Toward a Theory of Computer Game Fiction: Form, Structure, and Interpretation
doctoral dissertation by Tamer Thabet
Abstract. As a rapidly growing cultural phenomenon, computer games and their stories have matured to imply more than sheer entertainment, and call for systematic scholarly attention. The purpose of this dissertation is to present a new perspective on computer game fiction by illuminating the player’s personal fictional experience in the game story. It is vital to understand game fiction in terms of its own form and structure, and so I conceptualize that the game story takes the form of a challenge, while the narratological analysis designates the game player both as a co narrator and a protagonist. The need for an interpretive strategy for game fiction arises when the story in games transforms conceptually into a challenge and when the player becomes a character who tells and perceives, and hence the Player-response Interpretive Model. The critical paradigm developed through this study reveals that the fictional world in games allows the player to discover, experience, and reevaluate his/her identity theme.