Oh no I'm toast! : mastering videogame secrets in theory and practice
Author(s)Drzaic, Kristina Lynn
Mastering videogame secrets in theory and practice
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Comparative Media Studies.
Henry Jenkins, III.
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Secrets are a ubiquitous part of contemporary videogame design, yet are largely unexplored within academic discourse and often dismissed as extras. I contend that secrets play a fundamental and influential role within a given gamespace in terms of the way they affect a videogame design and player experience. As such this paper will investigate the nature of secrets in videogames. I shall find where secrets exist in a game and how they function as moments of gameplay. Then I will explore secrets historically and look at how the meaning of secrets have changed and evolved over time. It will be shown that secrets create a window to an underlying structure of gameplay, a meta-level that subverts the regular play of a videogame. Further, I will argue that secrets are a space where players engage in unstructured play, free from the constraints of a game design. Finally I will demonstrate how secrets can be used to personalize or redesign the experience of a videogame and/or remake the game design itself. In order to make this argument I will break down what secrets can mean specifically to players through two very differently structured games: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and Animal Crossing. Knowing why secrets matter in a gamespace will reveal a reason for why videogames are compelling as a brave new form of media.
Thesis (S.M.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Comparative Media Studies, 2007.Includes bibliographical references (p. 86-89).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Comparative Media Studies.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Comparative Media Studies.