Video Games in a Culture of Convergence

Video Games in a Culture of Convergence

Written by Jens Kjeldgaard-Christiansen:

This post argues that the modern video game bears a unique affinity to contemporary convergence culture. Recognizing this affinity will improve our understanding of the video game as well as the media culture framing it. The post opens by discussing Henry Jenkins’ conception of convergence culture and by locating the video game in this dynamic media economy. It moves on to present three arguments supporting the main claims above. First, the video game is a kind of meta-medium comprising other, convergent media. Conceptualizing it as such will help theorists go beyond reductionist perspectives on what the video game is and does. Second, the modern video game allows for an unprecedented degree of transmedia coordination through the implementation of downloadable content. Third, transmedia storytelling is increasingly explored in video games. The medium channels trends in convergence culture whereby audiences traverse storyworlds on multiple platforms.

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Do we become more morally sensitive by acting badly in video games?

Do we become more morally sensitive by acting badly in video games?

In previous blog posts, I wrote about whether video games make players more violent, and also Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, which created a feeling of guilt during game-play. In this post I look at a research paper that connects these two by looking at how video games elicit guilt and thereby salience towards care and fairness.

decisions

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On empathy, games and evolution – Star Wars (KOTOR)

On empathy, games and evolution – Star Wars (KOTOR)

This post is not going to be exclusively about Star Wars KOTOR, but it is linked to my previous post on the game and my experience with the game. In that previous post I talked about how I felt bad playing it because I made choices that hurt others, in quite an evident way. In other words, the game invoked empathy for some of the other characters. At the same time I was the cause of these characters pain (which was what caused my empathy), so imagine the emotional toil of going through that! Good thing it was only a game.

nli_empathy_dice_game_experience

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