Episode 15: Augmented Reality and social norms – with Andrew Adams

A sign in a church inviting Pokemon Go players into church

In which Catherine and Tyr wrangle another fascinating victim special guest at ETHICOMP 2018, Prof. Andrew Adams, to talk about Pokémon Go and augmented reality games more generally. (Yes, another Pokémon Go one. I think we’re almost all out of material on Pokémon Go now.)

We talk social norms about Pokémon Go in Japan vs. other places, and safety while playing these games, that came out of a paper Andrew wrote about augmented reality games and the issues with large uptake of such games (disruption, poor locations of Pokestops, etc.).

We get interrupted by a Polish war memorial ceremony in the park outside our hotel, which is ironic because we talk about fighting in gyms at war memorials, as well as churches (and particularly Quaker meeting houses) and the discomfort that augmented reality games can sometimes bring when data is not perfect, or not used appropriately.

We also look at some of the upsides of Pokémon Go too though, so it’s not all doom and gloom!

I would link to Andrew’s paper on this but he hasn’t finished it yet. 🙂

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Episode 14: Twinkle Ponies – with Erica Neely on Ethics of Lootboxes

Loot box picture

Hello! In this episode I have to apologise for the sound quality; we were recording at ETHICOMP 2018 in Sopot, Poland and the room was a bit more echoey than expected (and noisier) and apparently I didn’t point the microphone in quite the right direction. The sound does get better as the episode goes on. But still, we have excellent content as we are with Dr Erica Neely, who gave an amazing talk about the ethics of loot boxes! We talk about loot boxes, paying for levels, paying for gear, cheating, catching up, reputation, and fairness for a bit, then Tyr comes up with an amazing song about Twinkle Ponies. (Apparently songs after the credits is now a Thing, so enjoy!) ✨🦒✨

We now have a Patreon, if you’d like to support us by kicking us a dollar or two per episode! We plan to have fortnightly episodes. $5/episode unlocks a space on our Patreon where you can suggest topics for us to talk about 😀

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Dr Erica Neely


Episode 13: Women Who Game

Back to our regular schedule! In this episode, we had a loadddd of technical issues which meant that we lost a bit of discussion, sadly (my poor old laptop couldn’t cope with a browser window being open while recording. Let’s just say old laptop has now gone to the “backup machine” pile now 🙁 but I have a shiny new laptop, so that’s nice!)

We were responding in this episode to the online discussions about women who game, and particularly this tweet, which was by a friend of mine, about women who play D&D. (The original tweet that Evelyn was retweeting was about how no women play D&D!)

The discussion we lost in the technicals was about ArenaNet, and how we like to give them money, but we don’t really want to any more because they basically not only fired a female employee for pushing back against mansplaining, but a male colleague who supported her. And we didn’t like that much. So that’s basically the bits you missed.

We are also launching a Patreon! You can see it here: https://www.patreon.com/notjustagame 

We’ll be making more noise about it as we get back into recording more frequently. If you like what you hear though, please consider dropping us a dollar a show! It’ll help pay for our producer and more gear so we can record remotely while we are both travelling.

(PS featured image is my old retired laptop and some prep I was doing for a D&D game one time!)

Episode 12: PAX East 2018 BRAAAAAAAINS! Archaeology and Philosophy of Zombies in Games followup

Grrrr arrrrrghhh! We have risen from the (summertime busy-ness) dead and feasted on brains responded to all of your questions from our PAX East panel on our video!

Our plans for this podcast are growing as well – we now plan to do recordings more frequently, have actually put a standing two hour block of podcast recording time into our diaries, and have enlisted some editorial/production support as well. So we are taking this rather seriously now! Stay tuned – we hope to launch a patreon in the coming weeks to help cover the costs of running the podcast.

Video and slides of our PAX East talk

Episode 11 – PAX East Pokémon Go followup

You may have seen our talk at PAX East on the Ethics of Pokémon Go – either live or via the YouTube video available at: https://www.notjustagame.eu/2018/05/07/video-interlude-pax-east-2018-ethics-of-pokemon-go/

In this episode we follow up with some of the questions we didn’t get to in the talk – it’s a bit longer than our usual episodes, and we’ll go back to normal after the second of these on zombies and brains, following up the other talk we did on archaeology and philosophy of zombies in video games!


Video Interlude – PAX East 2018: BRAAAAAAAINS! Archaeology and Philosophy of Zombies in Games

In this talk from PAX East 2018, Tyr Fothergill and Catherine Flick discuss the archaeology and philosophy of zombies in video games, and how these can be used to help scientists in large neuroscience projects understand the importance of research ethics. We will be doing some follow up podcast episodes to discuss some of the questions more thoroughly as well.

Recorded live a PAX East 2018; presentation available to view separately.


Episode 10 – Zombies!

Tyr and I are off to PAX East again, this time we will be talking about zombies (and Pokémon Go!)!

We were so excited we  invited some special guests to come play Left 4 Dead 2 with us (yes, they are our very patient and lovely husbands, Martin and Ray). Listen in to some of the shenanigans we got up to, and some thoughts about zombies, realism, decay, and why zombie games are so popular!

We have never played this game before and we are not very good at FPSes, so enjoy our attempts to TPK too!

Our talk on zombies at PAX East is on at 4:30-5:30PM on Saturday: BRAAAAAIIIIINS: Archaeology and Philosophy of Zombies in Games

Our talk on Pokémon Go! is on Friday 5:00-6:00PM: Ethics of Pokémon Go!

Music excerpts in this episode are from the Left 4 Dead 2 soundtrack – we use them for academic purposes!

Games mentioned:

  • Left 4 Dead 2
  • Last of Us
  • Half Life (2)

Many thanks to Ray and Martin for putting up with me axing them in the back.

Episode 9: Old Skool Gaming

Happy New Year!

We take this episode to look back at some old skool gaming. What were our first computers, consoles, and games? Do you remember any of these games? What are your first gaming memories? Caution: spoilers for Return to Zork.

This one took a while to edit due to some technical difficulties, sorry!

Systems mentioned:

  • IBM PC 286
  • Atari
  • BBC Microbee
  • Apple II
  • PlayStation 2
  • Nintendo Entertainment System
  • Pentium 90

Games mentioned (some downloadable for free!):

  • Castle Adventure
  • Adventure
  • Nethack/roguelikes
  • Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? (with the Almanac and Book of Facts)
  • Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing
  • Alpine Tram Ride
  • Granny’s Garden
  • Prince of Persia (which you can now get the source code of from github!)
  • Prince of Persia Sands of Time
  • Monkey Island
  • Might and Magic II
  • Heroes of Might and Magic
  • Doom
  • Myst
  • Simon the Sorcerer
  • King’s Quest VI
  • Call of Duty
  • Elder Scrolls Online
  • Space Invaders
  • Legend of Kyrandia III: Malcolm’s Revenge
  • Zork
  • Return to Zork
  • Super Mario Bros
  • Star Wars Rebel Assault
  • Descent