Gaming posts (PLURAL!) * due on 11/13/14

Remember – we won’t be meeting as a class this Thursday, 11/13 and because of this, you’ll be required to make multiple posts, including at least ONE during class time (between 1:10 and 2:25 pm).  I know the time stamp settings on WordPress are messed up – do not worry about that.  I receive post alerts that are stamped with the correct time. The post that you make during class time will count as your attendance for 11/13.

The goal here is a conversation – commenting on each other’s comments and having a substantive discussion about gaming.  Respond thoughtfully to each others’ posts – just as you would respond to each others’ comments in class.

We’ve been talking about games and “real life” – how gaming might impact our view of the world, our behavior, even (through avatars and agents) how we see ourselves.  We’ve discussed whether gaming is addictive and the possible pros and cons of gaming as a hobby.

We’ve also talked about gaming demographics (including the surprising statistic that the gender split is nearly 50/50) and the economic impact of video games – remember that it is now two and a half times the size of the Hollywood film industry: the games industry generated around $31 billion in 2011 (that was the last year I could get accurate, consistently cited numbers on).

The gaming industry trade conferences – which used to ONLY be attended by people who actually worked in the industry, now have outrageous attendance.  E3 (the Electronic Entertainment Expo, held yearly in Los Angeles) had nearly 49,000 attendees this year. PAX (The Penny Arcade Expo, created by the creators of the popular online comic strip) had over 70,000. gamescon in Germany had 335,000.

Since the Dawn of Games (we’ll mark that spot with 1972’s Pong, which was the first popular, widely played video game), we have an industry that’s exploded in popularity and impact, worldwide, eventually developing its own competitive sub-culture, esports. Where prize pools have exploded to over $10 million.

In your first comment, tell us which game you chose to play. Give us an estimate of how long you spent playing over the past two weeks.  Talk about whether your game of choice used an avatar (or an agent) and how you did or did not connect to it.  Talk about whether you game regularly, or this was an unusual experience for you.  What do you think of gaming as a culture?  Has this conversation changed your opinion?

Your follow-up posts should be comments on your classmates’ posts.  Have a conversation.  How many posts should you make in total?  I don’t know… how many posts does it take to have a good conversation?  That’s up to you all.

See you on November 18, when we’ll start talking about YouTube and Convergence Culture.


48 Responses to “Gaming posts (PLURAL!) * due on 11/13/14”

  1. The game I’ve been playing is call Temple Run, it is an online game. I probably expended like 4 hours playing that game for the past two weeks. This game uses an Avatar which does everything that I commanded to do. However I am not really connected to it since is a guy rather than a girl. In temple run one must first use the Avatar given than make points and pass game levels in order to unlock an Avatar of your choice. I usually am not a real gamer, I hardly play any game now and although I used to play games before, now I get really bore rapidly. so this was an unusual experience.

    • I tried playing temple run and it is similar to subway surf boy. The obstacles get complicated so you have to focus harder to pass them. I think they are entertaining but i can only play them in a waiting room or just when i don’t have internet. I always like the feeling when you get a lot of coins and with those credits you can buy new avatars or handy materials to use in you game.

  2. The game I played was Hearthstone(but I played many other games in this time span too). I spent about 20 hours in the past two weeks playing it. Hearthstone is a different kind of game. It does not use an avatar, and it really doesn’t use much agency. I’m tempted to say it does not use any agency, but the player can decide what deck and what strategy to use and even what mode to play in. So it does have some agency. I do game very frequently, usually for about an hour a day at least. Gaming as a culture is overall a very fun and excepting place, but like any community there are bad apples. And all it takes is one bad apple to spoil the whole barrel and give everyone a bad name (not unlike what has happened to many other cultures). This conversation has not changed my opinion at all.

  3. “We have discovered that video game players perform 10 to 20 percent higher in terms of perceptual and cognitive ability than normal people that are non-game players…We know that video games can increase perceptual abilities and short-term memory, They allow the player to focus longer and expand the player’s field of vision compared to people who don’t play video games.” This is a quote from Ray Perez, program officer for the Office of Naval Research’s warfighter performance department

    I’m curious as to what your guys reaction to this is. Did you already know about the possibilites of games helping your cognitive abilites (and there being studies to support this)? Or did you already know about this?

    This is also another interesting quote from the same article.
    “Perez credits games and game-like simulations with giving people the ability to more quickly adapt new mental strategies for problem-solving. He says that, for 50 years, it was believed that no training could improve a person’s “fluid intelligence” — the ability “to work outside your present mindset, to think beyond what you have been taught, to go beyond your experience to solve problems in new and different ways.”

    The original article I found the quote from is here:

    • I agree, Video games are not that easy to play. For example getting the hang of the key board and mouse or the controller requires practice and for you not to be looking at it. In certain games you have to use the strategies and have a plan to beat others. Video games have their pros and cons just like many other topics in life.

      • 8167997501 Says:

        I agree with you, I think that some video games are more difficult than others. However I also think that the velocity (time) in which one can learn how to play a game it depends on the quality, story base line and in the fun one gets from the game itself.

      • In a lot of games you need really good memorization of muscle reflex skills. Other games reward the player for being able to solve puzzles, or to work as a team. Some of these skills would be difficult to learn “In real life”. I agree there are cons as well. Just like anything else in life it is good in moderation, but can be bad if used to much. (Even water is harmful if someone drinks it to much)

  4. The game I chose is Words with Friends.I spent the exact minutes you told us to spend (30 minutes),from my understanding about avatars and agents I believe this game has neither. I did not feel any bit of connection my assumption being because an avatar was absent or because it was just a simple game or is it because am not a fan of gaming and I just did it because I was required to. I really don’t know.
    This was not an unusual experience for me because Words with Friends is not complex thus easy to play by.I have come to realize that gaming holds a very strong significance as a culture as any medium of entertainment plus from the readings too it is said that video games revenue now surpasses that of film industry so you can imagine.

  5. ercercercz Says:

    The Game I’ve been playing in the past two weeks is CS:GO (Counter-Strike: Global Offensive) it’s a FPS (First Person Shooter) but this Shooter takes a lot more skill then Call of Duty or Battlefield. Mostly due to the guns having realistic recoil which makes hitting thing very hard in the game, so the game is like 25% learning the Maps, the calls and the other 75% is learning to control the grenades and the guns. The Steam tracker says I’ve played a total of 22 hours on it in the last two weeks but i do play several other games.

  6. The game I was playing was Colonial vs Empire. At first I was drawn into the game but then I started to lose interest. The idea of being challenge and build my own empire made me play the game. Each day i wanted to unlock new levels and create strategies to beat other players. I had to know when to stop playing because i would often tell myself that if i play a little longer it wouldn’t hurt any of my time. I was wrong, but the good thing is that i stopped playing. I decided not to play anymore because others were doing better than me and i felt that i wasn’t investing my time wisely if i was losing anyway. I feel that for the game industry players are dedicated to go beyond the challenges in the game. The game becomes a way of living and some give up their social environment. Gaming is not an addiction once you know when to give it a break and try to do something else that is fun. I do respect the choices of others in doing whatever grabs their interest. I still play video games. i wish I could get the hang of the video games.

    • now that you mention all this i don’t think i focus on the end result which pushes me away from the gaming activity. I could work on telling myself to get more involve for improving my brain abilities.

  7. mbugua2209 Says:

    Its interesting to learn that playing video games help to improve ones cognitive abilities. Although according to the study that research does not seem give enough proof or evidence to the reader.I think i should experiment and then assess myself.

    • I think that it would for the simple fact you have to keep your mind focused on the end result that strengthens your mind and the ability to not get unfocused so easily something I really need to work on.

      • Games really require complete concentration most of the time. If you get distracted for just a minute by something else that can result in you losing or not doing so well.

  8. I’ve been playing several games, either alone or with friends but I don’t play to often. The game that i have been into is Beach Buggy it’s this little kids racing game and you move side to side moving the entire phone. There is also Head’s Up by Ellen that I love playing with friends. There is some days that I would not play at all and when i do its only for like 30 mins or less. Mine has a “car” you can customize when you have enough coins or unlock new characters and the one with friends it’s real simple you just guess the word you friends are describing to you. It’s more about racing then the character for me. I don’t game regularly, I think gamer’s are interesting because I don’t know how they do it to stay so involved in something because I personally don’t get attached to much things so I think it’s pretty cool. The conversation we had in class was very in lightning for me to know about a group of people who are into a certain thing.

    • I think that its better to play with friends than individually. I also thinks gamers are interesting I don’t know how they play when it seems so difficult and complicated.

    • It’s not that unlike from watching a movie or T.V. show (except that it’s interactive). Watching a movie requires the viewers focus (unless they want to possibly miss a crucial part of the story)

    • I love playing Head’s Up with my friends. We have even gotten in trouble here in the tutoring center for playing it and being loud. We play it to kill time and at the same time it stimulates the brain.

  9. The game that I have been playing is a game called “Guess that Emoji”. I started playing this game because I seen my sister playing it and It looked fun to play. This game I would say is maybe a puzzle game. It shows emojis together and you have to guess what it is saying. For example it might show a turtle and pizza. From my knowledge of movies I know the ninja turtles like pizza so I know that this is talking about the movie ninja turtles. I had a lot of fun playing this game and I spent a couple hours each day playing it. Me and my sister would even play together which made it fun. If I didn’t which one it was and she did and that helped. Sometimes I would even get frustrated with not knowing was it was that I would cheat and look on the internet. I am not a regular gamer and that is probably why I cheated. I cheated because I don’t have the patience to try and figure it out. I believe that if I was a regular gamer than this would be a lot different. While playing this game I would say that I was the agent. I would say this because the outcome of my score was based off how well I did with the goal was to get it right. When I think about gaming culture I think that it is super interesting. I don’t know much about it and I use to think that it was weird that someone would like games that much. But now I know its no different from the things I like ..

  10. Why is gaming so popular? How do you become a gamer? Can someone answer?

    • Gaming is so popular for many reasons. One of the biggest reasons is because it is just plain fun to many people. You can get the fun of seeing a story play out, but you are also an “actor” in the movie. Your moves directly result what happens in the story. Thus the story is a little different for everyone. Also there is the fact of competition, it can be similar to playing a sport (such as soccer or football) in this respect. Many people crave competition and the feeling of achievement when you win.
      It’s super easy to become a gamer! Just find a game that you enjoy playing and play it. It’s that simple! The more games you play might lead you to wanting more of a challenge, or more things to do in the game (mechanics), so you might start looking into even more complex games and online games versus other real people.

      • In my personal opinion I don’t believe I could be a gamer because it requires a special type of patience that I just don’t have. I am constantly moving throughout my day and my attention span is horrible.

      • Thank you. I think that I could become a gamer. I think that my problem is I need to find a game that holds my attention. If I were to find this I have no doubt that I would find time out my day to play. I also think that if I was to become a lot more patient than it would help me become more of a gamer so that is where I can agree with cmila7. I think that that too will help me playing more complex games because it seem as if when a game starts to get hard I often just quit.

    • armstrong251994 Says:

      It is popular to me because it is something unique for people to try out. It is something that some people can just go and have fun. I became a gamer by playing madden on my sega.

    • Social networks offer a dimensional place to try new activities. People all over the world play for fun. In order to be a gamer I think you have to develop some type of attitude.

  11. mbugua2209 Says:

    I tried playing Guitar Hero 5 using x-box 360 with the assistance of a five year old. It was challenging because i could not comprehend the instructions on how to play.It uses an avatar to represent the player.I only enjoyed dressing the avatar in a variety of free clothes.
    I am used to playing simple phone games like “UNO” though am not into gaming.

    • I feel like this when we were in class because I could not relate to what was talked about so sticking to the basic UNO and tick tak toe games sounds more fun.

    • I am terrible at Guitar Hero and I never imagined that it could be this hard. I think I am so out of the loop with the new games. I promise it feels like im outdated. what happened to the simple games ?

  12. The games I chose to play were FIFA with my little brother and GTA. (Grand Theft Auto). In FIFA, I was playing for a whole team against my brothers team and I didn’t have a set avatar, I had multiple players to control. The game was fun for me to play but I can not say that I got attached to the team at all or that I would invest more than the time necessary to play the game.
    After our class discussion on Tuesday I now do see gaming as an interesting culture because the number of people who are playing are increasing dramatically. When playing GTA I did look for those female agents to see if what the article was talking about was present and the only women I say were prostitutes on the sidewalks in the game.

  13. Do you think parents should limit the kinds of games that their kids play?

    • Kids can be impressionable. I think parents should limit the types of games their children play, just as they would limit the types of television or movies their children play.

    • Yes! I am a mom and I only download kid-friendly games like Angry Birds or Subway Surfers. Also, he has to earn his time to play because if I don’t, he will be glued to the tablet. I have a cousin who ever since he was three years old, they would buy him every game console that came out. And top of that, they will buy him all the violent games like Killer Instinct and Mortal Kombat. My Aunt and Uncle would let him play at all hours! So, they ended up taking all the games away because my cousin (he was 5 at the time) would wake up in the middle of the night. He would grab the controller and just play while he was asleep!!!!

      • omg that is not okay. I think that there should be limits like you suggested especially for young children. I also don’t think young kids should be playing video games until that are teenagers at least. I wonder why does a 3 year old need a game console? What happen to Leap Frogs…?

    • armstrong251994 Says:

      Some parents should limit if it gets out of hand. When I was younger my mother got me GTA and I played for 3 hours a day. After a couple of days the game got boring too me. My mother set up a schedule for me to show when I could play my games and when I should do homework. So I think it depends on how the parent teaches the kid in time management.

    • A kids behavior is not fully develop so I don’t think allowing them to play video games all the time is appropriate. There should be limits and maybe let them play only if they earn it.

  14. armstrong251994 Says:

    The game I chose to play was subway surfers on my iPad. I played the game for at least an hour to two hours a day. The game has a lot of agents in the game. If you get enough coins you can buy different characters. It connected to me cause it looked like a guy who just wanted to have fun. I regularly game for my free time and when I am very stressed and a little depressed. I think it is its own culture to the world. this has not changed my opinion in gaming.

  15. The game that I played was Injustice. This is the first I played it and my hand hurted. I really didn’t get the point of the game but I guess it has to do with fighting DC characters. It’s almost like comic book storyline. I didn’t spend a lot of time playing because ot would piss me off when I would die!!!

    • armstrong251994 Says:

      Yea i have played that game before on my iPad. It is really hard when you try to use your thumbs. It is very difficult to play because of the enemies get stronger in the end. Yea it makes me mad too when the kill me when I fought so hard just to win.

      • I have a question, what do you think parents of teens should do when they spend hours playing video games? And when the parents intervene by taking the game system away, they become violent. For example, the teen who killed his parents because they wouldn’t let him play the Halo game….

  16. liz I agree this is ridiculous. A child should never become this violent after a game. I blame the game partially but believe that the kid had other problems that influence this. I wonder does this child age play a part and how often the child play the game. I also wonder if the child demonstrated any other violent behavior that the parents noticed.

  17. armstrong251994 Says:

    Liz it is a hard question to answer because. There are some kids who are not ready to play and not mature enough for games like that. The parents did the right thing by taking it away. I just believe they should have sat down with him and had a talk with him why they do not want him to play it. I just think its sad how the situation ended. I had a friend get killed by another gamer because he beat him in Call of Duty and he beat him to death with a controller.

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