Indie Game: The Movie: The Paper – Documentary Films and the Subfield of Independent Games

Jacevic Milan
2018 DiGRA '18 - Proceedings of the 2018 DiGRA International Conference: The Game is the Message

This paper examines documentary films about independent games and game developers, focusing on their rhetorical and ideological potential with regards to the subfield of independent digital games and the figures and works operating therein. I employ the conceptual framework developed by Bourdieu and analyze the documentary films using critical discourse analysis method of Fairclough, moving from micro-level descriptions of stylistic elements of the documentary films towards their macro-level discursive and sociocultural contextualizations. While all the films analyzed as part of the corpus exhibit stylistic similarities and predominantly positively highlight the practice of independent game development, they also feature stylistic, ideological and rhetorical differences which could be explained by taking into account the different primary focus of each of the films, the contrasting socio-cultural factors related to their chosen subject matter, as well as the time of their release and the state of the corresponding independent games scene at the time.


Indie Game Studies Year Eleven

Parker Felan
2014 DiGRA '13 - Proceedings of the 2013 DiGRA International Conference: DeFragging Game Studies

As independent or “indie” games become more visible and prominent in the digital game industry and in gaming culture, the idea of independence becomes increasingly difficult to pin down. This short paper provides a starting point for scholars interested in studying indie games. Beginning with a mission statement that addresses some of the challenges and opportunities of indie game studies, the paper surveys eleven years of research on the history, theory, political economy, and socio-cultural aspects of indie games and highlights tensions or gaps. The paper concludes by identifying productive avenues for future inquiry, arguing that indie games should be more fully integrated into game studies as a field.