The Pokémon Go Phenomenon

Essays on Public Play in Contested Spaces


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About the Book

Pokémon Go is not just play—the game has had an impact on public spaces, social circles and technology, suggesting new ways of experiencing our world. This collection of new essays explores what Pokémon Go can tell us about how and why we play. Covering a range of topics from mobile hardware and classroom applications to social conflict and urban planning, the contributors approach Pokémon Go from both practical and theoretical angles, anticipating the impact play will have on our digitally augmented world.

About the Author(s)

Jamie Henthorn is an assistant professor of English and writing center director at Catawba College. She writes about and has published on games, fitness, and geek culture from a cultural rhetoric perspective.

Andrew Kulak is a doctoral candidate at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia. He researches and has published on video games and literary theory, online pedagogy, and rhetorical approaches to digital and physical hybridity.

Kristopher Purzycki is a dissertator at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and an editor of Proceedings of the Annual Computers & Writing Conference and OneShot: A Journal of Critical Play and Games.

Stephanie Vie is professor and chair of the department of writing and rhetoric at the University of Central Florida. She has published widely in peer-reviewed journals and edited collections.

Bibliographic Details

Edited by Jamie Henthorn, Andrew Kulak, Kristopher Purzycki and Stephanie Vie

Series Editor Matthew Wilhelm Kapell

Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 235
Bibliographic Info: 13 photos, bibliographies, index
Copyright Date: 2019
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7413-1
eISBN: 978-1-4766-3651-1
Imprint: McFarland
Series: Studies in Gaming

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii
Introduction—Not Just Play: Spaces of Contention
(Jamie Henthorn, Andrew Kulak, Kristopher Purzycki and Stephanie Vie) 1

Part One. How We Play
Gaming Across the Years: Gotta Catch ’Em All Together (Wendi Sierra and Ginger Burgoon) 18
Playing Alone, Together: Pokémon Go, Public Mobility and Locational Privacy (Ryan S. Eanes and Claire Y. van den Broek) 32
The World’s Most Popular Fitness App (Jamie Henthorn) 49
Augmented Reality Design Through Experience Architecture (Jill Anne Morris) 62

Part Two. Why We Play
Rhetorical Augmentation: Public Play, Place and Persuasion in Pokémon Go (Jason Chew Kit Tham and Deondre Smiles) 80
To Be the Very Best … You Gotta Pay: Motivation, Resources and Monetizing Frustration (Eric Murnane) 103
Addiction and the Apocalypse: The Pathology of Pokémon Go (Kristen L. Cole and Alexis Pulos) 119
PokéStories: On Narrative and the Construction of Augmented Reality (Cody Mejeur) 136

Part Three. The Impact of Play
Raid Pass: Constitutive Capital Flows for Augmented Reality (Peter Schaefer and Margaret Schwartz) 156
For Anatopistic Places: Pokémon Go vs. Milwaukee County (Kristopher Purzycki )172
A Tale of Two Screens: Space, Ubiquitous Computing and Locative Gaming (Luiz Adolfo Andrade) 188
Placemaking Across the ­Digital-Physical Divide: ­Location-Based Mobile Gameplay as a Relay in the Emergence of Singularities (William Heili, Chen Xu and Nicholas Jon Crane) 205

About the Contributors 221
Index 225