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Sensing game play: Exploring game play in a game cafe and a Mass LAN party
Stockholms universitet, Institutionen för data- och systemvetenskap.
Stockholms universitet, Institutionen för data- och systemvetenskap.
2011 (English)In: Computer Games (CGAMES), 2011, Piscataway, N.J.: IEEE Communications Society, 2011, 134-141 p.Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

In this article we discuss the sensory experiences of playing computer games by exploring the sight, the sound, the taste, smell, and touch of games. We reflect on how senses and the social atmosphere gives meaning to players’ experiences of playing computer games in two co-located public settings, a game café and a mass LAN party. This discussion is related to a more general discussion concerning what it means to participate and play online and network games in a game café and a mass LAN party. The discussion is based on a field study in Sweden. We conclude by highlighting the different experiences of playing computer games and participating in those colocated game settings. In the game café playing computer games is a rather ordinary and mundane activity while playing games in the mass LAN party is to a large extent a sensational and extra ordinary event.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Piscataway, N.J.: IEEE Communications Society, 2011. 134-141 p.
Keyword [en]
Sensoyr experiences of games, co-located game play settings, game cafe, public game play
National Category
Information Systems
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-20029DOI: 10.1109/CGAMES.2011.6000328ISBN: 978-1-4577-1451-1OAI: oai:DiVA.org:sh-20029DiVA: diva2:659357
Conference
16th International Conference on Computer Games (CGAMES), 27-30 July 2011, Louisville, KY
Available from: 2013-10-25 Created: 2013-10-25 Last updated: 2014-11-03Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Hanging out in the game café: Contextualising co-located computer game play practices and experiences
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Hanging out in the game café: Contextualising co-located computer game play practices and experiences
2012 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

What social practices are people involved when staying in a game café? What kind of social setting is the game café? What are the attitudes towards playing computer games at home and in public among parents? What are the media representations of co-located game playing in public? What are the sensory experiences of playing co-located game play in public? This dissertation gives a descriptive and analytical account of the contexts and meanings of playing co-located computer games in public settings such as game cafés and LAN parties. The overall aim with the dissertation is to describe and investigate the social and cultural meanings and contexts of playing computer games in a game café. The research questions have been investigated in four empirical studies.

The dissertation shows that people are involved in various social practices and activities aimed at supporting and maintaining social relationships among friends and peers. The game café can be seen as a third place, as it used by players for recreation and an escape from the pressure of home and school, a place which feels like home, is familiar and welcoming. However the game café is a limited third place used by young men who likes to play online and network games. The dissertation also shows how the social environment provides for specific sensory experiences. These sensory experiences involve sitting together side by side slapping each other’s shoulders and legs, eating candies and drinking sodas, listening to music. The representations of co-located game playing in public reproduce traditional gender roles where professional gamers are represented by men and causal gamers are represented by women (and men) as well as construct youth as party lovers. The study also suggests that parents’ attitudes towards their children playing games in public draw on traditional values and ideas about children’s play and social relationships.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Computer and Systems Sciences, Stockholm University, 2012. 71 p.
Series
Report Series / Department of Computer & Systems Sciences, ISSN 1101-8526 ; 12-007
Keyword
co-located game play, Game café, LAN party, game play experiences, public settings, senses
National Category
Computer and Information Science Sociology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-20026 (URN)978-91-7447-511-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2012-05-30, sal C, Forum 100, Isafjordsgatan 39, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following paper was unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 4: Submitted. 

Available from: 2013-10-25 Created: 2013-10-25 Last updated: 2014-12-05Bibliographically approved

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