Perception in Games and Virtual Worlds II

May 10, 2024 - May 11, 2024
Department of Philosophy, University of Bergen

Lausitzer Str. 21a, Berlin

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Game Philosophy Network

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Both traditional games and games that take place in virtual environments rely on play-states designed around their perceptual features. This is apparent by the fact that they prominently rely on phenomenal spatial structures, but also by a variety of perceptual roles that enter into elements like storytelling, sound, kinesthetic feedback and immersive design. 

How should we understand the character of perception in games and virtual environments?  While normal perception registers ordinary perceptual properties, players perceive objects and properties imposed by images, rules, symbols and ludic context. In the perception of virtual worlds, users are not perceiving ordinary objects, but rather images and symbols designed to instil imagination and to convey semantic contents. In traditional games the players perceive objects and properties determined by rules and play. 

This workshop follows up a seminar held in Athens 2022 with a view to develop the discussions on these issues. Among the questions we wish to explore are:

  • Is perception in virtual worlds veridical? Is it appropriate to talk of perception in virtual worlds?

  • Do we perceive game properties?

  • How should we understand subjectivity and perception mediated by avatars?

  • How do cultural and ideological frames shape perceptual experience?

  • How does the reality status of objects and properties affect the characterization of perceptual content?

  • What are the phenomenal characteristics of gaming experiences?

  • How is narrative, fictional worlds and gaming structured around perceptual states?

  • How is imagination, make-believe and fantasy related to perception in games?

  • How are perceptual schema like space, time, objecthood and modality utilized in gaming?

  • What is the relationship between inference and perceptual content in games?

  • How do we perceive affordances in games?

  • Can the perceptual content of games be analyzed as “seeing as”?

  • What are the phenomenal characteristics of perceptual experiences that are distinctive to ludic environments?

  • How should we characterize the consciousness that accompanies perception of games and virtual environments?

Contributions from different scholarly approaches are welcome, such as game studies, cognitive science, enactivist perception theory, phenomenology, fiction theory, media philosophy, and classic philosophies of perception.

There will be a small fee (ca 40 euro) to cover rent for the seminar room.

Program committee:

Anita Leirfall, Department of Philosophy, University of Bergen, Norway

John R. Sageng, Game Philosophy Network, Norway

Stephan Günzel, University of Europe for Applied Sciences, Germany

Jussi Holopainen, City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Olli Tapio Leino, City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Zuzanna Rucinska, University of Antwerp, Belgium

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April 11, 2024, 9:00am CET

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