance)

Roger caillois (1958)

LES JEUX ET LES HOMMES

mimicry (simulation)

ilinx (vertigo)

IT IS A QUESTION OF SURRENDERING TO A KIND OF

SPASM, SEIZURE, OR SHOCK WHICH DESTROYS

REALITY WITH A SOVEREIGN BRUSQUENESS

(P. 23)


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CONTINGENT COMBINATIONS

chance

vertigo

Entranced by the question of where the ball will

Stop or what card will turn up (P. 73)

fundamental COMBINATIONS

chance

competition

Dominoes, Backgammon & card games


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0

X

X

X

0

0

0

X

X

0

0

?

X

X

X

X

0

X

?

0

X

Game design = designing rules

  • Number of people

  • type of interactions

  • succession of advancement

  • point system

  • game environment (board/field/level/world)

X


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interface

theme

Procedures

‘things to do’

components

‘with tools’

environment

Aki jarvinen (2003)


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Star wars chess


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components

Source of identification

Provide challenges


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environments

Boards/fields (static individual environments)

2) worlds


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(aarseth, 2003)

vagrant

Omni-present

topological

geometrical


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themes


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Jesper juul (2002) The open and the closed

progression

Discover (game as unchartered territory)

(LeBlank)


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Games do have something in common, that we

Can talk about the borders between games and

What is not games, and that it makes sense to

Look at computer games as being the latest

Development in a history of games that spans

Millennia (Juul, 2003, P. 43)


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