Counting Clicks – guest talk at Lincoln Games Research Network by Dr Tom Brock

Counting clicks: Gameplay metrics, power and the body politics of competitive videogames
Dr Tom Brock (Senior Lecturer at Manchester Metropolitan University)

This talk develops a critical approach towards competitive videogaming by considering how gameplay metrics, such as ‘actions-per-minute’ and ‘match-making rank’, extend neoliberal political formations through the surveillance and control of players’ bodily practices. By way of examples from DOTA2, it argues that competitive videogames attune players’ habits and practices to affect economic methodologies and rationales on themselves and others. This is important for critiquing how videogames promote the competitive market as an ideal social formation whilst obscuring its negative psychological and sociological effects.

Tom Brock is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Sociology at Manchester Metropolitan University. His research interests include play, games and social theory. He has authored publications on esports, player skill, failure, player labour and digital games consumption in peer-reviewed journals including, Games and Culture, Journal of Consumer Culture, and Information, Communication and Society. Tom has also published widely on social, political and cultural theory in peer-reviewed journals including, The Sociological Review, Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour and the Journal of Critical Realism.

Date: 3rd April 2019
Room: SLB0006
Time: 14:00 – 15:30


British issue of ToDiGRA journal

A special issue of the journal ToDiGRA (Vol. 3 No. 3, 2018) is out now. It collects the work of the British Digital Games Research Association, and it is co-curated by Dr Paolo Ruffino, from University of Lincoln.

Table of contents:

Paolo Ruffino, Esther MacCallum-Stewart, Garry Crawford

DiGRA Italia conference (Palermo, June 1st)

Dr Paolo Ruffino from the Lincoln Games Research Network has presented his research on GamerGate at the DiGRA Italia 2018 conference: ‘Women, LGBTQI & Allies: videogiochi e identità di genere‘. The conference was hosted by the Sicilia QUEER Fest in Palermo, Italy. The event has gathered game scholars from Italy, and international speakers from Spain and the United Kingdom. It was curated by Dr Marco Benoit Carbone (UCL) and Dr Ilaria Mariani (Milan Polytechnic).

Digra Italia 2018 Palermo


23rd May 2018 – Symposium at Lincoln Games Research Network

The Lincoln Games Research Network  is glad to announce a game studies symposium on Wednesday, 23rd May 2018.

Morning session – 10am until 2pm at IntLab (INB1103)
The morning session starts with a presentation by our guest Dr Mina Vasalou from UCL Knowledge Lab at the Institute of Education. Her talk is titled “A Critical Examination of Feedback in Early Reading Games”. Mina is a designer and human-computer interaction researcher. She has been working as an interactive designer for several years on a variety of projects, spanning from training support, learning games for children, health management tools to web applications. She has a PhD in HCI/Computer-mediated Communication from Imperial College London. She has been working at the School of Management of the University of Bath, and the University of Birmingham’s HCI Centre in Computer Science.

After Mina’s talk, there are three presentations from the Lincoln Games Research Network:

Dr Khaled Bachour (University of Lincoln, School of Computer Science): “Research-led games: tensions between research agenda and artistic vision”
Dr Jussi Holopainen (University of Lincoln, School of Computer Science): “Game Design Research”
Dr Paolo Ruffino (University of Lincoln, School of Film and Media): “Video Games for Earthly Survival: Gaming in the Post-Anthropocene”

Afternoon session – 2:30pm at AAD0W25 Lecture threatre
In the afternoon we have a guest lecture by Prof Alessio Malizia. Alessio is Professor of User Experience Design at University of Hertfordshire and a distinguished speaker of the ACM (the international Association for Computer Machinery). His research and teaching interests focus on Human-Centred Systems, and the design of Ubiquitous Interactive Systems with a special focus on the End-User Development community. The talk is open to students.

For those of you who wish to reach Lincoln on the evening of May 22nd, we are going to have informal drinks and dinner.

Participation at the symposium is free but places are limited. If you are interested, please send an email to

Indie Game Studies workshop at DiGRA 2018 – 24 July 2018

Dr Paolo Ruffino from the Lincoln Games Research Network will coordinate a panel on independent games and independent game development at DiGRA 2018. The panel will take place on July 24th.

Confirmed participants include:

Casey O’Donnell (Associate Professor at Michigan State University, USA)
Celia Pearce (Associate Professor of Game Design at Northeastern University, USA)
Emma Westecott (Associate Professor in Game Design and Director of game:play at OCAD University, Canada)
Jonathan Lessard (Professor of Game Designer at Concordia University, Canada)
Carl Therrien (Professor in Game Studies at Université de Montreal, Canada)
Nadav Lipkin (Assistant Professor of Media, Communication and Technology at La Roche College, Pittsburgh, PA, USA)

Participation is open but places are limited. If you would like to join the workshop as a participant, please send an email  to by Friday 25th May 2018 and include bio, affiliation, and a short statement about your involvement and interest in the study of independent forms of video game development (max 250 words). If you would like to be considered as a speaker, please include a description of your contribution (max 500 words).