Game Studies, Entertainment & Cityscape

Subject 107-258 (2008)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2008.Search for this in the current handbookSearch for this in the current handbook

Credit Points: 12.500
Level: Undergraduate
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2008:

Semester 2, - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: A 1.5-hour lecture, a 1.5-hour tutorial per week and no more than five 2-hour lab sessions over the semester
Total Time Commitment: Not available
Prerequisites: Usually 12.5 points of first-year cinema studies.
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support:


Assoc Prof Angela Ndalianis
Subject Overview:

This subject will analyse the dramatic impact that computer games have had in transforming contemporary entertainment media and the urban environment in general. The subject will deal with the historical development of computer gaming from the earlier two-dimensional experiences offered by the era of Pong to the current 3D and online environments of the Final Fantasy games and Everquest series. Focus will be on the new visual and narrative formations that are offered by a variety of formats, including computer, Playstation 2, and X-Box. Industry and aesthetic connections with the cinema will be explored, as will the game genres' transformation of cinematic and other entertainment genres. The increased reliance on artificial intelligence engines will be considered, as will the artificial beings, avatars and virtual creatures that populate game environments like Black and White, the Sims and the Quake series. The subject will examine the emergence of such beings in light of their history and their fictional depiction in science fiction cinema. In addition the subject will look more broadly at the way culture reflects our society's fascination with embracing more experimental, interactive and invasive screen experiences on a wider social level - both in the public and private spheres. Students should complete the subject with an understanding of the historical development of computer game forms, genres and technological and material histories, and be able to critically evaluate the applicability of various theoretical models, such as theories of spectatorship, myth, hypertext/media, ludology to computer game technology and related screen media. They will also be able to account for the complex conglomerate overlaps and marketing principles that drive entertainment institutions - the game industry being one of the most lucrative.

Assessment: A 1500 word tutorial paper 40% (due during the semester), and a 2500 word essay or website 60% (due during examination period).Assessment submitted late without an approved formal extension will be penalised at 2% per day. Students who fail to submit up to 2-weeks after the final due date without a formal extension and/or special consideration will receive a fail grade for the piece of assessment.
Prescribed Texts: Prescribed Texts:A subject reader will be available from the Bookroom at the beginning of semester
Breadth Options: This subject is a level 2 or level 3 subject and is not available to new generation degree students as a breadth option in 2008.
This subject or an equivalent will be available as breadth in the future.
Breadth subjects are currently being developed and these existing subject details can be used as guide to the type of options that might be available.
2009 subjects to be offered as breadth will be finalised before re-enrolment for 2009 starts in early October.
Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:
  • be skilled in critical thinking and analysis;

  • possess effective written communication skills;

  • have an understanding of social, ethical and cultural context.

Related Course(s): Bachelor of Arts
Bachelor of Arts(Media and Communication) & Bachelor of Commerce
Bachelor of Arts(Media and Communications)
Diploma in Arts (Cinema Studies)
Diploma in Arts (Cultural Studies)
Graduate Certificate in Arts (Cinema Studies)
Graduate Diploma in Arts (Cinema Studies)

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