Overtime as my research develops, a framework that comes to mind each time I revisit different games to help my DA form or to help me expand my knowledge in games media is Nostalgia. Nostalgia is what helps me identify my experience in the games media community and help me understand the structures of the games I use to play in my childhood. It also sculpts user’s thoughts towards a particular game and creates an opinion of experience for other curious people to jump on board and play the game.
What is Nostalgia?
Nostalgia helps create opinions around specific games and is apart of creating a textual analysis of any game played. This framework is one of the most important due to one’s memory of the game which therefore forms an opinion and pretty much sets in stone their thoughts about their experience of the game. For an example what I was talking about in week 2’s blog post when it comes to childhood memories, having positive nostalgia around Club Penguin helped me form my opinion so I could share to others who have similar experience of the game. With the increasing re-use of media turning nostalgia into a selling pointor commodity (Menke, 2017) The idea of nostalgia has been implied throughout the media as opportunities for gaming companies to reboot childhood games such as Club Penguin Rewritten. “The reaction, they explain to me, is one of heavy-duty nostalgia.” (Manavis 2020). Club Penguin Rebooted gave the game designers the opportunity to create a mature version of the 2000’s game for millennials that have now turned adults who use to enjoy the game in their younger years. Therefore, nostalgia is an important aspect to understand due to how much it impacts a game’s review and how much the media utilises nostalgia for centuries, even emulating things people may never have actually experienced (Niemeyer 2014).
“The purpose of our server is to create a safe but enjoyable experience for those that wish to experience nostalgia or to hang out and meet new friends across the globe.” (Creators of CP written)
What is Structuralism?
Structuralism within a game is crucial that users are going through the same process and taking the same meaning when playing a specific game. With Club Penguin, a structural consciousness is applied when describing the game and getting opinions from other users and if they have the same experience as myself of playing Club Penguin which also links in with nostalgia and how an opinion is formed. Many structuralist believe that through language and text, people construct themselves and the world they live in. (Games as Texts: A Practical Application of Textual Analysis to Games) So it is important in games to make sure the meaning from one text can also relate to another text meaning within the game design. Structuralism can also be illustrated through playing the game that creates meaning which is an important analytic technique for any game.
Why is the audience important?
Games attract a certain audience that like a specific genre, easy to understand the game and can connect with each-other within their social groups. The audience is an important framework as it utilises users playing the game who understand the text of the game. Fans also take steps further by expressing their experiences on subreddit comments or any other social media platforms creates an audience for the gaming industry. Fan culture through participation on blogs and gamers can be used to understand different types of gaming communities. (Jenkins 2006) Especially in Club Penguin Rewritten‘s case, an audience based on millennials caused by nostalgia have had their fanbase since early 2000’s and continued to be played and talked about since the shut down of the original Club Penguin in 2017.
Manvis, Sarah, 2018, A rebooted Club Penguin is giving millennials their first dose of digital nostalgia, webblog post, United Kingdom, updated 26th July 2021
Menke, M 2017, ‘Seeking Comfort in Past Media: Modelling Media Nostalgia as a Way of Coping With Media Change’, International Journal of Communication, vol. 11, pp. 626-646
Jenkins, H 2006, Fans, Bloggers, and Gamers: Exploring Participatory Culture, NYU Press, New York, USA.
Cole A, Dakoda B, 2021, “Games as Texts: A Practical Application of Textual Analysis to Games” Chapter 2 Games and Structure book,