Dissertation Proposal

November 2, 2009

Today was the-quasi deadline where us students are supposed to submit a dissertation proposal form, though not assessed or marked in any way (Though I wasn’t willing to test the theory I could wait until tomorrows dissertation support session, failing any marked element of the third year will fail the whole year. Eep.) it serves as a way of making the student put pen to paper or wordythinks to keyboard and put down 200-300 words about what the student will be doing for the dissertation.

Curious? Read on:


This dissertation will compare the progression of two computer/video game genres – first person shooters & adventure games – with the aim of comprehending the reasons for the decline of computer adventure games and the current dominance of the first person shooter genre.

In order to understand how the above has become commonplace, the dissertation will examine the play habits of game players, typical design decisions relating to these two variants of game (Via case studies) and the perception of what a genre is in the games industry as well as the business considerations that have contributed to the current comparative state of adventure games and first person shooters.

The question of what a game actually is, along with the public perception of what games are (That videogames are often seen as a pastime for children*) will also be considered, as that plays into the larger comparison between the genres.

Each of the genres will be examined both in terms of how they have progressed over time by themselves in addition to a comparison of the two genres against each other.

*Despite the existence of an 18+ age rating and considerable media attention on violent games with ‘mature’ themes.



1. Game Design and Development, Fundamentals of Game Design, Andrew Rollings & Ernest Adams

2. Ultimate Game Design, Building Virtual Worlds, Tom Meigs

3. Chris Crawford on Game Design

4. Introduction to Level Design for PC Games – Andy Clayton

5. Game Design (Second Edition, check for a later edition) – Bob Bates

6. The ultimate history of videogames – Stephen L Kent

7. Andrew Rollings & Ernest Adams on Game Design

8. Videogames, James Newman

9. Game Design Theory & Practice, Richard Rouse III

10. Rules of Play, Game Design Fundamentals, Katie Salen & Eric Zimmerman

11. First Person: New Media as Story, Performance and Game, Edited by Noah Wardrip-Fruin and Pat Harrigan