Real game worlds: The emotional reality of fictional worlds

Torill Mortensen

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


Th ere are two ways to understand play: one is to observe it, the other is to participate in it. Since 2001, game studies has promoted participation as one of the main requirements to understand play. Some play is so performative that while it can be observed, it also must be played. Game worlds, the worlds of online, multi-user games, are delicate constructs of make-believe and technology, which act as support and arenas for immersive, theatrical and/or competitive play. Th is is a discussion of how far virtual ethnography can take the researcher in understanding game worlds.
To explore this, this article will address play, game worlds and transmediality, as
well as discuss methods. I will look to Lisbeth Klastrup and Susana Tosca to discuss story worlds, as well as to discussions led by Celia Pearce, Tom Boellstorff and T.L. Taylor (among others) to discuss ethnography in games and virtual ethnographies.
Translated title of the contributionEkte spilverdener: Den emotionelle realismen i fiksjonsverdener
Original languageEnglish
Issue number64
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jun 2018

Cite this