A Man chooses, a slave obeys

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15 Citations (Scopus)


This article explores the concept of interactivity through a close reading of the 2007 video game Bioshock (2K Boston & 2K Australia 2007). By analyzing the interconnections between the game's storyline and ludic mechanisms I argue that Bioshock's narrative twist can be read as a powerful deconstruction of the notion of player agency (cf. Ruch, this issue). I therefore offer an analysis of this game as a problematization of traditional understandings of choice. By highlighting the role of pedagogy in Bioshock I reveal the importance of processes of training in the medium of video gaming. I conclude by drawing upon a post-structuralist framework to suggest that the subjectivity of the video game player is constructed through the play experience.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)27-38
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Gaming and Virtual Worlds
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes

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