Mario Donick

Dr. Mario Donick has studied German language & literature and history at the University of Rostock. He has a PhD in Communication Studies. He works as independent author and researcher. Books and articles on human computer interaction & society, as well as computer games.

Playing differently. How to escape the limitations of Designed Games

FROG 2022 – Talk

Many commercial games allow for just one or just a few possible ways of playing. They present problems to solve, and the methods for solving these problems are constricted by the affordances of game design (which in itself has to adhere to other contraints, such as economic ones). Gaming media reinforce the intended ways of playing (by presenting ways to “beat” a game or by teaching how to play in the most efficient way).

This talk invites to reject this traditional way of playing. The talk will follow 3 main differences:

1) the player as subject (in contrast to seeing the player as system in a socio-technical relation to the game environment) (This difference arises from my own PhD thesis (2016) which had partly the perspective of social systems theory on human computer interaction)

2) being creative (instead of being just “busy”). (This difference goes back to Erich Fromm’s thoughts about “Geschäftigkeit” vs. “Tätig-sein”)

3) experiencing a full gaming “situation” (instead of just a “constellation” of parts) (This difference is influenced by neo-phenomenological concepts / Hermann Schmitz)


Leave a Reply