Monday, 26 March 2007



Rhetoric can be expressed in many forms, including verbal, visual and writing. It can be described as “being a persuasive discourse, or an implicit narrative, wittingly or unwittingly adopted by members of a particular affiliation to persuade others of the veracity or worth-whileness of their beliefs.” Salen and Zimmerman (page. 517)Personally I am obsessed with Tomb Raider game. As a player you become tough girl called Lara Croft. It’s a very excited game follows the exploits of Lara Croft, a British female archaeologist in search of ancient treasures in Indiana Jones .Each digital game expresses its rhetoric through visuals and instructions in the game.When playing Tomb Raider the visuals are third party so the image of the ‘attractive’ Lara Croft is on view. She must kill dangerous animals and creatures in her quest. The rhetoric within the game is quite violent, when playing you must kill to reach your goal. It does not condone violence, although there is limited violent action towards humans.The game was critically acclaimed and widely influential and the world she inhabits is fully drawn in three dimension. The object of Tomb Raider is to guide Lara through a series of tombs and other locations in search of treasures and artifacts.Salen and Zimmerman (2004, p.483) quite rightly point out that to be successful in games like this then you must follow their rules and beliefs whether or not you agree with what is being done you must do it to complete the game “they accept rules so that they can play a game, and they accept these rules so that they can play this game” (Salen and Zimmerman 2004, p.181).I personally feel that influences such as rhetoric in games are powerful, but cannot be considered contributing factors for illegal activity. A possible explanation to why someone may want to imitate something they have seen in a game is because they cannot distinguish between reality and fiction!
word count:325


In the past few years since gaming industry start to make what we called mature video game that have violent factors in it, Which lead to suspected factor to fuelling aggressive and negative behaviour among gamers who is mostly youngster. Researches (Goldstein, 2000) make categorization base on demographic factor, studies that examine the relationship between playing game and behaviours, and comparison of those who play video game and those who is not.
In his research there are factors that support the connection between violent behaviours and video game but surprisingly it is the youngsters that play video game that contain less violent who has tendency to act violently towards other, rather than youngsters that play video game with higher violent factor in the game, Goldstein also argue that it is not the video games that causes violent behaviours, and some youngster is using video game as way to cope with their problems, furthermore the tendency of aggressive youngsters attracted to violent video games is high (Goldstein, 1998), he concluded that experience with violent games does not related to perception of crime.
There are some games that sparked public attention such as Grand Theft Auto where a youngster killed police officer and Grand Theft Auto is to blame for the influential factor (CBS News, 2007), with no surprise that Grand Theft Auto creating moral panic among parents, as cover in CNN (CNN 2004) stated that Grand Theft Auto is a violent game.
Rhetoric aspect in games, as explained rhetoric is the act of persuasion either by verbal and non verbal, such example is Rome total war a strategic game that having value of winning war and conquering other nation is a good thing, the game emphasis on the overthrown other nation, by way diplomatic or war, in the game as faction of roman empire a player must build troops and economic factors to support the campaign, player can make diplomatic relationship with other nation, also buying a part of particular nation, but war is the most efficient way to conquer other nation, this support the rhetoric theory of persuasion and Rome total war has present themselves of having value of rhetoric factors in the game.
woed count:432

Wittgenstein on Games

Wittgenstein’s idea on games is that they all generally have overlapping similarities and share some common features. He outlines 3 features which are found in majority of games, however not all games have all three features, but most have at least two. These features are, the game could either be a skills game, something like Tetris, on the other hand, a game may only require luck, i.e. the lottery. And finally the game may have an element of competitiveness. A game must at least have one of these features to be considered a game. Wittgenstein describes games using the metaphor of a rope with different twisted fibres, not a single thread. He also describes games using the idea of family resemblance. Family members often share similar features, i.e. nose, eyes etc but will not all have exactly the same features. This is the case with games.I will be discussing three games in terms of their shared features. The first game I will discuss is The PC game Minesweeper: Although this game requires some skill in trying to work out, by the number clues given, where the next bomb might be, the game also requires some luck, as choosing your first few boxes is randomly done, with out any thought or skills required. There is no competition in this game, however some may argue that you are competing with the PC or yourself.Football soccer: This game would be highly competitive as you are competing directly against the other team, and would need a lot of good game controlling skills. However luck does not seem a feature of he game as it is more skills orientated than luck. You need skills to control the ball and make the right moves not luck.Pin ball: whether this game is more skills orientated than luck orientated is debatable. Some may consider the way you strike the flippers determains how successful you are in the game. Where as some may debate that the striking of the flippers requires no skill and the game is based on luck as the player has no control over where the ball goes, its luck. Again this game is only competitive in the sense that you may be competing against yourself by setting your self higher target scores etc.
Word count 384

Wednesday, 21 March 2007


There are many kinds of definition of ‘game’. For example, it needs to have rules, kinds of goals, competitions; or it should include many exciting and interesting challenges. However, all of these features do not stay in one game perfectly. A better description one is concluded by Salen K. and Zimmerman E. (2004, p80). They defined a game as ‘a system in which players engage in an artificial conflict, defined by rules, that results in a quantifiable outcome‘. Wittgenstein asks that we “don’t think, but look”, he discusses the fact that if you look between games there is nothing common but there are similarities and relationships much like the similarities between those in a family “much that is common is retained, but much is lost” (Wittgenstein 1968, p.31)
Wittgenstein observes that games don't all share the same features but they do all contain overlapping similarities, for example squash and the lottery. Squash is a skilful, competitive game whereas the lottery is competitive but contains no skill. Both games share a similarity in competitiveness but cannot be defined in the same way. What Wittgenstein is saying has much truth behind it. When trying to define the concept of ‘game’ myself I tried to look at all the similarities between them and the usual concepts such as competitive, entertaining, there’s always a winner and a loser, there’s always an aim, they’re challenging, etc. However, after playing The Magic Seal a game where the aim is to solve puzzles and rescue your dog and Fishy a game where the aim is to eat fishes smaller than you and avoid the ones that are bigger than you online I found that it is very true that some characteristics stick with both games and others drop. The Magic Seal is a puzzle game it is entertaining, challenging and there is an aim to it. However, in comparison to other games such as Fishy the entertainment and addictive value is not as high as The Magic Seal Although what the relationship between both games is, is that neither have a winner or loser, both games have an aim/goal and both are interactive.

Word count:360