Call for Abstracts: Git Gud’ and Other Stories: The Influence of Open Culture on Game Experiences

deadline for submissions: 
August 31, 2024
full name / name of organization: 
MultiPlay Network UK
contact email: 

This volume will explore the outsized influence of community discourses on how games are experienced. Cultures and discourses surrounding games significantly impact player experiences. Salen and Zimmerman (2004) describe open cultural contexts where "the exchange of meaning between a game and its surrounding cultural context can change and transform both the game and its environment”. Consalvo (2007) discusses how videogame paratexts, including guides and wikis, serve crucial functions in understanding approaches to gameplay. Similarly, Mukherjee (2015) views games as multifaceted “assemblages” that are deeply informed by surrounding cultures and communities. Discourses within these communities influence the genre expectations and embodied literacies of players (Keogh 2018), allowing specific ludoliteracies to develop (Davidson 2011). The popular phrase “Git Gud” exemplifies how expectations of players has evolved and is typically seen in difficult games like Dark Souls (From Software 2011) – a game which itself has myriad paratexts in the form of game guides, streams, community forums, and lore explainers. Caldwell-Gervais (2022) explores this complex cultural assemblage in a video essay exploring how community expectations of play affected their player experience with the game.

To further explore this new frontier of games and the cultures they reside in/create, we are seeking chapter proposals examining how communities develop, discuss, read, and inform games and the cultures around them. Potential topics include:

  • Conflict between ‘official’ design and community-defined ‘proper’ experiences
  • Community constructions of ‘cheating’ and ‘fairness’
  • Discourse on difficulty vs accessibility
  • ‘Pay to win’ design as ‘officially endorsed cheating’
  • Evolution and mutation of ‘metas’ in competitive games
  • Inclusion and exclusion of player groups within game communities
  • The role of influencers, Let’s Play-ers, guide creators, and wiki editors in creating game paratexts
  • Ethnographic studies of games and/or communities
  • Individual vs communal play experiences
  • Non-digital games and their communities
  • The influence and use of social media and/or console platforms in managing game communities

Proposals should include the contributor’s name, brief biography (100 words), and an abstract (max 500 words, not counting citations). Submit proposals to You may also contact the editors with any questions.

Editors: Kevin Veale ( and Adam Jerrett (

Project Timeline:

  • Deadline for abstracts: August 31st, 2024
  • Notices of acceptance: mid-September 2024
  • Chapter submission due: December 20th, 2024
  • Estimated publication: end of 2025

Once sufficient abstracts have been received, book proposals will be sent to various publishers, some of whom the MultiPlay network has published with previously. These include Bloomsbury, Palgrave MacMillan, and Intellect Books, among others.



Consalvo, Mia. 2007. Cheating: Gaining Advantage in Videogames. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press.

Davidson, Drew. 2011. “The Performance of Gameplay: Developing a Ludoliteracy.” Eludamos: Journal for Computer Game Culture 5 (1): 1–3.

Keogh, Brendan. 2018. A Play of Bodies: How We Perceive Videogames. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press.

From Software. 2011. Dark Souls. Namco Bandai Games.

Mukherjee, Souvik. 2015. Video Games and Storytelling: Reading Games and Playing Books. Palgrave Macmillan UK.

Noah Caldwell-Gervais, dir. 2022. I Beat the Dark Souls Trilogy and All I Made Was This Lousy Video Essay.

Salen, Katie, and Eric Zimmerman. 2004. Rules of Play: Game Design Fundamentals. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press.