Fake Virtual Reality

Ever informative, Clickable Culture has a post on a ‘Second Life’ fashion show that’s to be hosted and produced by MTV for ‘Overdrive’. So I stopped by Overdrive to have a little look and I felt bombarded by ‘hype’ and so many hip words, I really couldn’t tell you what they’re going on about. MTV still hasn’t been able to rid itself of the high blood pressure desperation of clinging to hippness of American youth and I’m reminded of why they lost their ‘coolness’ in my time! Or maybe I’m just too old and un-american for MTV? Possibly.

Anyways….I just had to post this wonderful comment:

I love this! It seems from my naiv point of view that Mr. Walsh feels that an MTV hosted fashion show will misrepresent Second Life. That it will make the world seem more flashier and spectacular and future players will be disappointed when they move to Second Life for it won’t be as glorious as MTV showed it to be! Well isn’t this interesting…and I have to say…quite sweet really. Just as MTV has earlier showed fake ‘real life’ they’re now to show fake ‘virtual reality’ – which I find somwhat ironic since most MTV watchers I know, only watch it for the ‘reality’ programs.

My own personal opinion? If anyone’s going to bring avatar life to the tvscreen successfully, it sure as hell ain’t MTV! And I think it’s so interesting that we’re thinking of how tv producers can misrepresent the reality of virtual worlds, but that just may be my nerdy humour taking control of my fingers again!!

Merry Christmas

I’ve been trying my best to delay Christmas a week, but time, it seems is not on my side!
So what should my first ever Christmas post for this blog be? Shall I share with you my frustrations of Christmas shopping and tell you that Spiderman is the best place to shop for computer games in Bergen? Or shall I maybe introduce you to a few hillarious articles about “How to Shop for a gamer”? Maybe I should give you my take on the best games of the year? Which seems pointless when my current favourite is 2000’s American Mcgee’s Alice. Or shall I introduce you to some great free Christmas games? And not free games?

Or maybe I should tell you about great things to do in Bergen at Christmas? Or the best way to decorate a Christmas tree? Or create a nerdy Christmas quiz about myself?

Or how about this… to all of you who found yourself linked in this post, Merry Christmas!! Thanks for some amazing reading and news this year!! You’re all entertaining and informative writers, don’t know where I’d be without you! (maybe finished with my thesis?)

Merry Christmas all and to anyone else dropping by my blog, its an honour to have you as a reader!

Pulmonary thrombo-embolism

Yup…this seems to be the name for what’s killing online gamers. According to Eoh Gi-jun, the head of the Korea Computer Life Institute (the what institute?!!!), online games have more competition stress, than the games of the 80s, so people can’t stop playing. Dr. Song Hyeong-gon of Samsung Seoul Hospital’s Emergency Department says “Because they are stressed by the obsession with winning the game, they consume a considerable amount of energy. In such a physically exhausted condition, exposure to bright colors or stimulating images on the screen is likely to irritate the cerebral cortex and can cause sudden death”, reported in Chosun Ilbo.
According to Terra Nova blogger, Mike Sellers pulmonary thromboembolism ‘is a blood clot blocking the pulmonary arteries (those leading from the heart to the lungs)’, which pretty much tells me very little of what gaming has to do with anything, as he rightfully points out.
‘Exhaustion’s a word that comes to my medically ignorant mind, which I presume can happen by doing anything several days on end! I’m much more stunned that Korea has a Computer Life Institute – will have to investigate that a bit further (huh…don’t I say that in every blogpost?). But dear readers, do not distress!!! Our savior has come, Playlimit, which GamePolitics amusingly call the gamer chastity belt! I can’t wait to see what game gamers are going to create from this device…for they will you know! He he!

Women and Online Gaming

I’ve just added T.L. Taylor’s “Multiple Pleasures. Women and Online Gaming” to my Paper’s list her on the right. I’ve only skimmed through it so far, so no chance of a breakdown.

It occurs to me, however, that this is a part of my TSO experience I really haven’t discussed on this blog. Although there seems to be an influx of women moving in to MMORPGs, TSO is and always has been mainly populated by women. Pretty much 5 females to 1 male player. And I’ve encountered so many amusing stories when it comes to gender. I suppose one that stands out, has to be when I met a group of male homosexual players. First of all they were just great fun to talk to and so extremely refreshing. I suppose refreshing, because sometimes ‘talk’ in TSO was so extremely claustrophobically lovey dovey sweet and to meet people who actually understood irony and had a sense of humour was just heaven! But one of these homosexuals had a sense of bitterness and was very sensitive indeed. He told me that he hated the way he could become friends with a woman, get along with her beautifully and when he told her that he was gay, she would become upset, mad and ‘dump’ him. This had apperantly happened to him often. I was very suprised. I was sure that when he was going to explain to me how discriminating TSO’ers were, he would tell me how the males would react to his homosexuality, not the women. Which I suppose got me thinking about why women play TSO. To find a mate? It just seemed so ridiculous to me. But most people that I met in-game had some story of love and betrayal that had emerged in-game but had overflowed to their ‘real’ life. I mean the place was just overflowing with them. Two people finding each other in-game and then meeting in real-life and the DRAMA!! Soap opera has absolutely nothing on TSO players! But is this what attracts female players? I really don’t want it to be. And I honestly don’t think that it is, either.
TSO is generally a REALLY boring game in itself and I suppose this is why such drama occurs. The same reason that TSO’ers create their own imaginative entertainment and games, is the same reason why drama occurs. But why do women choose to play this game?


Wow…I really should consider making an ‘events’ thing on this blog!

There’s a festival in Greece September 27 – October1 next year, which looks absolutely brilliant. Grand Text Auto has posted a call for papers and games! The topics are pretty vast and it seems like they’re going to cover absolutely everything that’s ‘hot’ with gaming these days, but that’s definately not a bad thing!

I just may have to try handing something in here! Hmmmmm…..what to write about!!

Nordic Game Jam

The ludoligist Jesper Juul has helped to create a Game Jam in Copenhagen January 27-29, 2006. Nordic Game Jam‘s slogan is “Challenge Yourself: Create A Cooperative Multiplayer Game in A Weekend”. It all looks terribly exciting and fun!
I shouldn’t, but I’d really love to go! I can’t think of a better way to learn what the ‘real’ components of games are! And I think that there might be a few people here that would want to go as well. What do you guys say? Should we create a Bergen team?

Myth vs truth on computer games

The fabulous Henry Jenkins offers a rebuttal towards 8 video game myths circulating in the media. First one being “The availability of video games has led to an epidemic of youth violence” – which he blows out of the water with his usual intelligent and factual charisma! It’s a good read, straight to the point and should be a ‘must read’ for any parent!
I am, however, quite wary that crusaders fighting against the bad image of video games never confront the addiction argument. Could it be that it’s because we know it’s a problem?
Christmas is here, which means several family get-togethers! I love these, because I always have a chance to have some great discussions with the kids in my family on gaming! I remember last Christmas, I had a conversation with a 12 year old on video game violence and the impact it has on children his age. He was quite adamant that it had absolutely no impact on him whatsoever, but he understood that it might have a bad effect on other children. After some patient digging, with lots of “Why?” and “Who exactly?” we finally came to the conclusion that he only thought this, because he had been told by media that violent computer games are bad for children. I thought it was very interesting! Can’t wait to hastle them this year!

Are MMOs completely free of all ‘reallife’ law?

So here’s something new, at least to me! Sociolotron, that, from what I can gather is an S&M MMORPG. Just to enter their website you have to agree to a disclaimer, which I thought was quite interesting:

  • 3) You are not offended by reading about a highly politically incorrect form of rolepley involving sexually explicit situation, roleplay of crimes, vamipirism, demonism and any other adult fantasy.
  • 4) You will leave the site or quit playing the game if you encounter any topic that offends you.
  • 6) You are not employed in law enforcement acting in any way in connection with your duties or what you see as your responsibilities as law enforcement

4 and 6 just blew my mind away! Firstly they tell you to leave a place you pay to be in if you’re offended – which seems kinda bizarre…but I’ll come back to that because they actually have a government! But nr. 6…is that possible? Can you actually just say “Hey! All ‘real’ government keep out!”?

Hmmm…makes me wish I had some internet game content lawbook implanted in my head! I’m gonna have to look this up and investigate further!! I really should have the answers to these questions by now!

TerraNova has a post (which gruesomly reminds me that I haven’t been by the State of Play III proceedings properly yet) about a Supreme Court ruling entailing child pornography laws in games. I’m really suprised that this seems to be the ‘main issue’ when discussing ‘real’ life laws, especially after the stuff that’s going on in Korea. I was also extremely numbed by the comment: “Considering that so often when people talk about the “magic circle” and the need to keep laws out of games…”! Really?!! This has just passed me by! I’m presuming they’re talking about Zimmerman and Salen’s ‘magic circle’ and I’ve completely dismissed this idea when it comes to MMORPGs! Probably extremely foolishly but I’ve really tried to put the gameplay of MMORPGs within a ‘magic circle’ and after a few frustrating tears and some good conversations with Klabbers, I’ve come to the conclusion that it can’t be done!!! Hmmm…wondering if I’m answering my own dreaded question here. Maybe that’s just it…MMORPGs are virtual worlds that include gameplay, but aren’t necessarily games? Which kinda brings me back to the MMORPGs are social playgrounds not games metaphor.

Huh…well…it’s 3 o’clock in the morning and my braincells might not be up to standard…wondering if I’ll feel the same tomorrow or if this is all more jibberish! And I’m feeling so unbelievably ashamed for not being up to date on this!! Ooohhh…but it’s so good to have a blog to talk to! ;)

|-|@|*|*`/ |}1|2+|-|[)@`/ del.icio.us i1277

Well…at least I think it’s today(or in 2 hours at least (12 December)….sorry, I’m unconnected at home and can’t do this tomorrow morning)! And before you guys start correcting me on my leet speak, I’m fully aware that ‘del.icio.us’ is not a 1337 word, but it just fits i1277 so freakin’ well! And yeah…I’m not going to boast knowing what the hell I’m on about…it’s just not going to happen! Just found this translation site…and thought I’d try it out!