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Introduction to Expanding Universes. Exploring Games and Transmedial Ways of World-building

Raine Koskimaa, Krzysztof Maj, Ksenia Olkusz

Abstract


Transmedia is a wide concept, as by definition, it is a network of various media forms. It includes also games, both digital and more traditional forms of games. Transmedia productions are often built around a certain television series, but in some cases a digital game has been the core production as well. Games, however, have not been looked at in detail in their role as a part of a transmedia whole. It is important to pay attention to the specificity of games as a media form, to their product-audience relation, and to the way how they incorporate playfulness into that relation. Even in cases where games are just a minor part of the production, the playfulness involved in transmedia user practices makes games well worth closer scrutiny.

The selection of articles in this issue of IJTL provide multifaceted and complimentary approaches to the topic of games and transmedia. They discuss both the ways how games in themselves may be transmedial, but also how games may be incorporated as elements in larger transmedia universes. Furthermore, the articles also present ways how playful engagement with media is, or could be, part of transmedia user experience. The articles deal with the World of Warcraft and Metal Gear Solid franchises, live-action role-play, the walking simulator game Dear Esther, as well as time-loop structure in film and games.


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7358/ijtl-2018-000-intr


International Journal of Transmedia Literacy (IJTL)
Registered by Tribunale di Milano (22/10/2014 n. 328)
Online ISSN 2465-2261 - Print ISSN 2465-227X


Editor in Chief: Matteo Ciastellardi
Managing Editor: Giovanna Di Rosario
Managing Committee: Matteo Andreozzi, Stefano Calzati, Ugo Eccli, Cristina Miranda de Almeida.
Board Committee: Alan Albarran (University of North Texas, United States), Rogério Barbosa Da Silva (Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Brazil), Giovanni Baule (Politecnico di Milano, Italy), Laura Borràs Castanyer (Universitat de Barcelona, Spain), Derrick de Kerckhove (Politecnico di Milano, Italy), Henry Jenkins (University of Southern California, United States), Marsha Kinder (University of Southern California, United States), Raine Koskimaa (University of Jyväskylä, Finland), George Landow (Brown University, United States), Paul Levinson (Fordham University, United States), Asún López-Varela (Universidad Complutense, Spain), Lev Manovich (City University of New York, United States), Nick Montfort (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, United States), Marcos Novak (UCLA - University of California, Los Angeles, United States), Massimo Parodi (Università degli Studi di Milano, Italy), Bruce W. Powe (York University, Canada), Kate Pullinger (Bath Spa University, United Kingdom), Marie-Laure Ryan (Indipendent Scholar), Alexandra Saemmer (Université Paris 8, France), Carlos Scolari (Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain), Susana Tosca (IT University of Copenhagen, Denmark), Alessandro Zinna (Université Toulouse II, France)