I am hopelessly inept at video games. I did not play any while growing up, and my futile attempts in high school and Dr. Lerner’s Intro to Film and Media Studies ended in a lot of frustration and help to complete my assignments (I’m hoping the game for this class won’t be as frustrating). For me, this whole world and vocabulary goes way over my head. I do find the sexism of the technological world astonishing though; the anonymity of the internet and the avatar has given people the freedom to express their most malicious thoughts.
From what I have seen of the video game community, it is currently very focused on violent simulation games. Many of these games assume male participation and cast women only as passive or deviant subjects. Just like film, as video games have developed narratively the pressure to better represent a wide audience has grown. But the lack of legitimacy for video games studies as a serious endeavor and academic field, which I know Davidson professors have previously experienced, keeps academics and agents of change sidelined in their attempts to bring visibility to the problematic behavior.
Gone Home did not raise my confidence in my ability to play video games. You wouldn’t think just walking around and picking things up would be so hard, but I struggled all the way through. Discussing the video game in class felt like our discussion of Patchwork Girl; I missed so many crucial steps to figuring out what happened. It’s frustrating to feel like you can’t complete an assignment or are missing such large chunks of a narrative, even when you try to find it all.
Overall, I’m glad to be moving on from video games. They are a fascinating academic field, but my personal frustration with them doesn’t give much incentive for further study for me.
Source: Entering the world of gaming