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The games people play : A political economic analysis of video games and their production

Click to access the dissertation via PQDT
Author Nichols, Randall James
ISBN/ISSN 9780542494796
Broad Subject Economics & finance
Politics & Public administration
Sociology
Summary In recent years, video games have become increasingly significant, but little attention has been given to the nature of their production. This study examines the video game industry and the relationship between labor and production in order to better understand the forces,or logics of production, which drive the creation of the video game commodity. It uses the framework of critical political economy in order to better understand the commodity nature of video games to better explain the benefits and the drawbacks of the rapid adoption of video games in society. In keeping with this, it situates video games as a form of communication, capable of conveying meaning and ideology.At the same time, it uses the video game industry as a gauge for understanding the development of information industries in order to determine whether the rhetoric surrounding these industries holds true in practice.

Particular focus has been given to the historical forces which formed the industry, shaping it into something more than just a high-tech segment of the toy industry. Rather, this study shows that video games have long been seen as devices for communication and are currently one of the most dynamic forms of technology usable for communication. In addition, it examines current ties and new developments between the video game industry and other media industries in order to better demonstrate just how significant the reach of the video game commodity has become. Finally, attention is given to the industry's attempts to court a larger audience for its products. Through the combination of its growing audience base and its willingness to experiment with media convergence, the industry has earned legitimacy in a relatively short time.

Language English
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