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Michigan State University

Game Studies Guild: Archive

Past Events and Related Resources

First Meeting & Critical Let's Play Event: Five Nights at Freddy's & Responses to Anxiety in Gaming 10/19/2017

(No readings)

Planning Group Meeting 11/09/2017
Overwatch & Cultural Appropriation 11/30/2017
  • See 11/09/2017 Planning Group Meeting items (below)
  • Watch Overwatch short films or compilation (links below)
  • Play Overwatch to get a sense of community and cultural norms
Akiba's Trip & Differing Regional Norms 2/26/2018
Thunderbird Strike & Indigenous Game Dev 3/26/2018
Breath of the Wild & Gender Representation 4/23/2018
Fortnite & The Battle Royale Phenomenon 9/23/2018


Bloodborne & Academia as an Arm of Colonization Ft. Robin Aultz 10/17/2018
Fire Emblem Heroes & F2P vs P2W, Gacha vs. Gambling 11/14/2018
Celeste, Borderlands, Skullgirls, and Pokémon in Accessibility & Gaming, 12/5/2018


Dark Souls | "Transmisogyny and Translation" with Robin Aultz, 1/23/2019
Halo: Combat Evolved | "Speedrunning and Intended Play" with Ronny Ford and special guest Ayre, 2/20/2019
  • Primary Material
  1. General theory of speedrunning:
  2. The Stanley Parable, Dark Souls, and Intended Play:


  • Supplemental Material
  1. Speedrun improvements over time (BotW):
  2. Developer takes on speedrunning:
  3. The Aesthetics of Speedrunning:
  4. Conference paper version of above:
  5. On Speedrunning in Final Fantasy:
  6. Origins of speedrunning:
  7. On Speedrunning’s narrative implications in Zombie games:
  8. On Speedrunning Communities and E-Sports:
  9. Speedrun variants: 
  10. On Tool-Assisted Speedrunning:


  • Book Chapters:
  1. First Chapter of Metagaming:
  2. Ludopolitics has a section:
  • Theses
  1. Tokarski, Justin C., "A meditation on loss within games" 


World of Warcraft | "History and Worldbuilding" with Daniel Fandino, 3/20/2019

Gone Home | "Queer Games" with Cody Mejeur, 4/10/2019
  • Greer, Sam. “Queer Representation in Games Isn’t Good Enough, but It Is Getting Better.” Gamesradar, 15 May 2018,
  • Kagan, Melissa. “Walking Simulators and the Gender of Wandering.” The Year’s Work in Nerds, Wonks, and Neocons, edited by Jonathan P. Eburne and Benjamin Schreier, Indiana University Press, 2017.
  • Kopas, Merritt. “On Gone Home.” Queer Game Studies, edited by Bonnie Ruberg and Adrienne Shaw, University of Minnesota Press, 2017, pp. 145–52.
  • Pavlounis, Dimitrios. “Straightening Up the Archive: Queer Historiography, Queer Play, and the Archival Politics of Gone Home.” Television & New Media, vol. 17, no. 7, Nov. 2016, pp. 579–94. Crossref, doi:10.1177/1527476416631627.


Rovi Vault Hunting: Every Friday, 11:30am - 1:30pm all summer long (2019)
Join Jonah and/or the occasional GSG special guest for an interactive, package-to-pixels plunge into a different title from the Rovi Gaming Collection. From MSU Libraries’ Video Game Labs to your screen, via Twitch, we will unpack and play with a critical eye. Will old classics hold up, or will new problems emerge under a modern social lens? Do technological advances offer more meaningful ways to play? How can video games support scholarship, anyway? Tune in and help us find out!

5/24 Heavy Rain

6/21 Mirror's Edge

6/28 Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn

7/5 Mass Effect 3

7/12 Prison Architect

7/19 Farming Simulator

7/26 Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City

8/2 Fire Emblem: Three Houses

Special thanks to Chelsea Ryan for co-hosting!

Huge thanks to original co-founder Cody Mejeur! He may have earned a PhD, and moved on to a teaching position, but he will always be a Guild member in our hearts.
Michigan State University