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How Pac-Man Eats


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How the tools and concepts for making games are connected to what games can and do mean; with examples ranging from Papers, Please to Dys4ia

About the Author

Noah Wardrip-Fruin is Professor of Computational Media at the University of California, Santa Cruz, where he codirects the Expressive Intelligent Studio. He is the author of Expressive Processing- Digital Fictions, Computer Games, and Software Studies (MIT Press).


This is the heart of this book - a new abstraction, a new tool for discussing something that we've always felt was there, but didn't have a good way to identify. This tool lets us broaden our conversations as we discuss game design: we can talk about mechanics and systems not just in terms of what they do, but also what they will mean to the player."
- Robert Zubek, author of Elements of Game Design, Gamasutra "Wardrip-Fruin's use of logics and models works impressively well at offering readings of what his chosen games are about in ways that a focus on story, mechanics, or rules alone cannot."
- Rainforest Scully-Blaker, Critical Studies in Media Communication "The creative form of the video game has entered a phase of development that is both fraught and promising, attracting notably intelligent designers and scholars. How Pac-Man Eats should figure prominently in the way these makers take on a catastrophic world."
- Stuart Moulthrop, Electronic Book Review

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