Additional reading

Say it with a computer game


Some of the idea in the book first appeared in my 2013 article for the Game Studies journal, called Say it with a Computer Game: Hobby Computer Culture and the Non-entertainment Uses of Homebrew Games in the 1980s Czechoslovakia. It focuses specifically on the motivations of amateur programmers to create games.

You can read the article right here.

The abstract follows:

Focusing on the specific context of the 1980s Czechoslovakia, this article makes a historical argument for treating the production of games as something more than the mere production of entertainment. Based on archival research, interviews and qualitative analyses of individual titles, it shows that entertainment was only one of the intended functions of homebrew games. Although Czechoslovak game developers were familiar with the developments in the West, they could not form a game industry due to the absence of free enterprise. They were therefore left to explore various niches of game design. Instead of providing entertainment, many computer games were used by their designers to showcase coding skills, to deliver messages to other members of the hobbyist community, or to reflect on the excesses of the Communist regime. Thanks to an efficient distribution system and a relatively low barrier of entry, computer games established themselves in the 1980s as a prominent communication medium within the Czech computer hobbyist and gaming communities.

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