The aim of this paper is to clarify the nature of agency inside a gaming environment. The problem with understanding in-game agency is that reports of player actions with reference to a graphical game environment is unclear both with regard to the literal content of the actions performed as well who is the proper owner. While we refer to cases of “walking”, “shooting”, “breaking” and the like inside the game, they are clearly none of those things, and nor is it clear that they are supposed to attributed to a fictional in-game subject or to the player at his controls.
Taking a page from externalism in the philosophy of mind, this paper offers an account of in-game action based on the diagnosis that the element of control forces a shift from the represented fictional object to a real on-screen graphical environment. Utilizing the proposal that the basic actions of the player are directed at non-representational graphical happenings, it spells out the typical actions performed inside the game environment and indicates how they should be evaluated.
- Video Game
- Game Play
- Fictional Character
- Pictorial Representation
- Causal Interaction
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