Thursday, April 25, 2002

Defining Ludology… Gonzalo asks for definitions, and Jill ponders the term. As I see it (and this is not an authorized definition), ludology has become a label convenient to use when

* There’s a need to point out that games are not narratives/stock-trading/performances
* Somebody needs to distinguish the study of computer games from other computer media
* Apply for money/reject applications for money

Espen is great on claiming that concepts have been take over by other meaning (ex: interaction), but in the case of ludology I don’t think it ever had any specific meaning other than a way to establish “otherness” within certain related disciplines. I think this has to do with the rigidity of for instance literature theory. Media studies have long been picking up the renegades from literature studies, and now ludology is the new refuge for those who find that {add theoretical approach of your choice} doesn’t cover all aspects of written cultural expressions.

Personally I study games, but I am not a ludologist. I am a media scholar, and computer games are yet another medium for me to study. So games and the knowledge of gametheory is important in order to understand this medium, but media science is a hybrid science, a street-mix of the most barbarian kind, which is why I love it. And when I am done with this dissertation I can spend a couple of months reading newspapers and comics, watching television, listen to the radio and going through trashy romances – not to speak of indulging in leafing through advertisements in one glossy magazine after the other – and it’s work. I need to update myself. All that and games too. Yes!

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