Commercial “war” games in a post-1989 setting are popular among a large audience. They offer players an enjoyable gameplay experience, while also referring to contemporary “war” scenarios. As such, they have been studied in several ways, e.g., concerning the “realistic” nature of how they depict warfare. However, little is still known about the way in which the notion of “war” is conceptualized in these games. To fill this gap, this article offers a systematic analysis of the narrative content of 15 popular “war” games set after 1989, as well as their promotional descriptions, as these provide insight into how publishers respond to the interests of players. This is done based on the conceptual framework of conflict/war offered by the Uppsala Conflict Data Program (UCDP).

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Creative Industries
International Journal of Politics, Culture and Society
Department of History

Van den Heede, P., Ribbens, K., & Jansz, J. (2017). Replaying Today’s Wars? A Study of the Conceptualization of Post-1989 Conflict in Digital “War” Games. International Journal of Politics, Culture and Society, 1–22. doi:10.1007/s10767-017-9267-5