We cannot think of modern society without also thinking of video games. And we cannot think of video games without thinking of history either. Games that deal with history are sold in ever-increasing numbers, striving to create increasingly lively images of things past. For the science of history, this means that the presentation of historical content in such games has to be questioned, as well as the conceptions of history they embody. How do games create the feeling that they portray a past acceptable to their players? Do these popular representations of history intersect with academic narratives, or not? While a considerable body of work on similar questions already exists, both for medieval history as well as for those games dealing with the 20th century, early modernity has not yet been treated in this context. As many games draw their imagery - perhaps their success, too - from the years between 1450 and 1815, it is to their understanding that this volume is dedicated. The contributions encompass a wide range of subjects and games, from 'Age of Empires' to 'Assassin's Creed', from Critical Discourse Analysis to Ludology. One aim unites them, namely an understanding of what happens when video games encounter early modernity.
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Tobias Winnerling studied History, Philosophy and Japanology, passing his PhD with distinction in 2013. He is currently Research Assistant at the Chair of Early Modern History at Dusseldorf University, Germany, and is interested in the history of knowledge, the material history of the sciences, history in popular narratives, European-Asian interaction history, and, of course, video games. Florian Kerschbaumer is a Research Assistant at the History Department of the Alpen-Adria-Universitat Klagenfurt, Austria. His research focuses on the history of international relations, the history of civil society and social movements, the abolition of slavery, historical network research, as well as history and new media.Review:
"There is plenty about Early Modernity and Video Games to like. [...] Its overall content is drastically underexposed in the larger academic field and the arrival of this book is a promising signal all by itself. Beyond this, the book manages to fulfil much of what it sets out to do, which is to study videogames from a historical perspective. [...] For any scholars looking to find a solid source of inspiration or reference regarding videogames and history, this is an excellent book to begin with." David Hussey First Person Scholar, 27.5.15 "This publication is worth reading and deserves the attention of a general audience." Carlotta Potter MEDIENwissenschaft, Sonderpublikation - Studentische Ausgabe (2015)
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