The department of Game Design at Uppsala University, campus Gotland
This is the highly informal blog of the GAME-department. We use it mostly to document the things we do outside of running one of the worlds strongest game educations. For information about our education, programs and courses, check the official site at Uppsala University.
So your crowdfunding missed its target, your company can’t send you, or you want to scout talent before anyone else gets the chance. Whatever the reason, you may earn yourself a free Conference Pass and front row seats to meet our students by serving on the GGC Jury!
The jury arrive a day early (28/5) to attend student presentations (2-4 hours, with breaks) and then play their games on the show floor and provide thoughtful and constructive feedback throughout the conference. Jury duty requires no work prior to the event, but once here you will have to prioritize and make time to play all games – enough to provide fair criticism and advice.
The Game Educators Summit is a 2-day meeting hosted by the Department of Game Design, during the GGC. We aim to bring together all higher game educations (internationally) to discuss our common concerns and set up a network of support.
So; two days, broken up by the Gotland Game Conference. The first day (28/5) is filled with short presentations and an evening meet-and-greet on the show floor among the student games.
The second day (31/5) takes place after the GGC, when everyone is warmed up and inspired. We’ll meet the Higher Education Videogame Alliance, and then split into groups to discuss our specific areas of interest.
So far, we have a one-two punch of Chris Franklin and Doris Rusch: Chris will lay the foundation of a platform study, arguing that computational devices funnels us towards spatial simulation and conflict – partially explaining the early decades of simplistic violence in our video games.
Then Doris will follow up and show how we might resist this technological determinism, bringing metaphor and nuance into our digital systems.
We contrast Bartle’s massive scope with a deeply personal and intimate design lecture by Sabine Harrer – using lessons learned from developing Jocoi, a game about pregnancy loss, to teach us about the power of grief in games.
So that’s the first four in place! There’s four more slots to fill in the coming weeks – stay tuned. 🙂
“It wasn’t too long ago that a US court ruled that games were not worthy of first amendment protection. They were not understood as adequately expressive or communicative to justify it. Now, games are seen and studied as vehicles for meaning generation. They are a corner stone of our social practices and play a large role in our identity formation. Tell me what you play, and I tell you who you are. They make us think about life in ways that are just as profound as reading poetry or philosophical source texts. Games are truly coming of age […]”
“But it is not just the games themselves that are ‘growing up’ – it’s the players, too. It takes a generation for every new medium to be taken seriously. We trust games to be deep and meaningful, to have the potential of moving us profoundly, of making us think about life, the universe and everything. Attitude has a lot to do with it. It’s easy to be cynical, to claim games are just for kids. Or to be fearful and object to the medium because some of its messages and representations might be concerning.”
But like the special issue journal Rusch is writing about here, we too can have a grown up discourse about a grown up medium! The GGC 2017 will see conversations ranging from human rights and virtual worlds, to how we can broach the topics of sexuality, intimacy and, indeed, sex in video games. We want to try and problematize our reliance on “gaming literacy”, and look at designing for “non-gaming” (or “normal”) people. And, always, with an eye towards social issues, power and equality.