Gaming the-city: Telephone City and Social Spaces of Transformation
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Pervasive games blend real world interaction with imaginative play. They may or may not be tied to a specific location, but they invade the player’s life. They have the ability through two-way ...
Pervasive games blend real world interaction with imaginative play. They may or may not be tied to a specific location, but they invade the player’s life. They have the ability through two-way interaction to change the nature of the world around us. A pervasive game might send you emails or ask you to take a photograph of an object or person in your environment and upload it to the game’s site. A pervasive game might make you feel paranoid as you begin to fear you cannot distinguish between game events and ‘real’ life. The game is real, but exists in a different semiotic domain from everyday life (Montola 10). Having much in common with dreams, science fiction, and film noir (where the world is familiar but all of the rules have changed), pervasive gaming is an ideal tool for engaging with digital culture in a learning situation. Telephone City: A Mystery is a special summer course and alternate reality game that I am designing for Wilfrid Laurier University in Brantford. Brantford used to be the number three manufacturing city in Canada and is the place where Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone. Now ravaged by the tidal forces of globalization, Brantford is a city of obsolete technology, empty factories and haunted industrial sites.
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