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Reading: Game Studies’ Material Turn


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Game Studies’ Material Turn


Thomas H Apperley ,

The University of Melbourne
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Darshana Jayemane

The University of Melbourne
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This article argues that among the burgeoning approaches to game studies there is a crucial re-imagining of digital games in their material contexts across different scales and registers: the machine, the body and the situations of play. This re-imagining can be seen in a number of approaches: platform and software studies, which examine the materiality of code and/or the technological infrastructure through which it is enacted; critical studies of digital labour; and detailed ethnographic studies that examine the cultures of online worlds and situate gaming in relation to everyday practices. The article traces these three strands, focusing on how they demonstrate a heightening of the stakes in game studies research by providing access to scale and connecting digital games research to wider interdisciplinary contexts.
How to Cite: Apperley, T.H. and Jayemane, D., 2012. Game Studies’ Material Turn. Westminster Papers in Communication and Culture, 9(1), pp.5–25. DOI:
Published on 01 Oct 2012.
Peer Reviewed


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