Quickly emerging from the fast-paced growth of mobile communications and wireless technologies, pervasive games provide a worldwide network of potential play spaces. Now games can be designed to be played in public spaces like streets, conferences, museums and other non-traditional game venues, and game designers need to understand the world as a medium - both its challenges and its advantages.
This book shows how to change the face of playwho plays, when and where they play and what that play means to all involved. The authors explore aspects of pervasive games that concern game designers: what makes these games compelling, what makes them possible today, how they are made and by whom. For theorists, it provides a solid theoretical, philosophical and aesthetic grounding of their designs.
Pervasive Games covers everything from theory and design to history and marketing. Designers will find 13 detailed game descriptions, a wealth of design theory, examples from dozens of games and a thorough discussion of past inspirationsdirectly from the game designers themselves.
“This book is the definitive guide to the past, present, and future of stories and games that jump out of their cages and into your real life. Whether its characters that call you on the phone or game play that happens on the bus on your way to work, this kind of immersive entertainment will define the culture of the next century as surely as the movies dominated the last one.”
— Sean Stewart.
“Standing at the intersection of games, design and theory, the authors of Pervasive Games: Theory and Design, bring fresh air into game studies with this look at the field of ubiquitous play. Deeply connected to critical game studies, and filled with design case studies, this book is an excellent source for those involved in the design, study or play of pervasive games.”
— Tracy Fullerton.
Montola, Markus, Stenros, Jaakko & Waern, Annika (2009): Pervasive Games: Theory and Design. Morgan Kaufmann. [blog]
In the Nordic countries, live-action role-playing has developed into a unique and powerful form of expression. Nordic larps range from entertaining flights of fancy to the exploration of the intimate, the collective and the political. This incredible tradition combines influences from theatre and performance art with gamer cultures, in order to push the boundaries of role-playing.
Nordic Larp presents a critical cross section of this vibrant culture through 30 outstanding larps, combining stories told by designers, players and researchers with over 250 photographs of play and preparations. In addition the book contains two essays that explain the history and rhetorics of Nordic larp, and contextualizes it in relation to theatre, art and games.
Nordic Larp is a rare and vivid glimpse into a fascinating gaming tradition. If anyone knows how to imagine better worlds and build a more engaging reality, its larpers.
- Jane McGonigal, author of Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World
The rise of the ars ludorum is not confined to the bombastic power fantasies of the videogame but is manifest all over the globe in diverse ways, from the doujin games of Japan to the passionate intensity of the indie games movement to the rise of the Euro-style board game. Not least among these movements is larp, brought to its apotheosis in the Nordic countries, where vast, imaginative works of enormous artistic ambition receive attention not only from game geeks but from their national cultures as well. This vital phenomenon is now accessible to English speakers through this landmark work, an anthology of articles describing some of the most impressive and compelling works of the form. Anyone seriously interested in role-play, interactive narrative, and the collision between games and theater will find it of enormous interest.
- Greg Costikyan, Game Designer
Now evolved far from its roots in genre consumption and modification, the progressive Nordic live roleplaying scene is building the tools for participatory performance that artists internationally will be using for generations to come. Nordic Larp is the first book to put the communitys key pieces in one easily digestible and visually seductive format.
- Brody Condon, Artist