|> News archive||> Neural Magazine||> Neural Station|
|> emusic||> new media art||> hacktivism|
edited by Noah Wardrip-Fruin, Pat Harrigan
First Person, New Media as Story, Performance, and Game
<book> The MIT Press
'First person' enjoyment binds traditional literature and the videogames where the player sees the world from a first person perspective. Anyway, there are fundamental differences between the two 'genres' if videogames, for their complexity and ability to deeply involve the player, are given the status of literature. Noah Wardrip-Fruin, co-author with Nick Montfort of the 'The New Media Reader' anthology, has collected here essays and opinions according to a networked logic. This text, in fact, alternates statements, replies and critiques and resembles a collaborative dialogue which, as in mailing lists, develops in an intriguing way. The themes are fascinating, with their many attempts at decoding complex structures (such as the interaction architectures of a game), and analyze the simulation as a potential tool of (social) exploration and the still manifest schizophrenia of robot agents. This kind of investigations are necessary to understand the social consequences of interaction in ways simple to assimilate, but very complex in the changes they generate. Some aspects succeed in breaking the fictitious stigma of 'entertainment product' which surrounds videogames. Some of those aspects are the repetitive nature typical of sequential literature, hindered by interactivity, which prevents any kind of flashback, and the loss of authorship in multiuser videogames, where an estimated ten percent of users builds almost all the valid stories, an aspect highlighted by Celia Pearce. The narrative experience of videogames is legitimated and remarkably enriched, and the authors pave the way for a basic theory which can be the foundation of an analysis yet to be done.