Through the design mechanics of their explicit and implicit rule systems, their fictional worlds and objects that inhabit them, and the particular forms of (in-ter)action they invite players to engage in, digital games manage to involve large numbers of players for extended periods of time in forms of play, either alone or together with others. At the same time, they allow players to enter or leave the game at any time, and to decide from moment to moment whether they are willing to accept the consequences of following, or not following, the game rules as they play. These factual realities of gaming activities alone create a considerable poten-tial for negotiable real world consequences for players, depending on how serious-ly they take the experiential and other outcomes of games they play, the amount of time they spend playing, and whether or not real world material, economic or oth-er cultural values are at stake for them while playing, winning or losing a game, and so on. If we are willing to accept that playing computer games is a real world activity with potential real life consequences for players – i.e. that there may exist experi-enceable, meaningful effects of play activity that are mutually recognisable, inter-subjectively negotiable and ethically appraisable in relation to known systems of cultural values – then why can we not simply say that the fictional worlds generat-ed by these advanced technological artifacts, designed to facilitate player engage-ment and investments of time and energy in what appears to go on in these worlds, are real too, since they clearly constitute an integral part of our everyday experi-ence of the larger cultural reality we live in and are part of? In what follows, we shall investigate to what extent it is possible to objectively qualify and quantify what we – for the time being – shall refer to here as the im-plicit reality of computer games and their fictional worlds. One way of approach-ing this issue is to seek to ascribe to computer games a hybrid ontological status as mediated cultural artifacts. This hybrid ontological character derives from the fact that computer games possess sets of characteristics that allow certain aspects of their reality to be categorized as tangible cultural artifacts and other aspects as in-tangible cultural artifacts.
|Data di pubblicazione:||2012|
|Titolo:||Are computer games real? Process, Interaction and meaning in past, present and future possible worlds.|
|Titolo del libro:||The Philosophy of Computer Games|
|Collana:||Philosophy of Engineering and Tachnology|
|Nome editore:||Springer Verlag|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||Capitolo/Saggio|
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