Games Research Today

Analyzing the Academic Landscape 2000 – 2014

Overview

Since the turn of the century, games research has both become an established domain of study and broadly diversified the range of topics explored under the heading of "games". While this expansion can be viewed positively for the field as a whole, the large number of venues and topics can become overwhelming for researchers trying to understand where their work best fits and should be published. Some studies have tried to reduce this confusion by identifying paradigms of games research with respect to particular domains and venues, but little has been done to investigate the field as a whole. For our work, we have taken a data driven approach to gain a better understanding of the academic landscape of the Games Research field over the past 15 years where we collected and analyzed publications from 48 core publication venues of games research from the years 2000 through 2014. Our analysis utilizes co-occurrence methods and community detection techniques to provide a comprehensive overview of the field. With co-word analysis we identified 20 distinct research themes, and through co-venue analysis we also determined 7 communities for these themes. We visualized results using co-occurrence analysis artifacts such as strategic diagrams and keyword network maps.

Publications

[PDF] Melcer, Edward, Truong-Huy Dinh Nguyen, Zhengxing Chen, Alessandro Canossa, Magy Seif El-Nasr, and Katherine Isbister. "Games Research Today: Analyzing the Academic Landscape 2000 – 2014." Foundations of Digital Games. 2015. Best Paper in Game Studies.

 

Core Venues

Journal

Computers in Entertainment (CIE)

Eludamos. Journal for Computer Game Culture (Eludamos)

Entertainment Computing

Game Studies

GAME The Italian Journal of Game Studies (G|A|M|E)

Games and Culture (G & C)

IEEE Transactions on Computational Intelligence and AI in Games (TCIAIG)

International Computer Games Association Journal (ICGA)

International Digital Media and Arts Association (iDMAa)

International Journal of Arts and Technology (IJART)

International Journal of Computer Games Technology (IJCGT)

International Journal of Game-Based Learning (IJGBL)

International Journal of Gaming and Computer-Mediated Simulations (IJGCMS)

International Journal of Role-Playing (IJRP)

International Journal of Serious Games (IJSG)

Journal of Game Design and Development Education (JGDDE)

Journal of Game Development (JOGD)

Journal of Gaming & Virtual Worlds (JGVW)

Journal of Virtual Worlds Research (JVWR)

Simulation & Gaming (S&G)

The Computer Games Journal (TCGJ)

Well Played

Conference

AAAI Spring Symposium on AI and Interactive Entertainment (AAAISAIIE)

ACM SIGRAPH Sandbox Symposium (Sandbox)

Advances in Computer Entertainment Technology (ACE)

Artificial Intelligence and Interactive Digital Entertainment (AIIDE)

Computational Intelligence and Games (CIG)

Digital Games Research Association Conference (DIGRA)

European Conference on Games Based Learning (ECGBL)

Foundations of Digital Games (FDG)

Future Play

Games Learning Society (GLS)

Gamification

Intelligent Narrative Technologies Workshop (INT)

Intelligent Technologies for Interactive Entertainment (INTETAIN)

International Computer Games Conference (CGAMES)

International Conference on E-Learning and Games (Edutainment)

International Conference on Entertainment Computing (ICEC)

International Conference on Interactive Digital Storytelling (ICIDS)

International Conference on Virtual Storytelling (ICVS)

International Games Innovation Conference (IGIC)

International Simulation and Gaming Association Conference (ISAGA)

Meaningful Play

Serious Games Development and Applications (SGDA)

Technologies for Interactive Digital Storytelling and Entertainment (TIDSE)

The Philosophy of Computer Games

Under the Mask

Workshop on Network and Systems Support for Games (NetGames)

 

Research Themes

ID

10 Most Frequent Keywords

T1

Game Design, Serious Games, Game Based Learning, Educational Games, Game Development, Motivation, Case Study, Engagement, Gamification, Collaborative Learning

T2

Interactive Storytelling, Interactive Narrative, Role Playing, Real World, Multiplayer Online, Massively Multiplayer, Interactive Drama, Game World, Non Player, Digital Storytelling

T3

Real Time, Virtual Reality, Virtual Environments, Virtual Characters, Game Engine, Motion Capture, Time Strategy, Animation, Virtual Storytelling, Computer Animation

T4

Virtual Words, Massively Multiplayer Online Games, Second Life, Online Games, Avatars, Social Interaction, Gender, Multiplayer, World of Warcraft, Ethnography

T5

Gameplay, User Experience, Entertainment, Player Experience, Immersion, Usability, Flow, Interface, Ludology, Game Environment

T6

Narrative, Art, Interactivity, Emotion, Aesthetics, Music, Agency, Interactive Art, Affective Computing, Interactive Systems

T7

Game Theory, Evolutionary Computation, Computational Intelligence, Genetic Algorithms, Search Problems, Standards, Optimization, Trees Mathematics, Mathematical Model, Statistics

T8

Augmented Reality, Mixed Reality, User Interface, Pervasive Games, Mobile Games, Magic Circle, Mobile, Ubiquitous Computing, Mobile Gaming, Location Based

T9

Artificial Intelligence, Decision Making, Planning, Context, Cognition, Game AI, Multi-Agent Systems, Real-Time Systems, Human Player, Measurement

T10

Human Computer Interaction, Digital Media, Interaction Design, New Media, Psychology, Interactive Media, Human Factors, Interface Design, Level Design, Gesture Recognition

T11

Simulation, Role Play, History, Experiential Learning, Cooperation, Representation, Modeling, Negotiation, Participation, Simulation Gaming

T12

Learning Artificial Intelligence, Training, Machine Learning, Reinforcement Learning, Learning Systems, Game Playing, Data Mining, Sport, Predictive Models, Feature Extraction

T13

Servers, Internet, Computer Architecture, Mobile Computing, Delay, Peer to Peer Computing, Media, Tiles, Cloud Computing, Scalability

T14

Learning, Education, Children, Storytelling, Creativity, Teaching, Reflection, Tangible Interfaces, Educational Technology, Survey

T15

Humans, Neural Networks, Software Agents, Testing, Navigation, Computer Simulation, Artificial Neural Networks, Games of Skill, Robots

T16

Interaction, Communication, Role Playing Games, Player Behavior, Content Creation, Personality, Fun, Multi-Touch

T17

Educational Institutions, Computer Aided Instruction, Software Engineering, Software, Computer Science Education, Technological Innovation

T18

Collaboration, Board Games, Social Networks, Multiplayer Games, Social Media

T19

Monte Carlo Methods, Tree Searching, Algorithm Design and Analysis, Monte Carlo Tree Search

T20

Computational Modeling, Visualization, Engines, Databases

 

Keyword network map visualizing strong connections (Pearson correlation coefficient > .033) between the two most frequent keywords for each research theme.

 

Research Communities

ID

Conferences

5 Most Frequent Keywords

C1

DIGRA, S & G, JVWR, G & C, iDMAa, The Philosophy of Computer Games, JGVW, Game Studies, Eludamos, Under the Mask, ISAGA, G|A|M|E, IJRP

Virtual Worlds, Simulation, Game Design, Second Life, Role Playing

C2

ACE, ICEC, Edutainment, CIE, Intetain, Entertainment Computing, IJCGT, NetGames

Augmented Reality, Real Time, Virtual Reality, Game Design, Virtual Environments

C3

IJART, Sandbox, IGIC, FuturePlay, CGames, Gamification, JGDDE

Game Design, Serious Games, Education, Computer Aided Instruction, Human Computer Interaction

C4

CIG, AIIDE, FDG, TCIAIG, ICGA, INT

Artificial Intelligence, Game Theory, Humans, Evolutionary Computation, Computational Intelligence

C5

ICIDS, ICVS, TIDSE, AAAISAIIE, JOGD

Interactive Storytelling, Interactive Narrative, Real Time, Interactive Drama, Digital Storytelling

C6

GLS, Meaningful Play, IJGCMS, TCGJ, Well Played

Game Design, Gameplay, Educational Games, Real World, Case Study

C7

ECGBL, IJGBL, SGDA, IJSG

Game Based Learning, Serious Games, Game Design, Learning, Educational Games, Education, Assessment

 
Venue network map visualizing strong connections (Pearson correlation coefficient > .033) between the four largest venues for each research community.