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Immersive Gameplay: Essays on Participatory…
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Immersive Gameplay: Essays on Participatory Media and Role-Playing

by Evan Torner

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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Very good collection of scholarly essays on RPG. Not for the light of heart, bring your critical theory cheat book though if you weren't a sociology, literature, or other major that focused on critical theory (or if you're like me you haven't used much of it since you graduated). ( )
  kedicat | May 4, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Immersive Gameplay edited by Evan Torner and William White provides a timely set of essays focusing on participatory media and role-playing. The book explores how role-playing games impact psychological states, how immersive experiences connection to culture, society, and reality, and uses of game mechanisms in television and video games. The three selections provide a wonderful cross-section of forward thinking examples and approaches.

These well-researched essays do an excellent job connecting well-known scholars and established theories with the next-generation of thinking on immersive technology.

I was impressed that the book was not simply a rehash of World of Warcraft experiences. Instead, the authors explored a wide variety of thoughts on the topic of immersive gameplay and its impact on players.

I would recommend this book to anyone interested in role-playing, multi-user virtual experiences, gaming, or other types of participatory media. It will sit alongside Reality is Broken by Jane McGonigal, The Art of Immersion by Frank Rose, Third Person by Pat Harrigan, The Grasshopper: Games, Life and Utopia by Bernard Suits, and Confronting the Challenged of Participatory Culture & Convergence Culture by Henry Jenkins in my library. ( )
  eduscapes | Dec 6, 2012 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I can't lie. I really enjoyed the one article I read out of this book-- The first one. The first article is fascinating and disturbing all at once. Finnish RPGers are apparently hardcore.

Then I realized that I had neither the vocabulary nor the psychology expertise to really get the most out of it. I would like to say that I pushed through, read the whole thing, but I didn't. I may eventually pick it up and read more-- It really is interesting-- but when I need to either use a dictionary or go from context on at least three words in each paragraph it's time to admit defeat. ( )
  sporkdelis | Nov 27, 2012 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Immersive Gameplay is comprised of essays edited by Evan Torner and William J. White, and while the topics are inviting to anyone who's into the gaming experience (myself included), please note the text is written by academics and is primarily for scholarly peer review. Most of the points presented here will be inaccessible to us laypeople.

There are some real human moments when source quotations and passages are cited within the essays. These provided substantial context for me, and I only wish more were included.

The titles I connected with the most are "Role-Playing Communities, Cultures of Play and the Discourse of Immersion" and "A Game About Killing: Role-Playing in the Liminal Spaces of Social Network Games." ( )
  Daniel.Estes | Nov 19, 2012 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Immersive Gameplay is a collection of essays on participatory media and role playing, as the title suggests. It explores the interesting psychological effect role playing has on the mind, and what it says about us when we make choices within the 'safe' environment of games and play. Or, at least, I believe it tries to, anyway...

Like any collection of essays some items had me entranced and others had me bored and uninterested. Some authors had very inspired and interesting theories and others made wild assumptions and called it science, and others said very little at all other than to spend an entire article recounting someone else's experiment and applying their hypothesis to it.

The collaboration as a whole could be better. I'm not even really sure who the intended audience is. It is very scholarly in nature but it also requires knowledge related to gaming, such as knowing what LARPing and MMORPGs are. (My computer's spellcheck doesn't.) It's quite a niche market, and if BOTH of these don't apply to you it's possible you'll find it as boring as I did at times. As a gamer I was interested in what they had to say but as a non-scholar popular science lover I found their writing tedious and sleep-inducing. ( )
1 vote Ape | Nov 3, 2012 |
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