As we begin this new chapter at Archaeogaming.com, I want to start off by introducing myself, what types of questions I want to explore as an archaeogamer, and what kinds of directions I want take the blog. First off, I am an American trained archaeologist (BA from the University of South Florida in Anthropology) and a current a PhD student at USF in the Department of History. My current work outside of archaeogaming focuses on digital archaeology and cultural heritage. At the Institute for Digital Exploration (IDEx), we use 3D technologies (digital photogrammetry, laser scanning, and structured light scanning) to preserve, educate, and research various archaeological and cultural heritage sites both locally and globally.
Since the goals of virtual and digital heritage often intersect with that of archaeogaming in their development and presentation of research and preservation of sites and cultures, I often find myself asking questions about gaming’s application to these studies and vice versa. At conferences and in the literature gaming and gamification in digital cultural heritage as a means for dissemination of knowledge and facilitation of new research questions in the digital space, I hear about the merging of gaming and archaeology. In the news, I hear about the technologies and techniques that I use for digitizing cultural heritage and research are being used in digital games to bring a greater amount of realism to the games. In future posts, I want to explore some of these intersections.
In terms of what digital games I tend to play and study, it’s games the genres of Dragon Age, Skyrim, Fallout, Mass Effect, Uncharted, and (of course) Horizon Zero Dawn. While these tend to be AAA games, there are many indie games that I would love to explore in the future. But for now, these are games that I have been thinking about for a long time and have more developed ideas for. In terms of analogue games, I tend to play and study anything and everything from Dungeons and Dragons to Settlers of Catan to Arkham Horror. Magic: the Gathering, especially with their efforts to become an accepted eSport with MTG Arena (the new online platform which is currently in an open beta), has many aspects that can be adapted from archaeogaming for study. It is within these realms that I will likely begin my posts. Additionally, a few colleagues of mine have volunteered posts about Eve: Online, other MMOs, and analogue RPGs.
I want to talk about games new and old of all shapes, sizes, and themes. Games like Detroit: Become Human which doesn’t have archaeological content but, I believe, has answers to a few questions in digital heritage and archaeogaming. The quantity of games means that there is plenty to explore and unlimited questions to be asked. There are a wealth of games which would benefit from study and provide new insights in archaeogaming.
All of these topics can (and should) be covered from a multitude of perspectives. I want archaeogaming to be a place where we discuss and present new ideas from a variety of backgrounds and authors. This means that if you have an idea or would like to write something for archaeogaming, I want to hear from you. If you have an idea for a post or would like to guest post, reach out to the archaeogaming email (firstname.lastname@example.org). You can also contact me through the @archaeogaming or my personal (@kingsland_k) Twitter.
For updates and new posts, check back here every other Friday for new content. Be sure to follow @archaeogaming on Twitter to stay up to date. And in the words of Wil Wheaton: play more games!
— Kaitlyn Kingsland, Archaeogaming
1 June 2019