chapter  3
19 Pages

Marketing of Video Games: Peter Zackariasson and Timothy L. Wilson


Social life is endued with supra-biological forms, in the shape of play, which enhance its value. It is through this playing that society expresses its interpretation of life and of the world. By this we do not mean that play turns into culture, rather that in its earliest phases culture has the play-character, that it proceeds in the shape and the mood of play. (Huizinga 1950/1938, 46)

In his seminal text from the early twentieth century the philologist Johan Huizinga suggested that man is homo ludens-Man the Player-and society as we know it was formed through playing. This suggestion has implications for how we create an understanding of society, as well as play and playing. Not as a biological phenomenon that should be explained, but as a cultural phenomenon that explains us.1 Our societies are still dominated by play, both in the metaphorical sense and a literal sense, i.e. playing on the stock exchange market, playing at the offi ce or even playing the “game” of family life. Regarding the latter, playing in the literal sense, the play phenomenon extraordinaire today is, without any doubts, video games.