Digital Arts and New Media: MFA: Collaboration, Innovation, Social Impact

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dani wright: blood play

A Queer Gothic Approach to Game Design and Grey University

dani wright's "blood play"

blood play is a queer gothic installation that consists of posters with QR codes that link to game fragments and printed zines containing narrative and theory.

Games are unique among media because they allow for—in fact, they almost always depend upon—user interaction. there is potential for games to capitalize on this aspect of their form: by using procedural rhetoric, designers can use games present nuanced theses supported by a designed experience.

Queerness is, fundamentally, radical and disruptive. it poses a threat to the heteronormative systems that we find ourselves stuck within because queerness opposes the idea of heterosexual futurity—queerness rejects the notion of the straight family unit and heterosexual generational logic. 

As a queer gothic game designer therefore, i am interested in designing games and systems that challenge normative assumptions both about games and about gothic media. the work i am presenting sets an example for how we as queer game designers can engage with queer, gothic, and monster theory while working within the queer gothic genre—which i identify as a radical genre that relies on gothic structures to usurp the status quo. 

With blood play and grey university, i blend theory and practice with my project and produce three sets of artifacts: a printed treatise on the poetics of the queer gothic genre. paired with a piece of serialized queer gothic fiction; fragments of a queer gothic game built mostly in twine; and a printed post mortem that critically analyzes my process and my art, evaluating its success.