Jank Accounts: We Should Study 'Broken' Games

Daniel Bennett, Elisa Mekler

Publikation: Konference artikel i Proceeding eller bog/rapport kapitelKonferencebidrag i proceedingsForskningpeer review


We argue that HCI games research can benefit by understanding experiences of "jank". Jank is a gaming vernacular term for game-elements that are somehow “off”: sloppy, glitchy, or clumsy. Examples include frustrating control schemes, primitive visuals, absurd physics errors, and NPCs with wooden, alienating behaviour. Importantly, ‘jank’ is no straightforward term of abuse: players use the term appreciatively, even with affection. Attention to the “paradox” of jank-appreciation can help us understand the limits of usability in understanding player experience. It can clarify conditions which foster reflection and appreciation of adversity, and shed light on games as aesthetic experiences.
TitelCHI PLAY Companion '23
StatusUdgivet - 2023


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