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Play Between Worlds: Exploring Online Game…
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Play Between Worlds: Exploring Online Game Culture

by T. L. Taylor

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A thin book, somewhat dated but still relevant. Taylor doesn't say much that hasn't been said before, but she does express some ideas more clearly and rigorously than can be found elsewhere in the literature. As a fairly light read, this is a decent entry point to the study of virtual worlds for reasonably informed readers; those who need a bit more hand-holding should start with Castronova. The fact that Taylor focuses on Everquest, which is strangely ignored by many scholars in her field, also helps to set this book apart from the rest. Not essential reading, but hardly a waste of time. ( )
  breadhat | Jul 23, 2013 |
T.L. Taylor is a long time player of EverQuest and uses her experience as a social researcher to explain the complexities of the social interactions to non-players. As an online gamer myself, I appreciated her thoughtful look at how players change the games they play and create ways to connect with each other. One of the most effective chapters was called Where the Women Are and looks at how the gaming world is mired in stereotypes and doesn't know how to make women welcome and feel like gamers first and not women. This is a book that I would recommend to anyone who spends their time networking online as through the lens of EverQuest, Taylor makes many good points about how online communication allows us to move between many worlds. ( )
  katekf | May 11, 2011 |
It's now available as an ebook on the MIT press portal http://mitpress-ebooks.mit.edu/product/play-between-worlds
  ipublishcentral | Oct 23, 2009 |
I enjoyed this a lot. While not necessarily a fan of World of Warcraft and the like, the key points still resonated with me in regards to my own gaming experiences. Much food for thought here. ( )
  zerraweth | Jul 11, 2007 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0262201631, Hardcover)

In Play Between Worlds, T. L. Taylor examines multiplayer gaming life as it is lived on the borders, in the gaps--as players slip in and out of complex social networks that cross online and offline space. Taylor questions the common assumption that playing computer games is an isolating and alienating activity indulged in by solitary teenage boys. Massively multiplayer online games (MMOGs), in which thousands of players participate in a virtual game world in real time, are in fact actively designed for sociability. Games like the popular Everquest, she argues, are fundamentally social spaces.Taylor's detailed look at Everquest offers a snapshot of multiplayer culture. Drawing on her own experience as an Everquest player (as a female Gnome Necromancer)--including her attendance at an Everquest Fan Faire, with its blurring of online-and offline life--and extensive research, Taylor not only shows us something about games but raises broader cultural issues. She considers "power gamers," who play in ways that seem closer to work, and examines our underlying notions of what constitutes play--and why play sometimes feels like work and may even be painful, repetitive, and boring. She looks at the women who play Everquest and finds they don't fit the narrow stereotype of women gamers, which may cast into doubt our standardized and preconceived ideas of femininity. And she explores the questions of who owns game space--what happens when emergent player culture confronts the major corporation behind the game.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:29 -0400)

"In Play Between Worlds, T.L. Taylor examines multiplayer gaming life as it is lived on the borders, in the gaps - as players slip in and out of complex social networks that cross online and offline space. Taylor questions the common assumption that playing computer games is an isolating and alienating activity indulged in by solitary teenage boys. Massively multiplayer online games (MMOGs), in which thousands of players participate in a virtual game world in real time, are in fact actively designed for sociability. Games like the popular EverQuest, she argues, are fundamentally social spaces."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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