Battlefield 4, Empathy, and Drill

Kino Maravillas and Daniel Sperling examine Battlefield 4, a critically-acclaimed first person shooter game from Swedish developer DICE. Battlefield combines high quality graphics, directional audio, and realistic gameplay elements to deliver an immersive shooter experience. We used two chapters from Bogost’s book, “Empathy” and “Drill,” to describe how the game conveys these themes and thus supports Bogost’s assertions.

Exit Conference Sign Ups

Please sign up for a time to meet with me between now and when you leave for the summer. There are lots of times on that form on Mon 4/25, Tues 4/28, Mon 5/2, and Tues 5/3. If you’re still in town, there are also some slots on Wed 5/4 after our scheduled exam slot. If you really can’t make any of those times listed, please let me know and I’ll see what I can work out — I listed almost every possible time on the form, but I will do my best to accommodate specific requests as necessary.

Before you meet with me, have your site and reflection letter as complete as you can get them. And before you meet with me, please complete this self-assessment of your portfolio letter. Be honest as you critique your own site — it’s not for a grade or anything, but should be a useful starting point for our conversation about your portfolio.

A Blind Legend

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Check out A Blind Legend, the first mobile action adventure to replace image with sound. Transported to a chivalric realm inspired by the medieval age, the players must rely entirely on their sense of hearing to succeed in their quest. While guiding their hero by using their smart phone or tablet as a joystick, they move through a 3 dimensional audio universe, made possible by the integration of a binaural technology, which is still in the early stages of development within the video game industry. Designed by a team of sound and video game experts, A Blind Legend is an immersive gaming experience devised not only for the visually impaired and blind, but for anybody seeking an unprecedented sensory experience through a video game.

A Blind Legend is a chivalric adventure, set in a familiar world — inspired by King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table — with a touch of fantasy. The player takes the role of Edward Blake, the legendary blind knight. Guided by his daughter he must save his wife, Lady Caroline, who has been kidnapped by Thork, the mad king of High Castle. During his epic and perilous journey, he must find his way, navigate the traps and ambushes and confront the many enemies that make up Thork’s army.

Wolf in White Van Nuts and Bolts

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Due April 15

When you’ve finished your essay analyzing Wolf in White Van, publish it to your site as a page. Make sure if the page does not show up in your menu automatically that you add the page so that readers can get to it.

Then publish a short blog post that links to your essay and that includes the controlling idea for your essay.

Audience: You should assume an audience that has read Wolf in White Van and thought about it a little bit but who understands the novel not quite as well as you do.

Image: Make certain you have at least one image on your page. I would prefer that the image not be the cover of the novel but that instead you take a phrase or term that your essay addresses and search Flickr to find a CC-licensed image that you can use to illustrate your essay. Make certain you have a good image credit citation on your page.

Due April 17

Peer feedback: Each of you should read (at least) one of your peer’s Wolf essays. You must read the essay by the student you’re assigned to in the table below:

Then you will create a document in the Peer Feedback Docs folder on Google drive that I’ve shared with all of you. Title the document with the name of the student whose essay you are responding to and the title of that student’s essay (in other words, Mady will name her document Kino “[Kino’s Title Here]).

Here is a post with some specific questions for you to address in your feedback, but fundamentally you should approach this task as an opportunity to help this student make their essay better and, in the process to notice what they have done well or not that might help you to recognize strengths or flaws in your own essay when you turn to your own revisions.

Due April 19

Change the title of the draft you published on Friday to indicate that it is a draft essay.

By class on Tuesday, you should revise your own Wolf essay, taking into consideration the feedback you received from your peer and anything you observed in the process of providing feedback on your peer’s essay. Publish the revised essay as a new page and make the draft from Friday a subpage.

As you revise your essay, you should quote from one of your peer’s essays (probably that will be the essay you reviewed, but it does not have to be), which means revising your own argument in some way to include, respond to, resist, or build on something new that you saw in one of your peer’s essays that makes you think about your own argument a little bit differently. Include a link and a works cited entry for your peer’s draft essay.

Publish a reflective blog post that links to the final version of your essay.

Hallo 4 and Art

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In this episode, Brian Fan and Mike James explore the graphic design of Halo 4, a game revolving around an epic galactic conflict. To what extent does art function in a game that is primarily a first-person shooter? How do the designs for weaponry and starships evolve as the identity of the game solidifies? Most importantly, however, what role does art play in the creation of a community and culture for the game?

Week ahead: 15

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15 4/12 Kentucky Route Zero Act 2
4/14 Workshop day
4/15 Podcast Episode 9 due

Play Kentucky Route Zero over the weekend. I’ll get a reflective post assignment up — broadly speaking, I want you to think about how the magical realism of the story is meant to get you to think about/engage with the world around you. How does KYZ function as a game about place?

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