the international journal of computer game research
volume 1, issue 1
July 2001
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Game Studies is a crossdisciplinary journal dedicated to games research, web-published several times a year at Our primary focus is aesthetic, cultural and communicative aspects of computer games.
Our mission - To explore the rich cultural genre of games; to give scholars a peer-reviewed forum for their ideas and theories; to provide an academic channel for the ongoing discussions on games and gaming.

Computer Game Studies, Year One

by Espen Aarseth

Welcome to the first issue of the first academic, peer-reviewed journal dedicated to computer game studies. This is a noteworthy occasion, and perhaps the most remarkable aspect is that such a journal has not been started before. As we know, there have been computer games for almost as long as there have been computers: SpaceWar, arguably the first modern game, turns forty this year, and commercially the genre has existed for three decades. So why not something like this before?
Beyond Myth and Metaphor: The Case of Narrative in Digital Media
Games telling stories?
by Marie-Laure Ryan
If we compare the field of digital textuality to other areas of study in the humanities, its most striking feature is the precedence of theory over the object of study. Most of us read novels and see movies before we consult literary criticism and cinema studies ...
by Jesper Juul
As questions go, this is not a bad one: Do games tell stories? Answering this should tell us both how to study games and who should study them. The affirmative answer suggests that games are easily studied from within existing paradigms. The negative implies that we must start afresh...
Is It Possible to Build Dramatically Compelling Interactive Digital Entertainment
The Gaming Situation
by Selmer Bringsjord
Lots of computer games are compelling. E.g., I find even current computerized poker games quite compelling, and I find The Sims downright fascinating; doubtless you have your own favorites. But our planet isn't graced by even one dramatically compelling computer game ...
by Markku Eskelinen
The first point of departure for this article is a kind of paradox or contradiction. Outside academic theory people are usually excellent at making distinctions between narrative, drama and games. If I throw a ball at you I don't expect you to drop it and wait until it starts telling stories ...
The repeatedly lost art of studying games
Grandmothers are cooler than trolls
Jesper Juul reviews The Study of Games
This is one of the rare theoretical books with "games" in the title. Its uniqueness is further enhanced by the fact that games is used, not just as a vague metaphor for idle speculation, but in a literal sense ...
Gonzalo Frasca reviews The Sims
I must confess something that may end my career as a videogame reviewer for good. I cannot stand Tolkien. While I never read any of his books, I hated him as soon as I installed The Hobbit ...