Mods, mods everywhere

One of the things that has irritated me in the past few weeks on reading about mods is that a lot of the articles and chapters and papers:

  1. Mostly use the term ‘mods’ to mean anything that a user creates for a game (occasionally add-ons) but they:
  2. Don’t distinguish between different types of mods/CC
  3. Don’t refer to how games and communities use different words to mean different types of changes
  4. Don’t generally discuss how developers and players themselves have a complicated view of modding behaviours (Consalvo is an exception to this).

Even though I want to focus on a specific type of user created content, I feel it is very important to make these sorts of distinctions since I’m struggling to find it already done elsewhere. This stuff may seem obvious to you, fair enough, but that’s because of your insider knowledge. That is sort of half the point of cultural or sociological research – to look at the stuff someone may think is obvious or takes for granted so much that they’d don’t even question it.

FYI: I’m also referring only to computer gaming. I don’t really play consoles and have little idea of how mods work on there.

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Okay, not a mod, but I laughed😄

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Gaming Paratexts

So where does a game begin and end? Or a book? You could say it starts with the beginning and ends with the end or credit screen, but there’s a whole new world out there! Gérard Genette wrote about paratexts, the little things that surround a book – like copyright, chapter headings, cover, interviews, etc – which surround and extend a text (within the book = peritext; external to the book = epitext). Genette calls paratexts a “threshold”, an undefined zone that is neither in the text, nor outside, but frames the text and extends it. Genette is very obviously discussing books, but let’s see how it can work for games!

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Geek Nail Art

One of my other hobbies is nail polish and nail art. Every 1-3 times a week, I do my nails in pretty and fabulous ways. I’m not the best at it, but it is something to do which is nice and relaxing. My biggest issue is deciding what to do – I have about 150 nail polish colours and there’s a wide range of techniques and designs to do. Of course, what better than to combine my love of nail polish and my love of geekdom?

This is easy to do – even for a nail polish noob! I really admire people who can paint whole artistic scenes on their nails, but I don’t have the ability for that sort of fine art. I tend to rely on colour schemes and stamping primarily, so this post will be about easy-to-do tributes.  nails

(Not really a geek nail design, just one of my favourites ^_^)

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Might and Magic 7 Beta: Comparisons

heroes

Heroes of Might and Magic was a pretty big series for me. Not only did I play it a lot, but I used to write fanfiction on it. Yeah. I went there. The one I remember the most of was a story based on these two heroes, but called Catriona and Rasha. I don’t quite remember the plot, something about two mortal enemies working together, and then Rasha gets revived into a human again. I REALLY loved this game.

~

I got access to the latest beta build through EB Games Australia (@ebgamesAus), and thought this would be a good time to see how the game has changed from the late 90’s (HoMM3 was released 1999, with two expansions in 1999 and 2000). This is the second of a short series of posts on Heroes, my history playing it, the evolution of the game itself (from the perspective of someone who hasn’t played the last 3 adaptations of it), comparisons, and how the game itself plays (in beta). Missed part one? Here it is!

If there are any errors in this post, my bad! It has been a long time since I played, and I haven’t even touched 4, 5, or 6. I did make an effort to research things, but feel free to comment where I went wrong!

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Might and Magic Heroes 7 Beta: Series background

11911838_10206390180747292_1751115302_nI loved strategy games when I was a teen, and one of my favourites was Heroes of Might and Magic. As with almost every other game, my interest waned as The Sims and then World of Warcraft came out (yes, I know, I have SO MANY cool games to catch up on! I’m trying). Most of my time with the HoMM series was in the second and third incarnations.

I got access to the latest beta build through EB Games Australia (@ebgamesAus), and thought this would be a good time to see how the game has changed from the late 90’s (HoMM3 was released 1999, with two expansions in 1999 and 2000). This is the first of a short series of posts on Heroes, my history playing it, the evolution of the game itself (from the perspective of someone who hasn’t played the last 3 adaptations of it), comparisons, and how the game itself plays (in beta).

If there are any errors in this post, my bad! It has been a long time since I played, and I haven’t even touched 4, 5, or 6. I did make an effort to research things, but feel free to comment where I went wrong!

Continue reading Might and Magic Heroes 7 Beta: Series background

Immersion and related concepts in gaming

Finally, I got some free time to finish my mind-map of all the things that go into immersion or identification in video games! There’s a tonne of citations and resources there, should anyone be curious about certain concepts.

External link to Prezi here!

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The picture above can’t be zoomed in like with Prezi, as WordPress doesn’t like embedding them, it’s just here to look at all the colours and lines!

Gaming, playing, and methodology

whatsOne of my biggest pet peeves in reading gaming studies is when studies seem to patronise gamers, which can happen in various ways such as the researcher not even playing the games (or mentioning that they have ANY experience with games) or not allowing the player to speak for themselves.

Just for some context: my main area of study is around immersion and identification. I should also mention I use qualitative methods, not quantitative, so if you are a researcher reading this, going ‘WTF she on about?’ feel free to leave a comment about how it works in your discipline. Always happy to learn!

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