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Video Game Worlds: Working at Play in the Culture of Everquest Paperback – 31 Oct 2011

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"A tour de force that will redefine how social scientists look at computer mediated interaction in general, and especially the logics and perspectives of gamers in particular. This is an amazing study of the merging of the social and the social virtual worlds, joined through media formats. This work will challenge the entertainment logic, formats, and values that constitute standard game platforms that undergird much of the industry. His analysis of how the virtual world reflects and amends everyday life perspectives about competition and competence reveals much about the social order of justice in a virtual world."--David L. Altheide, Regents' Professor, Arizona State University

About the Author

Timothy Rowlands is currently a post-doctoral researcher with the School of Social Transformation at Arizona State University. He researches online communities and the potential they have for creating spaces in which people construct, re-invent and negotiate online identities. His work crosses the disciplinary boundaries of sociology, anthropology, communications, cultural studies and new media studies while focusing on the shaping of virtual selves. His research utilizes traditional qualitative approaches such as ethnographic and interview methods while applying them to studies of online spaces and communities. At the same time, he brings a deep commitment to texts through his emphasis on in situ semiotics.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 2 reviews
This is an excellent book. I am a researcher writing on the ... 8 Mar. 2015
By Hold_On_Steady - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is an excellent book. I am a researcher writing on the topic of MMORPGs, and this is the best source I have come across. It is erudite yet grounded and accessible. The author's analysis is thought-provoking and compelling.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Enjoyable and insightful 12 Feb. 2012
By Lefty - Published on
Format: Paperback
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."
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