Culture Cache

Culture CacheJerz’s Literacy Weblog)

Part of: Princeton
Video Game Conference
reflections.

“Culture” was in the title of the conference, but it was only obliquely discussed, as in Peter Bell’s “Hidden play,” an analysis of handheld gaming culture (as compared to cultural responses to the Sony Walkman); and Greg Lastowka’s “Virtual crimes,” which ponders the legal ramifications of actions that have economic consequences in the real world (as evidenced by the eBay auctions of cyberspace goods and services), unlike the social transgressions examined by sociologists working in MUDs and MOOs. I felt Tevis Thompson’s hymn to the action of jumping in “Tevis Thompson / But our princess is in another castle: towards a ‘close-playing’ of ‘Super Mario Bros.'” was very useful to me, particularly since since Joust was the last jumping game that I really enjoyed). My own paper dealt, in part, with the manner in which the culture of the Cave Research Foundation (the organization through Will Crowther explored the real Colossal Cave) influenced “Colossal Cave Adventure,” though in the time I had, I only managed to touch indirectly on how caving may have affected the history of game design.