Persuasive games

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Persuasive Games: The Expressive Power of Videogames (MIT Press 2007) is a book written by Ian Bogost. Bogost discusses the importance of videogames in influencing players and making arguments. He focuses on the history of rhetoric, arguing that games represent a new form of it. He calls this new form Procedural Rhetoric.


The book is divided into four main categories. The first is Bogost's definition of Procedural Rhetoric, which he uses throughout the remainder of the book. The next section is categorized as Political. This section looks at the political aspects of games, including the political process, the way games frame ideology, and the way games are a democratic process. The third section is on Advertising and discusses the ideas of Advertising Logic, Product Placement, and Advergames (games that are designed as advertisements). The final section is on Learning, and it features sections on Procedural Literacy, Values and Aspirations, Excercise, and the Purpose of Persuasion.

Persuasive Games is also the name of an independent videogame company which focuses on social and political issues, trying to broaden the uses that games currently have. The company was funded by Ian Bogost and Gerard LaFond.