Tuesday & Thursday
028 Franklin Center
Kimberly J. Jenkins Chair in
New Technologies & Society
223 Franklin Center
Office hours: MW 1-5pm
ISIS 210. How They Got Game. History and cultural impact of interactive simulations and video games. Evolution of computer and video game design from its beginnings to the present: storytelling, strategy, simulation, sports, 3D first-person games. Cultural, business, and technical perspectives. Insights into design, production, marketing, and socio-cultural impacts of interactive entertainment and communication. Instructors: Lenoir
Week 1: Course intro
- Course Introduction
- Course Overview and Requirements
- Game Play Pole
- Steven Poole, Trigger Happy: Video Games and the Entertainment Revolution, “Resistance is Futile,” pp. 1-14.
- Henry Jenkins, “Art Form for the Digital Age,” MIT Technology Review 1/11/2002.
- Mark Wolf and Bernard Perron, eds., The Video Game Theory Reader, “Introduction,” pp. 11-24.
Selections for podcasts/presentations due
Week 2: Early PC RPG games
- Brad King & John Borland, Dungeons and Dreamers: The Rise of Computer Game Culture from Geek to Chic, pp. 1-84 (pp. 1-22, 23-84).
- JC Herz, Joystick Nation: How Videogames Ate Our Quarters, Won Our Hearts, and Rewired Our Minds, pp. 139-159.
- Steven Poole, Trigger Happy: Video Games and the Entertainment Revolution, pp. 65-111.
- Tim Anderson and Stu Galley, “The History of Zork,” New Zork Times, 1985.
- Rick Adams, “Will Crowther and Don Woods: The Origins of Adventure.”
- D.G. Jerz, “Colossal Cave Adventure.”
Adventure (Online Java Version), Zork (Online Java Version), Ultima IV (PC Download), King's Quest I (PC Download), Oregon Trail (PC Download )
Week 3: Atari and Arcade Games
Pong, Pac-Man, Space invaders, Missile Command, Centipede, Asteroids
Week 4: Early Japanese Influence: Nintendo Sidescrolling
- Chris Kohler, Power-Up: How Japanese Video Games Gave the World an Extra Life, pp. 1-24.
- Chris Kohler, Power-Up: How Japanese Video Games Gave the World an Extra Life, pp. 25-82.
- Henry Jenkins and Mary Fuller, "Nintendo and New World Travel Writing: A Dialogue," in Steven G. Jones (ed.) Cybersociety: Computer-Mediated Communication and Community (Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications, 1995): 57-72.
- Stephen Kline, Nick Dyer-Witheford, and Grieg de Peuter, "Electronic Frontiers: Branding the 'Nintendo Generation', 1985-1990," pp. 109-127.
NES Emulator, Donkey Kong, Mario, Super Mario Brothers, Legend of Zelda
Week 5: Birth of the first person shooter: Wolfenstein, Doom
- Brad King & John Borland, Dungeons and Dreamers: The Rise of Computer Game Culture from Geek to Chic, pp. 87-116.
- JC Herz, Joystick Nation: How Videogames Ate Our Quarters, Won Our Hearts, and Rewired Our Minds, pp. 83-90.
- Stephen Kline, Nick Dyer-Witheford, and Grieg de Peuter, “Mortal Kombats,” Chap. 6, Digital Play: The Interaction of Technology, Culture, and Marketing, pp. 128-150. (pp. 109-150)
Week 6: Narrative, Story and Games
- Janet Murray, “From Game-Story to Cyberdrama,” in Noah Wardrip-Fruin and Pat Harrigan, eds., First Person: New Media as Story, Performance, and Game (MIT Press, 2002), pp. 2-11.
- Ken Perlin, “Can There Be a Form between a Game and a Story?” in Noah Wardrip-Fruin and Pat Harrigan, eds., First Person: New Media as Story, Performance, and Game (MIT Press, 2002), pp. 12-18.
- Gonzalo Frasca, “Ludology Meets Narratology: Similitude and differences between (video)games and narrative.”
- Dominic Arsenault, “When Game Design and Narratives Unite”
- J. Bryce & J. Rutter, "Spectacle of the Deathmatch: Character and Narrative in First Person Shooters" in G. King & T. Krzywinska, eds., ScreenPlay: Cinema/videogames/interfaces, Wallflower Press, 2002. pp. 66-80.
Supplemental Reading for the Brave
- Chris Crawford, Chris Crawford On Game Design (2003), Chapter 11, “Storytelling,” pp. 157-167.
- Chris Crawford, "Flawed Methods for Interactive Storytelling," Interactive Entertainment Design 7 (1993-1994).
- Chris Crawford, Chris Crawford On Interactive Story Telling (New Rider’s Games, 2004), Chapters 1-3, pp. 1-63.
Max Payne, Final Fantasy VII
Recommended outside gameplay: Baldersgate
Fall Break Oct 6-Oct 11, no class Oct 10
Week 7: Media theory, Narrative, Story, Game
- Jay Bolter and Richard Grusin, Remediation: Understanding New Media, pp. 89-103.
- Janet Murray, Hamlet on the Holodeck, pp. 65-94.
- Celia Pearce, “Emergent Authorship: The Next Interactive Revolutio,” Computers and Graphics (Winter, 2002). (html)
- Henry Jenkins, "Game Design as Narrative Architecture," in Pat Harrington and Noah Frup-Waldrop (Eds.) First Person (Cambridge: MIT Press, 2002.
Week 8: MUDS, Ultima Online, Massively Multiplayer Games
- Timothy Burke, “Can A Table Stand On One Leg? Critical and Ludological Thoughts on Star Wars: Galaxies,” Game Studies, Vol. 5, no. 1, October 2005.
- Suellen Adams, “Information Behavior and the Formation and Maintenance of Peer Cultures in Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games: A Case Study of City of Heroes.”
- Amy Jo Kim, “Killers Have More Fun,” Wired, Vol. 6.05, May 1998.
- Amy Jo Kim, “Ultima Online: An Interactive Virtual World with Multiple Personalities,” SIGGRAPH Vol.32 No.2 May 1998.
- BBC World News, 17 February 2005: “Head to Head: Is Online Gaming Bad for You?"
- EverQuest Widows
Recommended Background Reading:
- Brad King & John Borland, Dungeons and Dreamers: The Rise of Computer Game Culture from Geek to Chic, pp. 117-170; 199-228.
World of Warcraft
Week 9: Massively Multiplayer Games: World of Warcraft
World of Warcraft
- Edward Castronova, Synthetic Worlds: The Business and Culture of Online Games, Chapter 2 & Chapter 3.
- Alexander Galloway, Warcraft and Utopia, 1000 Days of Theory
- Nick Yee, The Deadalus Gateway: The Psychology of MMORPGs.
- Virtual Worlds, Virtual Economies with economist Edward Castronova, BusinessWeek Online, May 1, 2006.
- Adam Pasick, Virtual economies attract real-world tax attention, Reuters, Oct 16, 2006.
Recommended Background Reading:
- Crosbie Fitch, Mapping the Future of Multiplayer Games, Foundations, Foundations II, Cyberspace in the 21st Century.
Week 10: From War Games to SIMNET
America’s Army, Counter-Strike
- Fred Hapgood, “Simnet,” Wired, Vol. 5.04, April 1997.
- Rob Riddel, “Doom Goes to War,” Wired, Vol. 5.04.
- Tim Lenoir, "All But War Is Simulation: The Military Entertainment Complex," Configurations, Vol. 8 (2000), pp. 238335.
- Tim Lenoir, "Programming Theaters of War: Gamemakers as Soldiers," in Robert Latham, ed., Bombs and Bandwidth: The Emerging Relationship between IT and Security, New York: New Press, 2003, pp. 175198.
- Hezbollah Produces a Video Game
- Hezbollah’s Special Force
- Ed Halter, “Islamogaming: Looking for Videogames in the Muslim World,” Computer Gaming World, September 2006, No. 266, pp. 38-41. (html)
- Matt Peckham, “Guns and Roses: Antiwar activists take their message online,” Computer Gaming World, September 2006, No. 266, pp. 44-46.
Week 11: Will Wright: From Sims to Spore
SimCity, The Sims, Spore
- JC Herz, Joystick Nation: How Videogames Ate Our Quarters, Won Our Hearts, and Rewired Our Minds, pp. 215-223.
- Stephen Kline, Nick Dyer-Witheford, and Grieg de Peuter, "Sim Capital," Chap. 12, Digital Play: The Interaction of Technology, Culture, and Marketing, pp. 84-108.
- Celia Pearce, “Sims, BattleBots, Cellular Automata, God and Go: A Conversation with Will Wright,” Game Studies, Vol. 2, No.1, July 2002.
- Will Wright, “Gaming is a form of time travel,” Lecture at Stanford, December 16, 2005. (view in IE)
Week 12: Cultural Differences in Gaming
Grand Theft Auto
Guest lecture - Ian Bogust
- Anne Allison, "Portable monsters and commodity cuteness: Pokémon as Japan 's new global power," Postcolonial Studies, Vol. 6, No. 3 (2003): 381-395.
- David Liu, "A Case History of the Success of Dance Dance Revolution in the United States," Student Paper from the HTTG Archive, 2002.
- Michelle Levander, “Where Does Fantasy End,” Time Magazine, June 4, 2001, Vol.157 No.22.
- Brian Bennett, “101 Pixels of Fun,” Time Magazine, June 4, 2001, Vol.157 No.22.
- JC Herz, “The Bandwidth Capital of the World,” Wired, 10.8, August, 2002.
- Caroline Gluck, “South Korea’s Gaming Addicts,” BBC World News, Asia-Pacific, 22 November 2002.
- BBC World News, “South Korean Dies After Games Session,” 10 August 2005.
Nov 16 Games and Politics
- Gonzalo Frasca, “Sim Sin City: some thoughts about Grand Theft Auto 3,” Game Studies, Vol 3, no2, December 2003.
- Play September 12.
- Gonzalo Frasca, "Videogames of the Oppressed: Critical Thinking, Education, Tolerance and Other Trivial Issues," in Noah Wardrip-Fruin and Pat Harrigan, eds., First Person: New Media as Story, Performance, and Game (MIT Press, 2002), pp. 85-94.
- Clive Thompson, “Saving the World, One Video Game at a Time,” New York Times, July 23, 2006.
Thanksgiving Recess Nov 21-Nov 26, no class Nov 21 or Nov 23
Week 13: Gender
Jozie True, Tomb Raider
- Anne Allison, "Sexy Schoolgirls in the Action Fantasy of Sailor Moon," in Timothy J. Craig, ed., Japan Pop!: Inside the World of Japanese Popular Culture (1999).
- Stephen Kline, Nick Dyer-Witheford, and Grieg de Peuter, "Designing Militarized Masculinity," Chap. 11, Digital Play: The Interaction of Technology, Culture, and Marketing,, pp. 246-268.
- Claudia Herbst, "Then and Now: Gender, Code and Literacy," Social Semiotics, Volume 14 Number, 3 (December 2004), pp. 335-348.
- Mary Flanagan, "Hyperbodies, Hyperknowledge: Women in Games, Women in Cyberpunk, and Strategies of Resistance," in Mary Flanagan and Austin Booth, eds.,
Reload: Rethinking Women + Cyberculture. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2002. pp. 425-454.
- Mary Flanagan, "Navigating the Narrative in Space: Gender and Spatiality in Virtual Worlds," Art Journal, Vol 59 no. 3, Fall 2000, pp. 74-85.
- Claudia Herbst,"Shock and Awe: Virtual Females and the Sexing of War," Feminist Media Studies, Vol. 5, No. 3, 2005, pp. 311-324.
- G. Beato, “Girl Games,” Wired, Vol. 5.04, April 1997.
- Janelle Brown, “All-Girl Quake Clans Shake Up Boys’ World,” Wired News, May 2, 1997.
Week 14: Violence
- Brad King & John Borland, Dungeons and Dreamers: The Rise of Computer Game Culture from Geek to Chic, pp. 173-198.
- John L. Sherry, “The effects of Violent Video Games on Aggression: A Meta-Analysis,” Human Communication Research, July 2001, vol. 27, no. 3, pp. 409-431(23). Oxford University Press.
- Craig A. Anderson & Brad J. Bushman, (2001). "Effects of Violent Video Games on Aggressive Behaviour, Aggressive Cognition, Aggressive Affect, Physiological Arousal, and Pro-Social Behaviour: A Meta-Analytic Review of the Scientific Literature," Psychological Science, Vol. 12, No. 5, September 2001.
- Celia Pearce, "Beyond Shoot Your Friends . . . A Call to Arms in the Battle Against Violence," in Digital Illusion: Entertaining the Future with High Technology.
- Gerard Jones, "Violent Media is Good for Kids," in Mother Jones, June 28, 2000.
- Greg Costikyan, "Violence: The Role Playing Game of Egregious and Repulsive Violence," (1999).
- Gret Costikyan, “Games don’t Kill People—Do They?” Salon, June 21, 1999.
- Gonzalo Frasca, "Rethinking Agency and Immersion: videogames as a means of consciousness-raising," SIGGRAPH 2001.
Dec 7 Second Life