Meaningful Play 2022 at Michigan State University

Paper Information

TitleCan we interpret games separately from their makers? Making meaningful games in unsafe spaces
Presenter(s)Ahu Yolac and Jenna Perkin
SessionMeaningful Analyses of Meaningful Games 2
TimeFriday, October 14, 11:30a-12:30p
LocationMSU Room
FormatPaper Presentation
DescriptionIn this extended abstract, we focus on assessing critical and meaningful play from a holistic lens by including the "making processes and experiences" within games. We consider designers, artists, and developers as the 'makers' of games. We first highlight the historical view on art and design, where the final product is typically considered separately from its maker and their identity. Then, we challenge this approach and its implications for games, claiming that it hinders creating inclusive spaces for all players and developers -- regardless of gender, sexual orientation, or race. Finally, we discuss two games, Florence and Night in the Woods as examples of how such a separation might cause overlooking issues associated with maker experiences. We conclude with an invitation for having maker experiences included in the assessment and interpretation of games, especially if we do not want to repeat the discriminatory practices of visual art history.

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