LIS Trends

New Directions for Academic Video Game Collections: Strategies for Acquiring, Supporting, and Managing Online Materials

with 3 comments

This article looks at the evolution of gaming and how that affects libraries, in particular, their collections.  Many university libraries have begun offering a more extensive collection of gaming options for their students to reflect the changing academic options that have begun to delve much deeper into gaming than before.  As the focus on gaming expands, libraries work to expand their collection to help with the development and research of gaming and to showcase the various gaming platforms available.

This article looks at what research has previously been done on gaming and how updates have been made to various libraries to begin to include gaming in a much larger way than ever before.  The various gaming platforms are reviewed and discussed, and one library that successful has developed a 5-year plan gives some insight and overview into what they did to begin the implementation plan of updating their gaming collection.  There is also a brief overview of the different kinds of gaming out there and where the authors think they will be going in the next few years.

Gaming, in particular online gaming and massive multiplayer online games have been growing steadily for the past few years.  I like to see how various libraries are working to expand their collections to include things that are obviously a phenomenon that continues to grow.  I also liked how the article talked about other types of gaming that are gaining ground – independent and artistic games, serious gaming, research gaming and other formats.  It’s important to the evolution of not just gaming but also of libraries and collections and what changes need to be made to incorporate the updates into the library culture.  It’ll be very interesting to see what the next few years bring to the gaming culture as well as how that affects the library culture and subsequent collections.


Written by mantha1126

October 19, 2012 at 9:49 am

Posted in Uncategorized

3 Responses

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  1. It’s exciting to see how much the stigma that hung over video games and video gamers is lifting in recent years. It is slightly unrelated, but I do believe it is part of a larger cultural change in how we perceive hobbies such as this. Before, they were seen as activities by shut-ins or those who were otherwise socially unequipped or awkward. However, I think gaming in particular in falling into a category of hobbies and activities that are becoming associated with high-profile, successful, socially well-adjusted, and intelligent people and the trend is carrying over. I also believe it is part of a larger cultural trend that emphasizes embracing the activities and hobbies that make us unique and that we truly enjoy, rather than worrying over what is conventionally well accepted by society.

    Actually, I read an interesting BBC article related to this, here:

    Not to mention, MMOs in particular could really just be considered one form of social media, which suffice to say is fairly embedded into our culture already.

    I think it is no surprise that libraries are responding to this phenomena and riding the wave of change because essentially, that is what libraries do and that is how they survive.

    Speaking of collections, as someone interested preservation side of things, I only hope that libraries (and archives as well) take this opportunity to create lasting bonds not only with gamers themselves, but with the gaming industry in protecting the legacy of this genre, the same way that they have done so with books and other types of media.


    November 24, 2012 at 11:39 pm

  2. As a gamer myself, I’m glad to see video games finally get some respect. Video games really are one of the new emerging art forms (in fact, I’d say that many of the best games in recent years have been better than many recent films). As with any software, little attention has been paid to the preservation of video games–there are already at least several hundred “abandonware” titles that are nearly impossible to find through legal channels.

    The histories of film and television can serve as a cautionary tale. Many classic films and television shows are now lost forever because their owners didn’t see their cultural value and recycled the film and tape. It would be a terrible shame if something similar happened to video games, so I’m glad to see that libraries are taking steps to prevent this from happening.

    Robert Sullivan

    November 26, 2012 at 3:03 pm

  3. I am incredibly pleased that video games are being viewed as an art form and a socially acceptable hobbie, instead of as an activity that leads to violence and socially awkward people. As Courtney mentioned, it is no surprise that libraries are responding to this and that they have begun to bring video games into their collections. I can only hope that the games are seen as worth preserving in the long run and that they last through the many uses that they are undoubtedly getting from patrons.

    Sarah Mahoney

    November 27, 2012 at 1:00 am

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