Technoculture, Art and Games (TAG) is an interdisciplinary centre for research/ creation in game studies and design, digital culture and interactive art


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CGSA 2019 Review

Posted by mi

the logo for the canadian game studies association

This past June, a flock of researchers from the Technoculture, Art and Games Lab flew across the country to participate in the Canadian Games Studies Association’s (CGSA) annual conference in Vancouver. Part of the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, CGSA is an annual event in which game studies scholars from across the world gather to present their work, discuss research trends, and network with other academics. This year’s conference was hosted on the stunningly gorgeous grounds of the University of British Columbia, providing a picturesque backdrop for the event. Amongst the greenery and mountains of Vancouver, TAG members put forth an impressive range of conference presentations, ranging from pre-constructed panels to round-tables and workshops. 

It would be impossible to fully summarize each TAG presentation in a single blog post, so instead enjoy this series of short summaries and tweets from the event. If you’re curious about any presentation in particular, click on an individual tweet to learn more about the scholar, or simply visit TAG’s research and member pages.

GAMERella, Community Outreach and Inclusive Design

Gina Haraszti

Presenting on the panel Teaching Games & Teaching With Games alongside Nolan Bazinet and Emma Vossen, Gina reflected on six years of running GAMERella – a game jam targeting women as well as first-time game jammers – and the creation of an inclusive game jam guide with Desirée de Jesus.

Sharing Games: Proliferation, Posterity, Practice

Michael Iantorno, Enric Llagostera, Jess Marcotte

Three TAGsters joined forces to form this pre-constructed panel, which focused on the challenges in sharing, archiving, and creating games. Videogame hacks, game engines, and digital-hybrid games took center stage in this diverse array of presentations.

I WILL MAKE YOU A BETTER PERSON: A Research-Creation Experiment in Collaboration

Rebecca Goodine, Dietrich Squinkifer and Kalervo A. Sinervo

Another TAG triple-threat, this round-table/performance began with an in-depth discussion about academic burnout – featuring scholars at various points in their academic careers – and ended with a the premiere of Polish, a nail polish simulator developed through collaborative research-creation.

The Horror of the Other: Indigenous Monstrosity in Until Dawn

Rebecca Waldie

As part of the panel Ludic Monstrosity: The Marginalized ‘Other’ in Games with Sarah Stang and Amanda Cullen, Rebecca provided a deep analysis of the appropriation of Indigenous culture in the 2015 interactive drama adventure game Until Dawn.

Data-Manipulating Play: How Player Social and Play Data can be used to Alter Player Patterns

Scott DeJong

Constituting half of the Platforms and Infrastructures panel with Sean Willett, Scott’s presentation took a look at the complex sets of relationships between players, analytics, and platforms in relation to the uber-popular (and notoriously toxic) MOBA League of Legends.

All-in-all, the event turned out to be a great success for TAG’s scholars. We’re already looking forward to next year’s CGSA – which will be hosted by Western University in London (Ontario) – but many of our members will first be renewing their passports to participate in DiGRA, taking place in Kyoto from August 6-10. If you can’t make the trip out to Japan to watch the presentations, keep an eye on the TAG blog for updates in late August (once we get over our collective jet lag).