Event Title

Creating A More Inclusive Gaming Community

Session Title

Inclusion and Community

Faculty Mentor

Ginger Williams, Ph.D.

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Department

Department of Interdisciplinary Studies

Location

WEST 217

Start Date

12-4-2019 2:00 PM

Description

Digital gaming is a massive part of popular culture. Videogame characters like the Master Chief and Mario are as well-known as characters like Darth Vader. You can find games on almost anything these days, from calculators to high-end desktop computers. People who enjoy puzzles could load up something like Monument Valley on their phones. People who like board games could toss virtual dice in a digital game of Monopoly. There are even games that allow players to build the cities of their dreams, managing transportation and sewer systems in an exercise of efficiency and creative solutions. The sheer variety of games and ways to play makes gaming an extraordinarily accessible hobby. The gaming audience is a massive collection of people with extremely varied interests, representing different age groups from all over the world. Yet, the popular culture image of the gamer has not evolved too far beyond a stereotype of the straight, white, male nerd. This research is concerned with working to change that perception. It is about expanding the definition of who a gamer is. That means looking at how the community formed, who gets to be included in the gaming community, who is excluded, and the ways to change that for the better. Gaming is not enjoyed solely by one demographic group, and it should not be portrayed that way. Changing the perception of who plays games and creating a more inclusive gaming culture should be an industry goal.

Course Assignment

IDVS 490 – Williams

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Apr 12th, 2:00 PM

Creating A More Inclusive Gaming Community

WEST 217

Digital gaming is a massive part of popular culture. Videogame characters like the Master Chief and Mario are as well-known as characters like Darth Vader. You can find games on almost anything these days, from calculators to high-end desktop computers. People who enjoy puzzles could load up something like Monument Valley on their phones. People who like board games could toss virtual dice in a digital game of Monopoly. There are even games that allow players to build the cities of their dreams, managing transportation and sewer systems in an exercise of efficiency and creative solutions. The sheer variety of games and ways to play makes gaming an extraordinarily accessible hobby. The gaming audience is a massive collection of people with extremely varied interests, representing different age groups from all over the world. Yet, the popular culture image of the gamer has not evolved too far beyond a stereotype of the straight, white, male nerd. This research is concerned with working to change that perception. It is about expanding the definition of who a gamer is. That means looking at how the community formed, who gets to be included in the gaming community, who is excluded, and the ways to change that for the better. Gaming is not enjoyed solely by one demographic group, and it should not be portrayed that way. Changing the perception of who plays games and creating a more inclusive gaming culture should be an industry goal.