Video Games and Multimodality: Exploring Interfaces and Analyzing Video Screens Using the GeM Model

in Multimodality

Abstract

With the purpose of showing that video game studies should become part of the emerging discipline of multimodality, the present chapter introduces the basics of the study of gameworlds and uses the multimodal document approach to analyze document-like screens coming from two video games: Football Manager 2018 and Europa Universalis IV. These document-like screens are analyzed using the tools coming from the GeM model, which treats these pages as multi-layered semiotic artifacts. Within this approach, all four layers are covered: the base layer, the layout layer, the rhetorical layer, and the navigation layer. Our analysis proposal tries to pinpoint the semiotic specificities of the different layers and test whether the GeM model needs to be adapted for the purpose of approaching these screens. At the same time, the gameworld environment is viewed as an important mediator between the player and the digital game system. We hope that such integrated approach can be beneficial to both multimodality and video game studies and expand the directions of future research endeavors.

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