Have you ever wanted to be in a band? To play in front of a live audience and be showered with love and admiration? Whether you know how to play instruments or not here is an opportunity to participate in a musical competition of epic proportions! Battle of the Rock Band is a tournament featuring the video game Rock Band in which bands will compete against each other for prizes and glory.
WHERE: Room 123 (aka the Great Room) of The Global Scholars Hall
WHEN: Saturday, May 24th.Competitions begins @ 8:30pm (Optional Rehearsal @ 7:00pm)
To compete in the Battle of the Rock Bands, your band must have 1-4 members, righteous showmanship, and a radical band name. Sign up your band online at http://bit.ly/QWm8uC and get ready to rock! Also join the Facebook event page and invite your friends: https://www.facebook.com/events/633590163389503/
An available song list for Think.Play’s copy of Rock Band will be posted on the Facebook event page and the Think.Play website prior to the competition.
March 1st, 11am-3pm LLC South Performance Hall
[11:00 am – 12:30pm] The Panel
Conventions of Gender in Minecraft
Iris Bull, School of Journalism and Communications
This paper explores the perimeters of gender and sexuality in Minecraft (Mojang 2012) through a textual analysis of the “vanilla” (i.e. unmodified) PC version of the game. I describe how the genderless design of the game’s only default character, “Steve,” reproduces a masculinist fantasy on the frontier or homestead of a player’s choosing. By elucidating the problematic nature of gendered conventions in Minecraft, this paper demonstrates how genderless worlds ultimately limit feminist imaginations.
Performing Love and Labor: Intersections of Work and Sexuality in an Online Girl Game
Kelsey Cummings, School of Journalism and Communications
Popular culture has long been involved in the teaching of gender performance to its young audiences. In particular, representations of sexuality and romance play a key role in demonstrating to children how different modes of gender performance, influenced by class, race, and other identity types, should intersect with one another according to the dominant paradigm. In this paper, I will analyze how gameplay mechanics in an online “girl game” genre reinforce a particular form of encouraged gender performance, in which women’s sexuality is understood as a form of labor. I look at the “Jennifer Rose” games, which combine occupational and romance game models to equate women’s love and sexuality with work.
WiiFat: American Genealogies of Fascist Japanese Calisthenics Remediated
Bryce Peake, School of Journalism and Communications
This paper examines the history of exercise that gave way to Japanese conceptions of the social function of Wii Fit—a device that has so easily fit within the fat shaming culture of the United States. Historical in nature, it traces a surprising history that leads back not to some idealized fascist Japanese state, but from the Japanese postal service to the United States itself.
[12:30 – 1:00pm] Lunch Break
[1:00 – 1:30pm] Workshop: Hacking the Kinect, Oculus Rift with John Park
[1:30 – 2:15pm] Play Session: Oculus Rift & Kinect Demo; Free-Play Game Stations; Game Club Tabling;
Poster: Game Design and Place-Based Education
Alicia Kristen, Environmental Studies
Through the lens of place-based pedagogies, I am exploring how ethnoecological knowledge, attitudes, and skills in the Eugene youth community and among environmental leaders in order to inform my content. I am constructing storyboards for diverse quests within a game framework that integrate locally relevant content & practices. I will then take one chain of quests and develop it into a prototype using a mobile augmented-reality technology platform. Finally, I will pilot the prototype and evaluate user response.
My poster will visually synthesize data on applicable principles of game design and their relationship to place-based education in Eugene. It will also include a sample of quest-chain summaries, and one quest-chain displayed as it would appear on players’ mobile devices. QR codes will allow visitors to sample content on their mobile devices.
[2:15 – 3:00pm] Open Forum: The Emerald League hosts an informal discussion about TwitchPlaysPokemon
There is a lot of overlap between sports culture and games culture. I encourage you to attend this lecture and think about the ways in which the “Other” and Whiteness are constructed in both realms. – Iris
Dr. Cornel Pewewardy (Comanche-Kiowa), Director of Indigenous Nations Studies at Portland State University, will give a lecture and workshop entitled, “Examining Colonizing Symbols in Sports Culture: Unpacking the Possessive Investment in Whiteness” on Thursday, February 27, 2014, from 11am-1pm in the Knight Library Browsing Room. Light refreshments will be served.
Dr. Pewewardy will also hold a small conversation/workshop for interested graduate students on Thursday, February 27, 2014 from 3:30-5:00pm in the CoDaC offices in the basement of Susan Campbell Hall. The conversation, entitled “Decolonizing Methodologies,” will likely speak to those who approach research from ethnic studies, critical race theory, Indigenous studies, or environmental/social justice frameworks. However, all interested graduate students are encouraged to attend. Light refreshments will be available at this event as well.
Founded in Spring 2011, Think.Play is a student-run group at the UO that highlights academic discussion of video games and video game culture. Think.Play hosts weekly meetings in the Knight Library where students are encouraged to take part in intellectual discourse. The Think.Play Steering Committee would like to announce plans to host an academic conference at the University of Oregon on March 1st.
We invite students, faculty, staff, and community members to submit proposals for panels, workshops, and papers that consider the topics of video game culture, production and consumption. We seek proposals that demonstrate a central thesis, from any and all disciplines, and especially those works that consider video game play, distribution, and development in Oregon. We also welcome submissions that propose a demonstration of video game-themed works of art for a one-hour poster session.
Possible proposal topics might be:
– video games based on television shows and/or movies
– the circulation of video games in public library collections
– representations of gender in Minecraft
– intersections of video games and porn studies
– an explanation of bloom lighting in relation to video game graphics
– militarization of video games
– ethnography and video game communities
– discovering sub-culture community through game play
– breaking into the gaming industry
– cyberbullying in online games
– representations of race in Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games
– independent video game production in Oregon
– hacking, modding, and homebrewing video games
– finding mobility in virtual environments
– the transport of mobile gaming to African communities
– language and localization in video game distribution
– the used video game distribution market in 2014
– race and music in dancing games
– bar-cades and the cultural resurgence of arcade game play
– world-building in games
– games as a platform for education and learning
– applications of motion sensing technology specific to gaming
– artificial intelligence design for enemies in 2D scrolling video games
– video games and object-oriented programming languages
…anything else related to video games!
The deadline for submissions is 11:59 PM (Pacific) on Friday, February 7, 2014. Please submit all proposals to http://bit.ly/1mcmxSx
Individual Papers: Individuals submitting paper proposals should provide an abstract of 250 words of the topic and contact information. A paper presentation should run no more than 20 minutes with 10 minutes for discussion.
Pre-Constituted Panel Proposals: Panel coordinators should submit a 200-word rationale for the panel as whole. For each contributor, please submit a 250-word abstract, a short bio, and contact information. Panels should include 3-4 participants and should expect to run between 60-90 minutes.
Workshop Proposals: We seek workshop ideas that focus on video games scholarship and matters of professional game development. Topics might include: local indie-game development collaboration, art and motion-sensing technology, programming and mentoring, games development networking, indie-game publishing, etc.
Coordinators should submit a 350-word rationale (including some discussion of why the topic lends itself to a workshop format), a short bio, and contact information. For each workshop participant, please submit a title, short bio, and contact information. Workshops are intended to encourage discussion; contributors should plan on a series of brief, informal presentations.
Poster Presentations: We also welcome submissions that propose a demonstration of video game-themed works of art or game demonstrations for a one-hour poster session.
Proposal Deadline: Feb. 7th (Friday)
Notification Deadline: Feb. 9th (Sunday)
Conference Program Draft: Feb. 10th (Monday)
Event: Mar 1st (Saturday)
Please direct all questions about the conference and the submission process to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Laura Barbour, Iris Bull, Tessa Freeland, Cory Ingram, Patrick Lee, Ana Dor Lind, Jon Paull, Rebecca Tobe
Think.Play has just concluded the Autumnal Triathlon of 2013, our big end-of-the-term event!
The Steering Committee toiled over the Triathlon for the last month or so. Like last spring, we partnered with the Global Scholars Hall to host the event. The Global Scholars Hall Government donated $75 for drinks and snacks again to help weary bodies dance, solve puzzles, and crash cars. Big City Gamin’ and Pegasus Pizza generously donated prizes for the winningest players. Over 30 people came together tonight to compete collaboratively in three events:
- Just Dance (Wii): Highest Combined Score
- Pokemon Puzzle League (Wii): Highest Combined Score in Team Timed Event
- Burnout 2 (PS2): Highest Damage ($) Attributed in Multi-Car Collision (Crash Mode)
|Oretachi||Emily and Lauren|
|Grumps||Zack “Grump” Prichard and James “Not-So-Grump” Poling|
|Team Blitzkrieg||Shadwick and Steven|
|Megiliza||Megan and Eliza|
|Science Rash||Jon Paull and Iris Bull|
|The Dream Team||Ali and Patrick|
|Team Rocket||Cory Ingram and Laura Barbour|
|The Hobbits||Rebecca Tobe and Tessa Freeland|
|Supasupe||Avante and Kendall|
|Platypus Ninjas||Alex and Ana|
|Sidalex||Sid and Alex Mayer|
Teams were ranked against each other in each event. To determine the most “winningest” team, rankings in the three categories were summed.
|Team Name||Just Dance||Pokemon||Burnout||Sum Total||Ranking|
|The Dream Team||10||5||3||18||5th
The top (or lowest, however you look at it) 4 teams got to choose from 4 possible prize packages that split pizza gift certificates and Big City Gamin’ gift certificates. 3 other gift certificates were raffled for other attendees that did not place in the top 4, but Iris and Jon of team Science Rash forfeited their Big City Gamin’ gift certificate so that 4 people could win certificates in the raffle. Raffle winners were determined by lining participants up, assigning everyone a number, and then using an app to randomly choose winning numbers.
Everyone on the Steering Committee is so grateful for everyone’s contributions to the event—it turned out to be a fantastic pre-finals break!
Hi ho everybody, Jennifer here. For anybody who didn’t make it to October 2nd’s meeting and wishes they had, or for those who did and want to relive it all over again, we have this handy-dandy recording. And if that’s not enough, there are slides too! We had a great time talking about translation, rebranding, redubbing, and all the other things that happen when a game is repackaged for the great wide yonder of foreign markets. It can be tough for the motherland to cut the apron strings, but she knows it’s a necessary sacrifice if her baby is to grow up strong, happy, and internationally profitable.
In the process of researching for the talk, I turned up oodles of links, way too much information to cram into the discussion, so allow me to upend my collection onto your metaphorical desk. Enjoy the mess.
Audio Atrocities, an ever-expanding compendium of the worst voice acting games have to offer. Consider yourself warned.
Kotaku: The Surprising Ways Japanese Games Are Changed for Americans and companion article Found in Translation
And proof it’s not just me who finds Pokemon names oddly pharmaceutical: Sporcle: Drug or Pokemon?
Professionals on the Process
An Inside Look at Video Game Localization (Thaís Castanheira, Gengo Translation Services). In Part I, she talks about assisting with the Portuguese version of Assassin’s Creed: Revelations. In Part II, she gives tips to developers on how not to muck up the localization process.
Generations and Game Localization (interview with pro localizers/translators Alexander O. Smith, Steven Anderson, and Matthew Alt in Eludamos)
Official blog of LAI (Language Automation, Inc.)
PAX East 2011 localization panel
22 Tips for Better Game Localization (Epic Sound Audio Production)
Localization for Game Development (Joseph Stankowicz)
The big cheese in the world of localization studies is arguably Miguel Bernal-Merino, professor of media translation at the University of Roehampton in London. Seriously, he shows up everywhere: A Brief History of Game Localization, On the Translation of Video Games, Localization and the Cultural Concept of Play, Challenges in the Translation of Video Games
Things by people who are not Señor Bernal-Merino:
Creating Cross-Cultural Appeal in Digital Games (Mark Chen et al., slides of a presentation given by UW’s Digital Games Research Group)
Unleashing Imagination with Restricted Translation (Carmen Mangiron and Minako O’Hagan, The Journal of Specialized Translation)
Game Localization Management: Balancing Linguistic Quality and Financial Efficiency, (Michaela Bartelt-Kranz, Trans)
Cultural Localization: Orientation and Disorientation in Japanese Video Games (Francesca di Marco, Revista Tradumàtica)
Videogame Localization and Thing Theory (Jon Corliss, Columbia University)
Localization of Digital Games: The Process of Blending for the Global Games Market (Alexander Thayer and Beth E. Kolko, Technical Communication)
Pokemon, Localization, and Cultural Odor (Chris Bubb, Post Bubble Culture, a College of William & Mary blog on contemporary Japanese culture)