Videogame Studies Panels at SCMS 2012

Later this week I’ll be heading to Boston for the annual conference of the Society for Cinema and Media Studies. I’m delighted to be presenting on a panel organized by my frequent conspirator Zach Whalen on code studies and videogames. I’m also delighted that there will be an abundance of other panels devoted to videogames.

For my ease—and hopefully others’—I’ve compiled a list of all of these panels. If I’m missing a videogame-oriented panel, let me know in the comments, and I’ll add it right away.

[heading style=”1″]Videogame Studies Panels at SCMS 2012[/heading]

Wednesday, March 21, 2012 10:00AM-11:45PM (Session A)

A7: Harder Than You Think: The Difficulty and Digital Games Panel

Room: Cambridge
Chair: Felan Parker (York University)

  • Felan Parker (York University), “No One Shall Live: The Idea of Difficulty in Digital Games”
  • Bobby Schweizer (Georgia Institute of Technology), “Easy, Normal, Hard: Superficial Difficulty Settings in Videogames”
  • Nicholas Taylor (York University), “‘Technical Difficulties’: Expert MMOG Play as Assemblage”
  • Mariam Asad (Georgia Institute of Technology), “Proceduralizing Difficulty: Reflexive Play Practices in Masocore Games”

Wednesday, March 21, 2012 12:ooPM-1:45PM (Session B)

B5: “Reality,” Simulacras, and New Media
Chair: Courtney Baker (Connecticut College)

  • Jacob Hustedt (University of Texas, Austin), “‘A Dance of Signs’: Reflections on Public Executions, New Media, and the Death of Osama bin Laden”
  • Colleen Montgomery (University of Texas, Austin), “Cartoon Wasteland: The Aesthetics and Economics of Digitextuality in Disney’s Epic Mickey
  • Brent Fujioka (Brown University), “Snake Is Hiding: Cultural Hybridity, Pacifism, and Subversion In Hideo Kojima’s Metal Gear Solid Series”
  • Courtney Baker (Connecticut College), “Imprisoned Viewers: Prison Valley and the Simulacrum of Interaction”

Wednesday, March 21, 2012 2:00PM-3:45PM (Session C)

C8: A Million Screens a Medium Make? Thinking through Machinima and Filmmaking in Virtual Worlds

Chair: Jenna Ng (University of Cambridge)

  • Henry Lowood (Stanford University), “Machinima: A Documentary Medium?”
  • Sarah Higley (University of Rochester), “Inside and Outside: Machinima, Looking, and the Non-Diegetic Camera”
  • Peter Krapp (University of California, Irvine), “Economedia: Machinima and the Claims of Convergence”
  • Jenna Ng (University of Cambridge), “Three Spars of the Virtual Camera Trestle: Image, Mobility, Avatar”

Wednesday, March 21, 2012 04:00PM-05:45PM (Session D)

D16: Save to Continue: The State of Video Game Archiving and Preservation
Room: St. James
Chair: Matthew Payne (University of Alabama)
Workshop Participants:

  • Henry Lowood (Stanford University)
  • Ken McAllister (University of Arizona)
  • David O’Grady (University of California, Los Angeles)
  • Judd Ruggill (Arizona State University)
  • Megan Winget (University of Texas, Austin)

Thursday, March 22, 2012 11:00AM-12:45PM (Session F)

F16: Workshop on Cooperative Play, Multiplayer R&D: Encouraging Effective Collaboration in Games Research and Development

Chair: Nina Huntemann (Suffolk University)
Workshop Participants:

  • Mia Consalvo (Concordia University)
  • Darius Kazemi (bocoup)
  • Eric Gordon (Emerson College)
  • Bill Shribman (WGBH)
  • Sara Verrilli (MIT GAMBIT Game Lab)

Sponsor: Video Game Studies Scholarly Interest Group

Thursday, March 22, 2012 01:00PM-02:45PM (Session G)

G6: Gendering Fandoms: Exploring the Centrality of Gender and Sexuality to Fannish Practice
Room: Cabot
Chair: Darlene Hampton (University of Oregon)

  • Jing Zhao (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee), “Popular Cultural Capital Matters: A Comparative Study of ‘Queered’
  • Chinese Online Fandom”
  • Anne Gilbert (Rutgers University), “When Twilight Comes to Comic-Con: Gender Divisions in Popular Fandom”
  • John Vanderhoef (University of California, Santa Barbara), “Canon Fodder: Taste, Gender, and Video Game Culture”
  • Darlene Hampton (University of Oregon), “Pure Communities: The Radicalizing Potential of Intimacy in Fan Communities”

Thursday, March 22, 2012 03:00PM-04:45PM (Session H)

H7: Playing With Feelings 1: Video Games and Affect
Room: Cambridge
Chair: Aubrey Anable (University of Toronto)

  • Seth Mulliken (North Carolina State University, Raleigh), “The Order of Hardness: Rhythm-Based Games and Sonic Affect”
  • Laura Cook Kenna (George Washington University), “Feeling Empathetic? . . . Ironic? . . . Postracial?: Grand Theft Auto’s Offers of Affective Engagement with Ethnic and Racial Difference”
  • Allyson Shaffer (University of Minnesota, Twin Cities), “Playing Life, Managing Play”
  • Aubrey Anable (University of Toronto), “Casual Games, Serious Play, and the Affective Economy”

Thursday, March 22, 2012 05:00PM-06:45PM (Session I)

I11: Playing With Feelings 2: Medium, Immersion, and Affect
Room: Franklin
Chair: Daniel Reynolds (University of California, Santa Barbara)
Respondent: Mark J. P. Wolf (Concordia University, Wisconsin)

  • Daniel Reynolds (University of California, Santa Barbara), “Radical Embodiment and Affective Interactivity”
  • Virginia Kuhn (University of Southern California), “One More Time with Feeling: Can Agency and Immersion Co-exist?”
  • Chaz Evans (University of Illinois, Chicago), “The Brechtian Video Game (and Other Theatrical Conceptions of Software-based Experience)”

Friday, March 23, 2012 12:15PM-2:00PM (Session K)

Video Game Studies Special Interest Group

Friday, March 23, 2012 02:15PM-04:00PM (Session L)

L11: Code Studies and Videogames
Room: Franklin
Chair: Zach Whalen (University of Mary Washington)

  • Sheila Murphy (University of Michigan), “Parsing Code, Playing Games: A Mediation on Reading Video Games”
  • Mark Sample (George Mason University), “A Revisionist History of JFK Reloaded (Decoded)”
  • Zach Whalen (University of Mary Washington), “’//create magnetic children’: Game Code as Critical Paratext”
  • Christopher Hanson (Syracuse University), “Mapping Levels of Abstraction and Materiality: Structuralist Games?”

Saturday, March 24, 2012 9:00AM (Session M)

M11: Computer Games and Virtual Forms
Room: Franklin
Chair: Lori Landay, Berklee College of Music

  • Brent Strang (Stony Brook University), “Red Dead Remediation: Sandbox Games, Anti-environments and Digital Adolescence”
  • Juan F. Belmonte Avila (University of Murcia), “Tactility in Computer Games: Non-Visual Mediations in Digital Discourses”
  • Mark J. P. Wolf (Concordia University, Wisconsin), “BattleZone and the Origins of First-Person Shooting Games”
  • Lori Landay (Berklee College of Music), “Virtually There: Presence, Agency, Spectatorship, and Performance in Interactive Media”

Sponsor: Video Game Studies Scholarly Interest Group

Saturday, March 24, 2012 05:00PM-06:45PM (Session Q)

Q11: Video Game Industry Studies
Room: Franklin
Chair: Sheila Murphy (University of Michigan)
Co-Chair: Julia Lange (University of Michigan)
Respondent: Nina Huntemann (Suffolk University)

  • Benjamin Aslinger (Bentley University), “Redefining the Console for the Digital, Global, and Networked Era”
  • Kathryn Frank (University of Michigan), “Imagining the Cult Media Audience: Comics and Video Game Industrial ‘Synergy’”
  • Julia Lange (University of Michigan), “E3 or Not E3?: The Video Game Industry Online and In-person”

Q21: Beyond Strawmen, Misrepresentations, and Caricatures: Elucidating a Critical Political Economy of Media
Room: Whittier
Chair: Philip Drake (University of Stirling)
Respondent: Philippe Meers (University of Antwerp)

  • Eileen Meehan (Southern Illinois University, Carbondale), “The Misrepresentation of Critical Political Economy of Media”
  • Randall Nichols (Bentley University), “Manufacturing the Xbox: The Other Video Game Labor Problem”
  • Andre Sirois (University of Oregon), “Advertising and Avatars: Investing in Subcultural Capital and Selling Authenticity in the Case of DJ Hero”

Sunday, March 25, 2012 11:00AM-12:45PM (Session S)

S7: Video Games
Room: Cambridge
Chair: Robert Buerkle (University of Pittsburgh)

  • Reem Hilu (Northwestern University), “A Pioneering Game: “The Oregon Trail” and History Simulation”
  • Frank Episale (City University of New York), “Roger Ebert vs. Jacques Rancière: Video Games, Art, and the Emancipated Spectator”
  • Robert Buerkle (University of Pittsburgh), “At a Loss for Words: Portal 2 and the Silent Avatar”

[Downhill photograph courtesy of Flickr user krelle / Creative Commons Licensed]

5 thoughts on “Videogame Studies Panels at SCMS 2012”

  1. […] It is also wonderful for questions regarding sound and video game studies to emerge more prominently at SCMS, especially given their contemporary global cultural influence and the vibrancy of their sound design community, especially in the Twitterverse and via blogs like GameSound.  We are especially excited that Aubrey Anable’s panel on Thursday, March 22, 2012(3:00-4:45) offers us the chance to listen at the intersection of sound studies with the growing scholarship on affect and play, something dear to hearts and minds over here at SO! (see Aaron Trammell’s recent “Orality and Cybernetics in Battleship”).  Especially impressive is how the interventions of videogame scholarship are so fundamentally audio-visual, an articulation that took film studies many years—and even now still seems somewhat reluctant and tenuous. For a list of all video-game panels at SCMS, check the March 18th post from Sample Reality. […]

  2. You forgot one on Thursday, 11-12:45: Workshop: Encouraging Effective Collaboration in Games Research and Development, chaired by Nina Huntemann.

    1. I can’t believe I forgot this workshop, Mia! Especially since it’s a session I’m really looking forward to. It’s now in the list.

  3. Not a full panel, but missed my paper on “Genre Effects on Surround Sound Gaming” in K6, Sonic Approaches to Genre. Sadly our panel was scheduled during the Video Games SIG meeting, meaning (a) I couldn’t make it to the SIG meeting and (b) probably few game scholars got to hear my paper. For those interested, an expanded version is forthcoming as an anthology chapter in Oxford UP’s “Handbook of New Audiovisual Aesthetics.”

  4. […] studies. There is much happening and much to be done, some of which you can hear at the various games studies panels on the program at SCMS this week. I hope that the feminist media studies series at Antenna is a place where we can […]

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