This is an archive of a past course's class materials from 2011. Present "Games & Society" students should look elsewhere to find their coursework; consult your current syllabus for more information.
The designer and intstructor of this lab course, Jason McIntosh, has written notes and commentary about this course which may be of interest to other teachers. You can contact the author at email@example.com.
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It’s the last week of class! We’ve got one more meeting (at least for two-thirds of you), and there’s some final matters involving the previous quiz’s extra-credit question, as well as class evaluation.
The Week 11 quiz included an extra-credit take-home question at the end. For your reference, here it is again. You may email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) your answer before Thursday, December 8, 2011.
Choose any game we studied during any lab meeting other than Week 11’s. It can be a videogame or a tabletop game. In a paragraph or two, make an argument that this game advanced a particular political agenda or artistic statement, even if that wasn’t the game’s central purpose (as opposed to the games we looked at in Week 11).
Need a reminder as to what games we studied? Have a look at the Games and Assignments list on the class homepage.
The end of the semester means it’s evaluation time. You all should have received information regarding the TRACE survey for your fall courses. I mentioned in class that I’d reward evaluations by dropping the lowest quiz score of every student who completes the survey, but I’m going to go ahead and just do that for everyone anyway. Please do make my generosity count by filling out that survey before its due date of Sunday, Dec. 18.
We’re using the honor system for this; there’s no need to send me any proof that you completed the survey. All responses are presented to us instructors anonymously. Let me know if you have any questions about this.
Let’s end on an upbeat note, playing rules-light games that a whole bunch of people can play at once. Perhaps we will play Werewolf, a darkly humorous game for up to twelve players, or Action Castle, a simple adventure game that supports as many players as you choose to provide it.
(Here's a short video review of Werewolf by some guy with less facial hair than me. (Ironically?) )
Because the Friday section of GAME1111 doesn’t meet at all this week, I won’t take attendance or give a quiz to the rest of you. Yes, this means that attendance is effectively optional.
On that note, we’ll also probably look at one or two of the game-related videos I have produced in the past. I have tried to avoid being one of those teachers who uses his own stuff as class material, but now that we’re past the point of grading, all bets are off.
If you have any lingering questions or concerns about this lab or your performance in it, please contact me before December 12. After that, your grades are wholly in Brian’s hands.
Au revoir, auf Weidersehen. I hope you enjoyed this semester as much as I did. We tried some new things in the Games & Society lab this fall, and you all helped shape the path it took. Perhaps you noticed, for example, that the quizzes changed shape over the weeks from rote multiple-choice questions about rules to more interesting essay questions about the games we played in class. That was an on-the-fly improvement I’m pleased with, and one I plan to see continue with the start of this lab’s next iteration.
I invite you all to stay in touch with me as you continue forward with games studies, whether academically or on your own time; my non-NU email address is email@example.com. Once this semester is put to bed, I intend to resume posting to my own game blog, The Gameshelf ( http://gameshelf.jmac.org ). If you’d like to hear what my game criticism sounds like when I actually have a chance to edit myself, as opposed to chattering away at the front of a classroom, please feel free to follow me there.
Best of luck in your finals. Happy holidays, and good travels.