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Gaming: Essays On Algorithmic Culture (Electronic Mediations) 0th Edition

4.2 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0816648511
ISBN-10: 0816648514
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

 Alexander R. Galloway is associate professor of media studies at New York University and lives in New York, NY. He is the author of four books on digital media and critical theory, most recently The Interface Effect.
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Product Details

  • Series: Electronic Mediations (Book 18)
  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Univ Of Minnesota Press (May 27, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0816648514
  • ISBN-13: 978-0816648511
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #936,195 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By calvinnme HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on December 16, 2006
Format: Paperback
This is a fun book to read that is written in an accessible and engaging style that contains some really interesting ideas about gaming. Because this is more a collection of interrelated essays than a sustained argument, it makes sense to approach each essay individually.

In the first chapter-essay, to understand the relationship between the player and the game space, the author arrives at a cartesian plane of possible gaming moments: The x-axis moves between the operator's and the machine's actions, and the y-axis moves between diegetic and non-diegetic actions. The result is that some common gaming moments can be reliably plotted in this plane. The author's approach here presents a way to initiate a discussion around action, but the entire argument doesn't hang on the validity of this model. This diagram forces the author to define game diegesis somewhat narrowly within the confines of certain kinds of games, and it seems somewhat arbitrary where he draws the line between diegetic and non-diegetic. However, it's an interesting beginning, and the terms and relationships Galloway sets up here permeate the remainder of the essays, contextualizing them all within the idea of game action.

In chapter 2, the author goes to great lengths to justify his central claim that where film uses the subjective shot to represent a problem with identification, games use the subjective shot to create identification. The problem with first-person or subjective camerawork is that the perspective suggests agency or the ability to interact. It is in these moments in cinema where the camera exposes itself as an agent of looking, and the audience is confronted with its own status as observer.
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Format: Paperback
Interesting book, but not entirely what I was expecting. It takes a very filmic approach to videogames, focusing on gaze and perspective. There are some interesting parallels draw between film and games, but for the most part, the author seems more comfortable in a critical eye outside of games themselves.

I lost interest in the book about halfway through, but I may pick it up again. If you are looking for a book about interaction or theories of play and leisure, this is not the book for you.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A collection of essays about video games that jive with some of the "broader" academic interests and interpretations of the medium. I personally found value in Galloway's cross-disciplinary approach to video game analysis, and his efforts to visualize a bridge between video game studies and other media studies (like film). The rating is a 5/5 because I think Galloway delivers on the claims made in the short description. I (a media studies graduate student), found this helpful in increasing my scope of understanding of how the greater academic world sees (or could see) my passion.
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Format: Paperback
College-level students of media studies will appreciate the examination of digital and video culture offered in Gaming: Essays on Algorithmic Culture: examples from over fifty video games are used to construct a classification system of action in video games which blends gameplay with software crashes, network lags, and game hacks. From the origins of the first-person shooter to game structures and new interpretations of images and character, any interested in media and gaming will find this scholarly discourse exciting.

Diane C. Donovan

California Bookwatch
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Format: Paperback
Excellent book. Until now, I have read the first two essays. In the first one, Gamic Actions - Four Moments, the author has developed an analysis framework for games based on the concept of diegesis. In the second, he digs the origins of the First-Person Shooter based on the film history. Definitely, this book will be an important reference in my doctorate research.
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