Making Sense in Ludic Worlds. The Idealization of Immersive Postures in Movies and Video Games


In the ongoing efforts to theorize the interactive experience proposed by video games, it is common to make a distinction between fictional elements and the gameplay in itself. E. Adams distinguished between tactical, strategic and fictional immersions. In Half-Real, J. Juul has notoriously declared that video games encompass two things: fictional worlds and real rules. Many approaches stress the distinct nature of the immersive experience in games on account of their participatory nature. By contrast, M. Csikszentmihalyi’s model of flow – a common foundation to discuss immersion in sports and games – has been applied without any modifications to art appreciation, an “activity” that many would argue doesn’t propose clear goals and retroactions. Is there any common ground between games and fictional forms that can help us understand the cultural magnitude achieved by their synthesis through the video game medium? Building on current doctoral research and on Jean-Marie Schaeffer’s effort to theorize our involvement with digital worlds as a continuation of the fictional immersion experienced in other media, this contribution seeks to evaluate the relevance of a general framework to discuss immersion. The optimization of experience in both video games and fiction films, and the various strategies that seek to shape an ideal immersive posture for us