Tag Archives: games

Game Changers: Toys

Nintendo Game and Watch with Game and Watch man themed Amiibo

Research question:

How might the study of toys help the designer of games in the postdigital era*? Discuss with reference to your own toy culture and to new and emerging technologies.

* postdigital culture: constituted by the physical, material and embodied as well as the digital and the virtual.

Suggested reading: 

Allison, Anne 2006. Millenial Monsters: Japanese toys and the global imagination. University of California Press.

Bak, Meredith A. 2016. Building blocks of the imagination: children, creativity, and the limits of Disney Infinity. Velvet Light Trap, no.78. 53-64. https://muse.jhu.edu/article/628735

Fleming, Dan 1996. Powerplay: children, toys and popular culture. Manchester: Manchester University Press. [copy in WSA library]

Giddings, Seth 2014. Gameworlds: virtual media and children’s everyday play. New York: Bloomsbury. Open Access here. Or extracts on toys and materiality here.

Giddings, Seth 2014. Bright bricks, dark play: on the impossibility of studying LEGO, in Mark J.P. Wolf (ed.) LEGO Studies: examining the building blocks of a transmedial phenomenon. New York: Routledge. http://www.microethology.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/Bright-bricks-dark-play-draft.pdf

Giddings, Seth  (2019) ‘Toying with the singularity: AI, automata and imagination in play with robots and virtual pets’, in Giovanna Mascheroni & Donell Holloway (eds) The Internet of Toys: practices, affordances and the political economy of children’s smart play. Palgrave Macmillan. Link.

Hills, Matt . LEGO Dimensions meets Dr Who: transbranding and new dimensions of transmedia storytelling? Icono 14(1): 8-29. https://dialnet.unirioja.es/descarga/articulo/5334104.pdf 

Kline, Stephen 1993 Out of the Garden: toys, TV, and children’s culture in the age of marketing. New York: Verso. [copy in WSA library]

Lauwaert, Maaike 2009. The Place of Play: toys and digital cultures. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. Open Access here.

Nørgård, Rikke Toft & Toft-Nielsen, Claus 2014. Gandalf on the Death Star: levels of seriality between bricks, bits and blockbusters. Eludamos: journal for computer game culture 8(1): 171-198. https://www.eludamos.org/index.php/eludamos/article/view/vol8no1-11

Sicart, Miguel 2014. Play Matters. Cambridge MA: MIT Press [chapter on toys – e-book in library]

Sutton-Smith, Brian (1986) Toys as Culture. New York: Psychology Press. [copy in WSA library]

Tyni, Heikki, Kultima, Annakaisa, Kankainen, Ville & Mayra, Frans 2016 Hybrid Playful Experiences: playing between material and digital. Game Research Lab, University of Tampere. https://trepo.tuni.fi/bitstream/handle/10024/98900/hybrid_playful_experiences_2016.pdf

Wolf, Mark J.P. (ed.) 2014. LEGO Studies: examining the building blocks of a transmedial phenomenon. New York: Routledge. [e-book in library]




Game Changers: AI and animals

Guest talk to first year Game Design and Art students on the Game Changers module. Set research question and suggested reading below.

Research Question:
What features of videogames might shape the future of AI or robotics? Explore this question through the analysis of a particular game mechanic or type of game character.

Suggested reading:
Giddings, Seth (2020) ‘The achievement of animals: an ethology of artificial intelligence in videogames’, in Marcus Spöhrer & Harald Waldrich (eds) Einspielungen: processes and situations of digital games Springer, pp.115-140. Online version here.
Johnson, Robin (2014) ‘Artificial Intelligence’, in Mark J.P. Wolf (ed.) The Routledge Handbook to Video Game Studies New York: Routledge, pp. 10-18
Moss, Richard (2016) ‘7 examples of game AI that every developer should study’
Sandry, Eleanor (2015) Robots and Communication Palgrave Macmillan
Thompson, Tommy (2020) ‘Exploring the AI of Command and Conquer‘, Gamasutra https://gamasutra.com/blogs/TommyThompson/20200730/367192/Exploring_the_AI_of_Command__Conquer.php
Togelius, Julian (2019) Playing Smart: on games, intelligence, and artificial intelligence Cambridge MA: MIT Press
Wanick, Vanissa (2017) ‘The era of AI design and what it means after all’ http://www.vanissawanick.com/the-era-of-ai-design-and-what-does-it-mean-after-all/