Two links worth checking out:
MTV has a series of posts based on interviews with blacks in the videogame industry.
A grad student has created a blog about his dissertation, entitled “Becoming War.” The link between this and the MTV stuff can be found in Chapter three. Did you know that the United States Armed Forces not only has a first person shooter available for free, but that they track your results for recruiting purposes?
I’ve been interested in writing on race, politics, and the videogame industry, for a few reasons. I’ve been playing since the Atari 2600 days (still have mine at the crib) and have witnessed the shift in immersive technology and game types. Accompanying the increased immersion is increased affect, and we don’t quite know where this is going or what it means. And while the appearance and play of these games has increased tremendously they are still fairly stuck in the seventies and eighties. Every now and then we get a tetris, or a Katmari Damacy, but something like Doom that knocked me for a loop when I first saw it is nothing more than Contra from a different perspective. And Contra itself is nothing more than Wizard of Wor or Bezerk.
What does this mean for politics and for race? With the increased immersion we increase the reproductive ability of games. Games become the equivalent of leeches, or duppies, controlling not only how we interact within games, but how we move in the world. The USAF use games to reproduce warriors, to get their players to literally “become” war.