Define and explain the elements of a video game: Firewatch Assignments | Get Homework Help
General Rubric: The general rubric is here. Remember, as always, you are graded on how well you follow the instructions in the prompt.
Summary: Through the game Firewatch, define and explain the elements of a video game that the developers use to create meaning (that is, to get across ideas, values, critics, etc). Explain what the game means, i.e., its themes, its message, its central ideas.
Professors Note: I realize there are a lot of questions here. I don’t want you to feel compelled to answer them all. What you should take away from this is that your analysis should focus on the ludological elements of the game, how they shape characters, stories, and worlds, and ultimately how they contribute to creating the meaning—the themes, main ideas and messages—of these games.
Part 1. Play
Play Firewatch. If you have technical problems, contact me.
Part II: Write an analysis of the game, in the following structure:
Explain briefly what you think the game is about what the game means: explain what it intends to say (its central ideas or critical commentaries), through the experience it creates. This is your thesis
Explain briefly what elements of the game you will analyze and offer as evidence.
Analyze the game This can include narratological elements but should focus on ludological analysis.
In the first part, analyze the characters (who they are, what motivates them, their personalities, their thoughts/feelings and struggles).
What kinds of mechanics exist that influence the character?
What kind of choices exist for the player that shape the character? How do they do so?
What motivates them? Does the player choose their motives?
How do the player’s choices contribute to creating the character? Explain as part of your analysis what parts of the character you describe you also helped to create. What did you as the player do to help create the character?
How do the mechanics of the game help to create the character? Do the mechanical operations that the player is asked to perform tell us anything about the character?
IV: Plot Analysis. Perform an analysis of the plot of Firewatch.
Explain (briefly) what the plot of Firewatch is. This should be no more than 2-3 sentences. DO NOT SPEND TOO MUCH TIME SUMMARIZING THE PLOT.
What are the key moments in the plot that shape the overall meaning of the work? What are the moments when the central ideas become clear?
How do the user’s choices effect the plot? Does the central idea, or meaning, change based upon the user’s choices?
Does what the story is about change based on the user?
How, if at all, do the mechanics of the game contribute to creating the story? Do they contribute any kind of feeling to the player’s experience? Do they contribute any symbolic value?
Does the game exhibit ludo-narrative consonance or dissonance?
Part IV: The World of Firewatch
Finally, discuss the world of the game and how it contributes, if it does, to creating the meaning of the game. To do so, you should think about the following questions:
What are the rules of the game? How does the simulation respond to the player and how, if it all, does that contribute to creating the overall meaning of the game?
How do you win/complete the game? Can you win? Is that significant for creating the overall experience?
Part V. Conclusion
In this part, write your conclusions. Talk about what the game means: what is/are its central ideas, what message does it send, what is the emotional/conceptual/ideological content of the experience it tries to create? What do the players learn from it, or take away from it? This part should be at least 1 page long.
This analysis should be 5-6 pages long.
Include your name at the top of the first page.
12 pt font, default margins, Arial or Times New Roman Font.
Format should be .doc, .docx, or .pdf.
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