From Huizinga to Frasca : The Emergence and Establishment of Games as a Field of Study

University essay from Uppsala universitet/Högskolan på Gotland/Institutionen för speldesign

Author: Tom Von Sydow; [2017]

Keywords: ;

Abstract: Video games, having become a mass market and part of popular culture, has in the last few decades gained increasingly more attention from the academic community. Within the arts, it was not until Johan Huizinga’s Homo Ludens, released in 1938, that games were first considered as anything more than childish pastime and even then, it would take decades before game studies, from a non-mathematical perspective, emerged as a subject. This study examines the major scholars and theories that exist within the game studies community with focus on arts, to gain a deeper understanding of games in general and game studies in particular. According to the findings of this study, most of scholars within this field have contributed with one or more theories that have helped the field’s understanding of games, that there are substantial similarities in the scholars’ definitions, that the major differences are in the vocabulary, as well as that game studies have grown increasingly more independent from other academic fields including game theory.

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