Cover

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Title Page, Copyright Page

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pp. i-iv

Contents

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pp. v-viii

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Introduction

Thomas P. Oates and Robert Alan Brookey

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pp. 1-20

Perhaps one of the most persistent legends of the early video game industry involves the installation of a prototype of the Pong game in a Sunnyvale, California, bar named Andy Capp’s in September 1972.1 Two weeks after the game was installed, Atari engineer Al Alcorn got a call from the bar manager, complaining that the game was broken and requesting that it be hauled off the premises. When...

PART 1. Gender Play

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1. The Name of the Game Is Jocktronics: Sport and Masculinity in Early Video Games

Michael Z. Newman

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pp. 23-44

Although it may never be settled which video game deserves to be called the first, it’s notable that two games based on racquet sports always come up in talk of the medium’s origins. Tennis for Two, a demonstration using an analog computer and an oscilloscope at Brookhaven National Laboratory (1958), and Pong, the first hit coin-operated ...

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2. Madden Men: Masculinity, Race, and the Marketing of a Video Game Franchise

Thomas P. Oates

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pp. 45-62

In August 2012, as the release of EA Sports’ Madden NFL 13 video game approached, a months-long marketing blitz peaked with a series of advertisements featuring actor Paul Rudd and Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis. In the campaign, the two are presented as close, lifelong friends, whose bond is cemented by periodic...

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3. Neoliberal Masculinity: The Government of Play and Masculinity in E-Sports

Gerald Voorhees

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pp. 63-91

While scholars have begun to investigate the professionalization of gaming, I take it on only to the extent that it is an exemplary site for thinking about the sportification of digital games, a broader sociocultural phenomenon that emerges at the juncture of neoliberal rationality and distinct – often competing – constructions of masculinity circulating...

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4. The Social and Gender in Fantasy Sports Leagues

Luke Howie and Perri Campbell

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pp. 92-111

Since the mid-1990s, fantasy sports participation has grown at a significant rate. According to the Fantasy Sports Trade Association, just under thirty-two million people over twelve years old play fantasy sports in North America (including Canada). In the United Kingdom, two million people participate in fantasy Premier League soccer...

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5. Domesticating Sports: The Wii, the Mii, and Nintendo’s Postfeminist Subject

Renee M. Powers and Robert Alan Brookey

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pp. 112-130

In 2005 Nintendo began releasing information about their next console, code-named “Revolution.” The reception from the video game press was rather mixed. Ryan Block, covering Nintendo’s introduction of the Revolution at the 2005 Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) for the tech blog...

PART 2. The Uses of Simulation

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6. Avastars: The Encoding of Fame within Sport Digital Games

Steven Conway

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pp. 133-151

Lionel Messi has developed well during his time as Surreal Madrid’s star striker. He has an overall rating of 98, with an attack and shot accuracy of 99, dribble accuracy and dribble speed of 98, and explosive power of 97. Allied to this are eleven special abilities, such as “incisive run,” “long-range drive,” and “roulette skills” (this refers not...

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7. Keeping It Real: Sports Video Game Advertising and the Fan-Consumer

Cory Hillman and Michael L. Butterworth

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pp. 152-171

In the United States, few, if any, cultural activities, products, or experiences are immune to the often unrestrained hands of commercialism, marketing, and advertising in the ambitious and overzealous pursuit of audiences and consumers. Sports are especially subject to these conditions, evidenced by the following examples: advertisers...

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8. Exploiting Nationalism and Banal Cosmopolitanism: EA’s FIFA World Cup 2010

Andrew Baerg

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pp. 172-190

Sport and its representation in media have long been a site for the communication and perpetuation of national identity. International mediated sporting events such as the Olympics and World Cup have tended to become sites allowing for the expression of myths about collective, national identities. As such, it might be expected that this...

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9. Ideology, It’s in the Game: Selective Simulation in EA Sports’ NCAA Football

Meredith M. Bagley and Ian Summers

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pp. 191-216

On July 9, 2013, the leading sports story in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, a college town obsessed with its university’s football team, was not predictions for a third straight national championship, not news of yet another five-star recruit, nor updates on injuries and summer training sessions. Instead, inch-high headlines announced...

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10. Yes Wii Can or Can Wii? Theorizing the Possibilities of Video Games as Health Disparity Intervention

David J. Leonard, Sarah Ullrich-French, and Thomas G. Power

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pp. 217-234

The debate about exergaming often appears in headlines such as “Can Wii Games Replace Regular Exercise?” and “Is the Wii Fit Better than Regular Exercise?”1 In this regard, virtual gaming has been reduced to a binary, a mathematical formula that treats participants as universal subjects and analyzes how well the games transport...

Contributors

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pp. 235-238

Index

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pp. 239-251