“The Ludic Outlaw: Medievalism, Games, Sport, and Play,” a special issue

deadline for submissions: 
July 31, 2020
full name / name of organization: 
The Bulletin of the International Association for Robin Hood Studies
contact email: 

From the early Atari single-player arcade game Outlaw to more recent videogames such as Activision Blizzard’s multiplayer Overwatch, modern digital outlaws have long been popular characters in gaming culture. These characters often work to resist authoritarianism within their respective gaming worlds, and they frequently evoke much older outlaw representations, such as the Robin Hood of medieval ballads, by embodying popular definitions of justice and communal welfare. 


This special issue of The Bulletin of the International Association for Robin Hood Studies

welcomes papers that examine the specific ways in which enduring medieval outlaw tropes in modern games function as model responses to oppression. Particular attention will be given to submissions that focus on broadly defined digital ludic outlaws, though papers concerned with modern tabletop games, live action role-playing games, and immersive theater are welcome. Papers on early modern May games and festivals will also be considered. Possible themes may include (but are not limited to) the following:


  • Parallels between outlaw literary traditions and modern games
  • Social positioning, otherness, and outlawry in games featuring playful medievalism(s)
  • Gender (re)definition and performance in outlaw games
  • Subversive materialities in ludic outlaw toolkits and inventories
  • Medieval architecture and its uses in digital outlaw spaces
  • Ergodic textuality and interactive outlaw narratives


Manuscripts of 2000-3000 words should be submitted to guest editor Gayle Fallon at lfallo1@lsu.edu by July 31, 2020. Submissions should be saved in Microsoft Word (.doc, .docx) and formatted according to the guidelines in the current Chicago Manual of Style. All work considered for this publication must not be previously published or under consideration elsewhere. Since manuscripts will go through a double-blind peer review, author names should not appear in documents or in file properties. More information about author guidelines can be found here.