Week 6 Blog Prompt

As we reach the final week of the semester, so we find our final blog prompt. And I think it’s time for reflection. I want you to look back on your first blog post, both your own, and those of your peers, and think about how your view of videogames and gaming might have shifted over the past six weeks. Do all the assertions you made then still hold true? Do you have a different view of the role that gaming has played in your life, and the life of those you know? What aspects of gaming do you now think about most prominently.

This is intended to be a reflection, so feel free to take it in any direction it goes.

Thanks for a great semester!


Week 5 Blog Prompt

This week, I want you to think about the representations of gaming that you see in the news media, and also in your own discussions with family and friends about gaming. What sorts of things are discussed or mentioned? How do games get referred to in terms of moral panics such as addiction or violence? Feel free to refer to a news article or video if you have seen one recently which you think will contribute to this discussion.

Week 4 Blog Prompt

Time for the new writing prompt!

This week, I would like you to think about representations of gaming or gamers that you’ve seen in popular culture, specifically fictional ones. You can think about television, books, film, web series, any form of media. I want you to think about the ways in which gaming or gamers are presented; think about the sorts of people they are, whether the text addresses them in a positive or negative way, whether it purely plays into stereotypes or if it is more nuanced, what role games play in other media forms.

Of course, if you can’t think of anything which meets this criteria, you can write about anything you like; this just serves as a prompt. However, if you can think of something, I think it would be good to try writing to this prompt.

Have a good week!

Week 3 Writing Prompt

Hey everyone,

I thought I’d try putting this week’s writing prompt up on the blog.

This week, for something a bit different, I want you to try playing a game. Ideally, you should try one of the games that are on the lists that I’ve provided you (I’ve posted a copy of those with the links included here). Obviously, some of you will be playing some of these games anyway, in order to do your essay assignment, but I think it would be good for all of you to try playing one.

What I want you to reflect on is how the experience of the game works when you first start playing it. Ideally, choose one that you haven’t played before. Think about how the game introduces you to how it operates, not just in teaching you how to play, but also in identifying what matters. Does it hold your hand, or does it leave it up to the player to work things out? What is your individual world-of-concern? How does it make you feel? How much agency do you think you have?

I’d also really recommend that over the week, you read other people’s posts, see what they have to say about the same or similar games, and compare your experiences in the comments and in your own posts. How individual was your experience?

Welcome to Summer School

Hello everyone, and welcome to the new year, and a new Summer School course.

Despite the gorgeous weather outside, I’m actually pretty excited about the next 6 weeks, getting into Videogames, discussing what they’re all about, what we might think about them, why we might think it, and how they might work.

I’ll talk about this blog in the first lecture, discuss what you need to do, and then re-discuss it again in your tutorials (which, be warned, begin this week), but in the mean time, you can get a head start by getting registered for the blog. The way you do that, is by sending an email from your preferred email address to me at mw.stewart@auckland.ac.nz, and I will send you out an invitation. Slightly messy, but it should only need to be done once. It’s a simple process, but you might like to do so as soon as possible, in case you have any technical issues.

See you all tomorrow!