Spelet om spelandet : En medieetnografisk studie av barns dataspelande på en fritidsklubb
Title: The game of playing: A media ethnographic study of children playing videogames on a Swedish after school recreation centre. Spelet om spelandet: En medieetnografisk studie av barns dataspelande på en fritidsklubb.
Number of pages: 46
Author: Peter Brandberg
Tutor: Amelie Hössjer
Period: Spring term 2008
Course: Media and Communication studies D
University: Division of Media and Communication, Department of Information Science, Uppsala University
Purpose/Aim: The aim with this study is to describe how children play video games in an everyday context. In this study this context consists of a Swedish after school recreation centre. By combining three different aspects on the activity this study tries to understand how both the video game and the social and cultural context in which the activity takes place in influences it. This by taking one analyse of the specific game that the children played at the time of the study and how the overall environment is structured into account. Together these two perspectives contribute to the understanding of the playing as a complex and dynamic activity.
Material/Method: The material and method consists primary of a participatory observation which were conducted for eight days in an after school recreation centre. The analyse of the video game uses specific parts from the ludologist Aki Järvinens “applied ludology” to understand the game Guitar Hero.
Main results: The main results of this study shows how the social context influences the play activity in which the children needs to negotiate about the resources needed to play. They used different strategies to try to gain control over the interfaces to the game. The study also shows how the children didn’t relate to the fact that these interfaces looked like guitars in their use of them. Instead the children used knowledge about other interfaces and played the game by “pressing buttons in the right time”.
Keywords: media ethnographic, participatory observation, ludology, applied ludology, video game, game studies, guitar hero, children, after school recreation centre, situated play
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