Faculty of Arts


Video Games: Theory and Culture


This course considers the distinct nature of video games as a form of media, experience and interaction, as sites of aesthetic innovation and as tools for persuasion and resistance. Games produce social, cultural, political, commercial and individual experiences that are in many ways unique. Their players, and the communities they form, are again distinct in many ways from the audiences of other media. Why is this, and what processes are involved in setting video games apart?

The course also considers the multiple changing positions of video games in contemporary society and wider discourse. Simultaneously, video games are: demonised as wastes of time which corrode the minds of the young; the focus of industries which surpass the GDPs of nations; and seen as potentially developing valuable skills in those who engage with them. Video games are far from being a neutral form of media, and discourse surrounding them is heavily politicised.

In this course, you will be encouraged to link your own experiences with video games to both academic and popular debates, and situate video games in critical and theoretical context. The course is designed not only for those experienced with video games, but also for those who wish to explore this growing field of new media studies.

By the end of the course, you should have a deeper understanding of the theoretical models which consider video games as texts, tools and experiences, have developed a critical understanding of the distinctive features of the medium, the nature of its audience and communities and some key debates surrounding the operation of video games as media.

Availability 2020

Semester 2


Coordinator(s) Dr Allan Cameron


MEDIA 328: 15.0 points


30 points at Stage II in Media, Film and Television


FTVMS 212, FTVMS 328, MEDIA 212

Contact details | Search | Accessibility | Copyright | Privacy | Disclaimer | 1