Play Redux: The Form of Computer Games

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-04-30
  • Publisher: Univ of Michigan Pr
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Play Redux is an ambitious description and critical analysis of the aesthetic pleasures of video game play, drawing on formalist literary theory, cognitive science, and semiotics. Employing a concept of biological naturalism grounded in cognitive theory, Myers argues for a clear delineation between the aesthetics of play and the aesthetics of texts. In the course of this study, Myers asks a number of interesting questions: What are the mechanics of human play as exhibited in computer games? Can these mechanisms be modeled? What is the evolutionary function of cognitive play, and is it, on the whole, a good thing? Intended as a provocative corrective to the currently ascendant, if not dominant, cultural and ethnographic approach to game studies and play, Play Redux will generate interest among scholars of communications, new media, and film. Book jacket.

Author Biography

David Myers is Reverend Aloysius B. Goodspeed Distinguished Professor at the School of Mass Communication, Loyola University New Orleans.

Table of Contents

Introductionp. 1
What computer games are
Bad Playp. 15
Anti-nessp. 30
Formalism Reduxp. 40
Interface and Codep. 50
The Computer Game Anti-aestheticp. 65
What computer games aren't
Anti-narrativep. 71
The Backstoryp. 86
Civilizationp. 98
The self and the social
Social Playp. 117
City of Heroesp. 132
Play and Punishmentp. 144
The genie in the bottle
Final Commentsp. 158
Notesp. 163
Referencesp. 173
Indexp. 181
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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