"It's A-Me/Mario!": Playing as a Ludic Character

Daniel Vella

Research output: Journal Article or Conference Article in JournalConference articleResearchpeer-review


Discussions surrounding the avatar-figure have tended to focus on
its status as a manifestation or embodiment of the player. This
paper complicates this understanding by arguing that the avatar is
also an embodiment as a distinct character. Philosophical models
of embodied phenomenology and narratological theories of
character are drawn upon in order to propose an understanding of
the avatar as a ‘frame’ that structures the player’s relation to the
gameworld in such a way that playing becomes not only playing
as oneself, but also playing as a character.
Original languageEnglish
JournalFoundations of Digital Games Conference Proceedings
Pages (from-to)31-38
Publication statusPublished - May 2013


  • avatar
  • player-character
  • possible worlds
  • narratology
  • game ontology
  • phenomenology
  • game studies


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