Categories
Reviews

Book review: Women in Classical Video Games, edited by Jane Draycott and Kate Cook (Bloomsbury, 2022)

Classical video games are not immune to the ailment most video games suffer from: at best erasing and at worst denigrating and/or abusing women. This becomes increasingly problematic when history is concerned not just because it legitimizes the representations included in the games through association with historical events and – it is present in a historical […]

Categories
Development Environment

Games are location, location, location

Imagine you are playing a game. Where are you? And does the location where you play shape your experience in any way? The game experience always happens in a place, public and/or private [1]. There could be multiple reasons why you are playing in a private or public place, depending on the kind of game […]

Categories
(Post) Colonialism

Reply to Click to Colonise: Space, Power and History in Strategy Games

The following post by Arturo Iannace is a reply to the HGN blogpost by Dr Adam Chapman for our (Post)Colonialism theme. In turn Adam has considered the points and his response is included here. Arturo Mariano Iannace is a PhD candidate at the IMT School of Advanced Studies, in the curriculum of Cognitive and Cultural […]

Categories
Environment

Recording: HGN Panel on “Environments” (September 2022)

The fifth HGN panel event took place on 14 September and discussed the theme of “Environments”. We welcomed Dr Emma Fraser (University of California Berkeley), Dr Tine Rassalle (Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience in New Orleans) and Daniela De Angeli (Echo Games) as panellists. Hosted by Dr Adam Chapman, the panel discussed the role of […]

Categories
Environment

Why ‘environments’ in games are always historical: a provocation

When I think about the first ‘historical’ game that I ever played, I come up short. I didn’t play series like Age of Empires or Sid Meier’s Civilization until I was older – not because of my age, but because I didn’t have ready access to a gaming PC setup until I was in my […]

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Environment

Today’s Present is Tomorrow’s History

If there’s anything that is constant, it’s that everything changes. Cities grow, villages disappear, buildings go up and buildings get destroyed. What is old makes place for the new. Add to this the destruction of war, natural disasters, and the effects of global warming, and we can see the natural and human landscapes that surround […]

Categories
(Post) Colonialism Environment

Is the Age of Empires II an Age of Exploiting Nature, too?

Many years later, as I face my laptop now, I remember a distant afternoon in 2002 when my cousin in college took me to discover Age of Empires II. While enjoying the old game two decades later, I noticed some issues from the perspective of environmental humanities. Different from other critical perspectives, such as feminism […]

Categories
Environment

Mapping Game Environments: Player Cartography as History

By offering environments in which play can take place, games provide their players with resources from which they can craft their own narratives. In historical games this includes the capacity to create stories set in the spaces of the past, but players can be seen to engage in historical work in relation to a range […]

Categories
Environment

Just Like Old Times: An Exploration into Video Game Soundtracks and Authenticity

While researching my dissertation, I came across a recent book by Andra Ivănescu, entitled Popular Music in the Nostalgia Video Game: The Way It Never Sounded (2019). It’s a very interesting read, particularly the opening chapter, which talks in depth about the BioShock franchise and how the appropriation of genres of music, along with cultural […]

Categories
Environment

Traversing the landscapes of memory: What can exploring The Forgotten City tell us about contentious monuments and difficult pasts?

SPOILER WARNING: This blog contains key plot details from The Forgotten City. What do we do with memorials that make us uncomfortable? Recently there has been a collective reckoning with the physical reminders of contentious histories. The Black Lives Matter protests of 2020 targeted many statues and memorials with links to slavery. The question of […]