COMM 488 - Special Topics in Media Effects
Section: 201 Video Games, Culture and Contexts
Term: SU 2013
Subject: Communication Studies (COMM)
Department: LSA Communication Studies
Waitlist Capacity:
Advisory Prerequisites:
COMM 381 strongly recommended.
May be repeated for a maximum of 8 credit(s). May be elected more than once in the same term.
Undergrad and Grad
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This course takes as its focus the cultural impact of video games from a number of critical perspectives. Just as movies and television have a rich history, video games develop out of a number of social, economic, and technological structures. We will examine video games as cultural texts that are part of a complex, cultural landscape--objects revealing much about cultural anxieties, ideologies, and assumptions. We will analyze a number of video game texts, ranging from early arcade style games, to console games, to PC games, to games for mobile phones. A range of genres within these game texts will be discussed, such as first person shooters, massively multi-player online games, and casual games--unpacking both the formal aspects of the game and the underlying meaning of game narratives. How and by whom are video games produced, how does the industry market particular games to its perceived audience, who plays games and why, and what is so serious about “serious” games? We will draw from a range of methodological and theoretical texts within the field of game studies: critical cultural, ethnographic, media effects, industrial, and historical.

COMM 488 - Special Topics in Media Effects
Schedule Listing
201 (LEC)
WThF 9:00AM - 11:00AM
Note: Reserved for Communication Studies concentrators until 4/18/2013. Meets with SAC 455.202.
NOTE: Data maintained by department in Wolverine Access. If no textbooks are listed below, check with the department.

ISBN: 9780816676460
How to do things with videogames, Author: Bogost, Ian., Publisher: University of Minnesota Press 2011
ISBN: 0472026712
My life as a night elf priest an anthropological account of World of warcraft, Author: Nardi, Bonnie A., Publisher: University of Michigan Press 2010
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