Author Topic: Middle Ages in Modern Games 2021  (Read 972 times)

Jubal

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Middle Ages in Modern Games 2021
« on: May 25, 2021, 12:44:07 PM »
This conference is just starting - all the papers are in twitter-thread form and publicly readable, and it'll be going until Friday. Do discuss it there or here!


You can follow along at:
https://twitter.com/MidAgesModGames
« Last Edit: May 25, 2021, 01:11:03 PM by Jubal »
The duke, the wanderer, the philosopher, the mariner, the warrior, the strategist, the storyteller, the wizard, the wayfarer...

dubsartur

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Re: Middle Ages in Modern Games 2021
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2021, 08:33:28 PM »
Twitter threads are just as bad a format for essays as Facebook posts.  Is this conference posted anywhere that each post is a single URL with cohesive paragraphs?  Then I might make time to have a look.

Jubal

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Re: Middle Ages in Modern Games 2021
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2021, 09:26:33 PM »
In fairness they're not meant to be essays - I think it's better to see these like a conference poster session, a small shop window of images and as little text as you can get away with to get across one or two core ideas about what you're doing. I do agree generally that Twitter is a weak academic argument format, but I have found MAMG quite a good part of it overall.

There will be a website where all the threads are compiled to some degree, I'll link that here when it appears - there are also thread readers available for cohesive-ising tweet thread.
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dubsartur

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Re: Middle Ages in Modern Games 2021
« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2021, 11:09:40 PM »
I've seen people who post one thread of 10 to 20 tweets per week.  To me, these are essays, but in twitter's awful censorable format.  The threads for this conference might be shorter.

Jubal

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Re: Middle Ages in Modern Games 2021
« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2021, 11:25:08 PM »
They're limited to 12 (which IMV is too short to classify as an essay: you can present an argument structure I guess but not really exemplify and bookend it in that sort of space).
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dubsartur

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Re: Middle Ages in Modern Games 2021
« Reply #5 on: May 26, 2021, 07:01:03 AM »
Humh, I guess 12 tweets is from 150 to 400 words.

I think the 'thread reader' apps show that people are trying to use twitter for things it is not designed for (ie. these long threads vs.one post with  'here is a link to my article / page').  And that academics on twitter are forgetting that the master's tools will never dismantle the master's house.

Jubal

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Re: Middle Ages in Modern Games 2021
« Reply #6 on: May 26, 2021, 09:45:42 PM »
I'm not so sure, in that I'm not sure your and my attitudes to what Twitter is ideally useful for are typical of academics - some people may actually like twitter threads and the capacity they give to split something up into very small idea-chunks. It's not my ideal way of doing things, but other people don't have my brain.

Anyway - I enjoyed today, mostly for the threaded discussions below some of the papers. Particular bits of interest for me:
  • The stand-out papers for me today were Priyanka Das who discussed the use of mandalas & mandanas as images in the game Raji, and Tess Watterson on the monstrosity of hags. Tess pointed at the emergence of the "witch" as a late medieval concept and the way femininity is portrayed as corrupted in hag imagery, with this being strongly linked to features associated with lack of fertility specifically: hags are bony, with sagging breasts, and so on. The idea of "monstrosity as failed fertility" was an interesting perspective on some of these monsters, as I'd previously tended to associate those features of the hag simply with the idea of hags as aged.
  • Priyanka Das' paper was on Raji, which I really should get and play (it's an action-RPG set in Indian subcontinent mythos) and discussing the importance of this imagery in representing character strength in the game. I've still not got all my thoughts in a row on this one, and many of them amount to "I don't know enough here", but it's really interesting to see different philosophical concepts used in representing a character and their status.
  • I had a good little discussion about the lack of non-winged dragons in games. More of these would be good I think! Indeed I'd like to see games that actually avoided hard category lines as much as most RPGs do with their species-level notes: dragons at least are rare enough in most games that one could just give them individual names, even if one doesn't have wings, one does, and one is more like a wyvern.
  • The folks from the city-builder game Foundation did an interesting little piece discussing their approach. I like the way it sounds like the player only gets to half plan the city with AI villagers adding the housing and streets, filled out around topography to create a more medieval-feeling street plan than a human might naturally create in a top down view.
  • Lena van Beek had a really interesting theory about unicorn imagery in the Witcher being representative of Ciri (and what this means for e.g. certain scenes involving religious or sexual interactions and unicorns). I don't know the books or remaining games well enough to comment - again, should be on the list.
  • Some discussion on cities in RPGs with Rob Houghton, which are ongoing so I'll try and write more on that up sometime.
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Jubal

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Re: Middle Ages in Modern Games 2021
« Reply #7 on: September 28, 2021, 02:25:12 PM »
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Tusky

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Re: Middle Ages in Modern Games 2021
« Reply #8 on: September 28, 2021, 02:35:57 PM »
Very nice. I love the reader!

That's some good new reading material for my week off!  :D
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Pentagathus

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Re: Middle Ages in Modern Games 2021
« Reply #9 on: September 29, 2021, 03:10:45 PM »
Hey! Henry's come to see us! :)

Jubal

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Re: Middle Ages in Modern Games 2021
« Reply #10 on: October 05, 2021, 12:59:07 AM »
Henry?
The duke, the wanderer, the philosopher, the mariner, the warrior, the strategist, the storyteller, the wizard, the wayfarer...