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Beyond fun in games : the serious leisure of the power gamer

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Beyond fun in games : the serious leisure of the power gamer

Silverman, Mark (2006) Beyond fun in games : the serious leisure of the power gamer. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

Over recent years, considerable scholarly attention has aimed at exploring the forms of played sociality emerging out of the digital spaces of Massive Multiplayer Online Games. Yet, a central limitation of the research thus far is the tendency to generalize to the experience of a 'casual gamer', while the radically different experience of the more extreme player type known as the 'power gamer' has gone virtually undocumented. Blurring the line between work and leisure, power gamers take their play very seriously. They demonstrate such intense levels of commitment and perseverance, that they are often cast as deviants, seen as all too willing to compromise every basic valued moral and personal principle, along with several bodily necessities such as sleeping, eating and exercise, all in exchange for success and personal gain in a video game. Yet, how can we explain their intense level of perseverance? What are their motivations? How can we explain the development of such intense commitment to a social world where participants almost never meet face to face? By using concepts from sociology, social psychology, and leisure studies, my project aims at understanding some of the processes at work which may help to provide some answers to these questions. Through my ethnography of Everquest , using both participant observation and interviews, I explore the intense culture of commitment of the power gamer as it is shaped through a digitally mediated serious leisure pursuit

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Sociology and Anthropology
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Silverman, Mark
Pagination:v, 113, [8] leaves ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Sociology and Anthropology
Date:2006
Thesis Supervisor(s):Simon, Bart
ID Code:8993
Deposited By:Concordia University Libraries
Deposited On:18 Aug 2011 14:41
Last Modified:18 Aug 2011 14:41
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