Gold Farming

Stumbled accross this great article about goldfarming in The journalist actually met a gold farmer for an interview. Very interesting read!!! Also brings up an interesting question; if people are being paid (with sweat shop wages) to produce virtual money are they then playing the game?!! Love it!!! Enjoy!!! ;))

Children of the revolution

(Trying something new here, writing then adding links, so if you read this before…sorry…links coming soon)Being brought up in the ‘music needs parental guidance’ era, I’m quite amused and touched that so many gamers are logging on and protesting about the dreaded Jack Thompson. I’m also thinking that the music censorship that my generation encountered enraged us so fiercely that we feel for these kids (or of course that we’re still kids anyway). I read a really good article Duke Ferris in Game Evolution that reminded me of this!
I remember the frustration of being told that I couldn’t listen to Judas Priest, cause as a kid, I was so stupid that I would kill myself, at least that’s what people like Nancy Reagan were telling me (my parents trusted me). So I’m now wondering if these kids are being heard. Are they just being ignored cause they’re under 18, and have no right to an opinion, or I guess I should say, right to vote?
They are vocal! They’re very vocal, indeed and they’re angry! I actually spent time reading a blog where lots had been lashed out to Jack Thompson, (introduced to me by Dagbladet) and it was definately worth the read. And I’ve been cruising around different blogs and also talking to a few under 18s in TSO.
I have to come with a BUT, however. Firstly….I understand their frustration and their anger, and I love that we live in an age where blogging exists and they can vent out their feelings and find others to discuss them with. But I don’t think this is the way to reach the Jack Thompsons and Hillary Clintons of the world, they will never take them seriously or in fact listen! So here’s what I’m thinking….should we try and form an organisation for gamers? An organisation that can do their own lobbying in government? An organisation that fights for the right to play? Leak all the positive stories about gaming to the press, participate in intellectual debate, get senators in our pockets? I’m sure there are plenty of lobbyists for the gaming industry…but what about gamers…don’t they have rights too?

Espen Aarseth

I don’t know why the hell I haven’t started listing papers by Espen Aarseth on this blog before! Cause he really is my hero!! But starting to list some of his papers here on the right. Need his permission before I list a few of them however!
The man is a genious for anyone doing research in this field! Insightful and he makes analytical thinking seem so bloody easy it can be annoying at times!
Also including Richard Bartle’s classification of players.

The Lawsuits are a comin’!

Yup! The lawsuits are just pooring in now!!!! reports of a grandma suing Rockstar for GTA ‘coverup’.
First of all….I think it very strange that grandmas and parents are buying these kids, GTA – because they believe them mature enough.

My personal favorite from Dallas News is:

Lauren Charbonneau didn’t worry about purchasing Grand Theft Auto:
San Andreas for her son, Luke, in October when he was 11. Luke is
“pretty mature”, his mother says. She figured he could handle an M-
rated video game.
Luke says he never accessed the hidden scenes, but the news of their
existence upset his mother. “I’m shocked and angry,” says Ms.
Charbonneau, 47, of Plano. “They deceived the public.”
The article is quite well, written however, cause they also found parent’s who have questioned the content before and don’t understand how these sex scenes can be worse.
But I’m suprised to see how some parents are thinking about this rating system. I mean…if theyt’re JUST turned 11 year old is getting something meant for adults….what the hell is the point really? Which brings me again to question this bill they’re trying to pass on the manufacturers being responsible for sales towards underage children.
I don’t know! I’m very glad that I don’t have children and I won’t have to think too much about it. But I do feel that adult games are fun….and I think they do society a hell of a lot of good! I really don’t doubt that for a second. But kids…I’m not sure. I’m talking about the violence here, ofcourse. Sex….hell! Jeez! There’s been stuff available for kids for centuries….they’re curious and they’re gonna find access to porn somehow!
And here’s another thing….are we writing too much about this? Are we too enthusiastic about the ridiculousness of it all? Are we playing right into the lobyists’ for censorship’s hands?

Why ludology isn’t good for analysing MMORPGs!

I’ll see if I’ll bother coming back and editing this post and elaborating….but just in the middle of reading a paper on game studies I had a little idea or thought! You can’t use ludology to analyse MMORPGs, cause there is no way of designing the game play!!! There’s no way MAXIS could have predicted what the actual game playing aspect of their game became! People are taking the game play rules and creating stories!!!!!!!!!!!! Oh dear lord….I’m such a narratologist!!!

It’s just porn, MOM!

Well….it’s not like we were expecting this not to happen after the Hot Coffee incident! Now an American (of course!) attorney called Jack Thompson is claiming that The Sims 2 is just as bad! He’s making claims that it’s a pedofile’s wet dream (how?….I’m really not sure). Now Jeff Brown from EA, has made some interesting comments as well, about how you must be terrible good with script to download patches…and so on. But then again…it’s not the first time he’s taken the ‘ignorance is bliss’ road, and I’m starting to think that it might be the best way!

What are we to do with these people? Naked Sims encouraging pedofilia? Oh dear oh dear oh dear! The only thing I can hope is that the politicians, industry and lawyers will close their eyes and just let it drift away. But we’re beyond that now, aren’t we? So is this the beginning of the end or the end of the beginning?

Government reallocating responsibilty yet again!

So…I started finding some sites for my next post in this blog and stumbled across House Bill 2178, which has completely passed by me! Are you freakin kidding me? Is this law really suggesting that the game manufacturer should be responsible for a person’s sanity? What’s next? Authors responsible for their reader’s actions? This is just scary! Specially for the artistic freedom for future games! I suppose I should just be thankful that it doesn’t contain any words like nudity and sex!

The Edge

I’m just having a day full of wonderful discoveries (yes….avoiding things I really should be doing, of course)! I’ve discovered The Edge and I can’t believe I haven’t noticed it before!!!! It’s amazing! They have a theory of a third culture, combining intellectuals (or literary scholars) and scientists…..this is reminding me so much of what’s going on academically in Game Studies. But this site is just amazing!!! They’ve got Kevin Kelly answering the question of “Can computers achieve everything the human mind can achieve?” with “Computers can’t, but the children of computers will!” And then there’s a guy called Richard Foreman who runs a theater called ‘Ontological-Hysteric Theater’ contributing as well!!! Isn’t that just the most fabulous name for a theater….definately want to go there some day!
But yeah….very cool site…and I dare to say that they’re all futurists and are trying to discuss topics across whatever spectrums. Fascinating thoughts and some really interesting members of, what they call, “The Reality Club” (I just love cyber nerd humor!!!!). Definately worth a visit…it may get a bit too technological and scientific for me at times, but that’s ok! I’m learning aren’t I?

Other Than War

Been reading a bit about the US Department of Defense Game Developer’s Community and just thought I’d share a tiny little laugh with you! I think, Cyberwar XXI is trying to tell me that there’s also democratic options in the game…by using this magnificent thing OOTW (Other than War) situations, actually….they must be thinking of Iraq…aren’t they? Not democracy! Duh! I’m such a fool!
Anyways…my point being…leave it to the Americans to find such an idiotic expression OOTW, and what on earth is the other O there for!!!

The Long Now

“The Golden Age of dead media, most of them with the working lifespan of a pack of Twinkies!” – Bruce Sterling

I found these words on a fascinating new website I found. Well….Ren Reynolds mentioned it when contemplating cyberlife after rl death

It’s the Clock of the Long Now

Absolutely fascinating!!! Unfortunately…I drank a bit too much wine last night, so my head isn’t working as it should be and I need to read through the site a few times to figure out what the hell it’s all about! But DEFINATELY media theory related and quite technological deterministic as well!
Either way fascinating. It’s basically about how digitization is ruining our future! And, in my hung over opinion, they’re saying that the digital world has maybe made it easier to document information but not to preserve it properly. And without history, how can you have a future? Oh hell!! Just enter the site…believe me, it’s fascinating!
“When I was a child, people used to talk about what would happen by the year 2000. For the next thirty years they kept alking about what would happen by the year 2000, and now no one mentions a future date at all. The future has been shrinking by one year per year for my entire life. I think it is time for us to satrt a long-term project that gets people thinking past the mental barrier of an ever shortening future. I would like to propose a large (think Stonehenge) mechanical clock, powered by seasonal temperature changes. It ticks once a year, bongs once a century, and the cuckoo comes out every millennium!” – Daniel Hillis

And they’re actually doing it!!!!! They’re building this clock! Amazing….!