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Immersed in a good game: why you shouldn’t feel guilty about playing The Legend of Zelda and other digital games

Wednesday 13 January 2021, 1.45PM

Speaker(s): Professor Paul Cairns

Whether it’s the blood drenched streets of Grand Theft Auto or collecting cats in Neko Atsume – a mobile phone game downloaded ten million times – exploring the diverse cognitive experiences of playing games has become a mission for Professor Paul Cairns. The former pure mathematician – ‘my career took a sideways turn’ – now leads a remarkable team of young researchers at the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Intelligent Games and Game Intelligence (IGGI), getting inside the minds of the more than two billion gamers around the world.

Professor Cairns sees the immersive experience of playing games as going beyond the simple pleasure of being lost in a good book, to where players confront the challenge and uncertainty games throw at them to lead to fulfilling and enduring experiences. He will show how IGGI’s smart graduates and postgraduates – it will produce more than a hundred of the latter – are seen as critical to the continuing success of a creative industry that adds close to £6bn to the UK economy and whose products are enriching lives around the world.

Part of YorkTalks, a day of inspirational short talks about the world-leading research happening at York.

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Location: Online