Tim Rowlands book is a tour de force; it is one of the most creative studies of multi-player games (Everquest and World of Warcraft). This work will be the signature work for several decades for researchers as well as the gaming industry. He understands how various prosocial platforms can attract players. As a veteran player of these--and many other--games, Rowlands research questions were related to his interest in social justice and the interaction between virtual and real discursive practice in constructing social orders.
The study design analyzed the game itself as a document, but also included several years of field notes that were collected as a player, as well as rich ethnographic descriptions of typical scenarios, roles, tactics, styles of dress and play, including hierarchical social organization and social control. He also conducted online interviews with various players, and face-to-face interviews with local participants.This work, along with critical reading of mythology,contributed to a creative understanding of online "fun and games."