Current Projects

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DIGITAL PALADINS

by Pat Davet

“Thanks to virtual worlds, many religious practitioners now reimagine their traditions and creatively work to restore them to “authentic” sanctity or replace religious institutions with virtual world communities that provide meaning and purpose to human life.” – Robert M. Geraci, Virtually Sacred

In the 21st century, religion and technology have become inseparable entities. Both the Dalai Lama and the Pope have Twitter accounts. Scientology earns millions of dollars from “tech-based examinations of conscience.” Every major religion has offered statements examining the digital worlds that video games offer. What do games have to say back? Video games have been critically examining religion since the early 1980s. Today, mega-hits like Dragon Age and Assassin’s Creed offer criticism and praise for religious institutions both real-world and fictional. Other games like The Binding of Isaac and Journey examine faith through gameplay. Through this SimLab project, I will investigate the form and function of religion in video games.

 

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THE BLUE MEEPLE

by Rebecca Strang

We start playing games as children and continue to play them as adults. Communities form around games: within the game, on internet forums and social media, and in coffee houses and libraries. The Blue Meeple is about examining gaming and society:

  • Gaming culture, gender studies, and gaming communities
  • Exploring analog and digital gaming: board games, miniature war games, and video games
  • Observing how people learn and interact via games
  • Discussing how games affect society and how society affects games