Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Term Paper Abstract

Whether you are a gamer or not, it is evident that video games have undoubtedly been a new force in today's media. Games over the years have evolved rapidly, with many new features being implemented over time. In particular, I plan to discuss the communication aspect that gaming now offers the masses, and how it actually may promote social interaction (both virtual and actual), contradicting the common notion that many gamers lack social skills or are socially inept. Years ago, games were only meant to played by one or two people, sitting in the same room. Now hundreds upon thousands of people can log into an account and play the game together all over the world. Headsets now are considered standard for the Xbox 360 and PS3, and the use of such tools promotes players to interact with one another on a field only possible when people were sitting in the same room. Some multiplayer games nowadays are much easier when cooperating and communicating with other people, such as in titles like Left 4 Dead, which encourage players to stick together lest they want to be beaten by a horde of zombies. The Nintendo Wii and titles like Mario Party lend themselves to group sessions between people. Games such as Rock Band and Guitar Hero actually have messages during loading screens that encourage players to have their friends pick up instrument peripherals and rock out to music. And even more recently, Microsoft has released an update for the Xbox whereby users may hop onto their Twitter and Facebook accounts with full functionality.

I plan to also touch upon the subject and theories of the cyborg, and the notion that players may have these "alternate" lives or realities on the screen.

Possible sources:
Facebook and Twitter on Xbox:

Sherry Turkle's Life on the Screen

Nintendo Wii General Info:

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