Bogost, Ian (2007) Persuasive Games

Videogames persuade players through procedural rhetoric.  The procedures of rules-based interaction in games functions as a new form of rhetoric that influences players’ opinions and perceptions.  Bogost examines 3 key areas videogames are used to influence opinion: politics, advertising,and education.

Chapter 7 – Advergames

Bogost understands advergames as any game created specifically to influence players’ opinions about the claims of a product or service.  He maintains that “advergames are simulations of products and services” (200) and that using games to simulate experiences with products creates “opportunities for consumers to interrogate those products as potential needs and wants” (205). While this would have true in 2007, the most popular advergames have since evolved into sophisticated play spaces that may not directly involve the advertised product at all.  Instead this “second generation” of advergames employ signs and symbols to influence players’ brand preferences through association.

Later Bogost again explains that “advergames function best at the intersection of demonstrative advertising and embodied experience through procedural representation of products and services” (222).


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