Art project: COLL.EO (Colleen Flaherty and Matteo Bittanti)

COLL.EO is a collaboration between Colleen Flaherty and Matteo Bittanti established in 2012. It explores new media, city geographies, playfulness, activism, politics and other interests – with an artsy approach.

I especially like the City Blocks project, a type of Memory game built upon images from Google Street View that aims at discussing the differences in socioeconomic outlooks of different neighborhoods.

See it for yourself at

Free ebook: Knutepunkt 2015, on Live Action Role Playing (LARP)

Knutepunkt (Solmukohta in Finnish) books have for a long time been inspiring mix of role-play theories, artistic manifestoes, and practical, larp design or game-running advice. The Knutepunkt book 2015 is no exception.

(I’m reblogging Frans Mayra’s blog post about this. Thanks!)

Here is link to the PDF version (published ahead of the actual event), and outline of the contents:

The Knudepunkt 2015 Companion Book
Eds. Charles Bo Nielsen & Claus Raasted

Full book link:

Table of contents:
Foreword 6
Claus Raasted

6 levels of substitution: The Behaviour Substitution Model 8
Lauri Lukka

Behind the larp census: 29.751 larpers can’t (all) be wrong 16
Aaron Vanek

Four Backstory Building Games You Can Play Anywhere!: Simple and effective 24
Peter Woodworth

Infinite Firing Squads: The evolution of The Tribunal 30
J.Tuomas Harviainen

Ingame or offgame?: Towards a typology of frame switching 34 between in-character and out-of-character
Olga Vorobyeva

Learning by playing: Larp as a teaching metod 42
Myriel Balzer & Julia Kurz

Looking at you: Larp, documentation and being watched 56
Juhana Pettersson

Now That We’ve Walked The Walk…: Some new additions to the larp vocabulary 62
Bjørn Flindt Temte

On Publicity and Privacy: Or “How do you do your documentation?” 70
Jamie MacDonald

Painting larp: Using art terms for clarity 78
Jacob Nielsen

Processing political larps: Framing larp experiences with strong agendas 82
Kaisa Kangas

Safe words: And how to use them 88
Nathan Hook

Steering For Immersion in Five Nordic larps: A new understanding of eläytyminen 94
Mike Pohjola

The Art of Steering: Bringing the Player and the Character Back Together 106
Markus Montola, Jaakko Stenros & Eleanor Saitta

The Blockbuster Formula: Brute Force Design in 118 The Monitor Celestra and College of Wizardry
Eirik Fatland & Markus Montola

The D-M creative agenda model: An axis instead of a pyramid 132
Nathan Hook

The Golden Cobra Challenge: Amateur-Friendly Pervasive Freeform Design 138
Evan Torner, Whitney “Strix” Beltrán, Emily Care Boss & Jason Morningstar

There is no Nordic larp: And yet we all know what it means 142
Stefan Deutsch

Workshop practice: A functional workshop structure method 148
Mo Holkar

Ending: The larper’s burden 156
Claus Raasted

For more, see:

Article: Reconceptualising gamification. Play and pedagogy

Gamification surely is a controversial topic. Rowan Tulloch writes: “This paper will challenge the foundation of this debate through reconceptualising gamification not as a simple set of techniques and mechanics, but as a pedagogic heritage, an alternative framework for training and shaping participant behaviour that has at its core the concepts of entertainment and engagement. In doing so it will recontextualise current practices of gamification into a longer and deeper history, and suggest potential pathways for more sophisticated gamification in the future”.

Read the full paper for free at

Free ebook: City Data Future – Interactions in Hybrid Urban Space

The UrbanIxD project takes the view that cities in the future will contain a tangled mesh of interconnected, heterogeneous technological systems. Technology will continue to evolve, and the data reading and writing capabilities of cities will only increase, but mess and complexity will still be the background context. City Data Future speculates about the possible futures that city inhabitants might experience.

Download the ebook here, and read more about the UrbanIxD project at

New issue of the Journal of Games Criticism

A new issue of the Journal of Games Criticism has been published.

Volume 2, Issue 1 features a series of exciting articles from game developers, game critics, and game studies scholars. Velli-Matti Karhulahti offers hermeneutics as a method for ludocriticism, and Michael Heron and Pauline Belford discuss the history of choose your own adventure and narrative games. Next, Stephanie Jennings tackles the importance of subjectivity for the critic. Victor Navarro-Remesal and Antonio Loriguillo-Lόpez explore the intersection of Manga, Anime, and Gému within Cool Japan. Our invited articles include Robert Rath who develops explanatory game criticism as a solution to barriers for tangential learning and David Parisi who delves deeply into the importance and stability of the video game controller across new generations of platforms.

Read the full issue for free at

The world’s first self destructing book

Novelist James Patterson just published a novel that self-destruct after 24 hours, and allows people to follow the readers’ progress on a live website

Actually, the initiative is part of a publicity campaign – the same book will be available in the future also without a self-destruct timer – but I think that this type of interactivity could be an interesting twist on the ebook format.

Conference: Experimental Narratives. From the Novel to Digital Storytelling

“Experimental Narratives. From the Novel to Digital Storytelling” (London, 26-27 February 2015). An interdisciplinary conference at the Institute of Modern Languages Research, University of London. With Marie-Laure Ryan giving a keynote and Astrid Ensslin presenting her work, I’m very sad not to be in the UK for this event.

Full program and registration details at

Free ebook: Urban Screens Reader

“The Urban Screens Reader is the first book to focus entirely on the topic of urban screens. In assembling contributions from a range of leading theorists, in conjunction with a series of case studies dealing with artists’ projects and screen operators’ and curators’ experiences, the reader offers a rich resource for those interested in the intersections between digital media, cultural practices and urban space.”

Download the ebook for free at