Daily Archives: January 30, 2004

I’m Dreaming of a White Dungeon

Since the weather here is frightful, I thought I would give a little update on my reading material.

I finished Dungeons & Dreamers recently and found it to be interesting and entertaining, if a bit scattered in its focus. Like Masters of Doom, it is a non-academic historical look at gaming, with particular interest paid to RPG’s specifically the role that Dungeons and Dragons and the Ultima series had in the development of videogaming.

I might write up a formal review for Reconstruction, the web journal that published me last review, so I won’t go into too much detail here. Let me just say that I found the first half that focused on Garriot to be very interesting and once it moved away from him I found it to be rather fragmented in focus and not nearly as personal or as interesting. It is a good light read and fun. I think I would recommend Masters of Doom over it. However, that may be simply due to my stronger interest in FPS games than RPGs.

I study things that people actually do

Over at Thinking With My Fingers, there is a post about academics having to justify their research. I must be pretty lucky. I really don’t recall ever having to justify studying videogames and people who play them. Maybe it is a matter of being in the right academic climates. I really do not see how I should have to justify my research when I run into people studying 17th century left handed poets.

People are playing videogames at this very moment. Can people who are resistant to videogame research say the same thing about their work? Are people spending hours a day engaging with it?

As I always seem to do in questions like this, rather than attempt to justify something which seems infinitely more relevant than 75% of the things I see going on at most universities, I have to ask why people care what other people think of their research. Basically, if you don’t like what I’m doing based soley on the principle that it is not a valid subject, then there is a pretty damn good chance that I think you are an elitist ass and your opinion doesn’t matter to me anyway. While I love being in school, there are certainly enough elitist snobs here, they can go hang out with each other, they don’t need to bother me.

Now, if you don’t like my work because you think it is inferior or flawed or just plain bad work, but the subject material is valid, that is another matter. I make no claims to my work being good, just valid and relevant.