This article, as it indicates in its title, is about community of play and its global playground. So what is community? As indicated in the article, community is, defined by German sociologist Ferdinand Tonnies, 「an association of individuals with a collective will that is enacted through individual effort. Communities take varying forms, from religious sects to neighborhoods, and are characterized by affiliations around a group identity that includes shared customs, folkways, and social mores. Typically, the will of individuals within a community is, to a certain extent, subjugated to the greater good.」
Nonetheless, this article is a little bit too old for today, and thus, I put my interest in how writer sees the future development of community of play. It thus generates a lot of problems such as how communities will be like, how communities will be formed and maintained (a question mentioned in the article), how communities can be extended, and how communities differ from each other today.
The form of communities seem natural, gathering a lot of people online with same or similar interest, but what I found interesting is how such kind of communities should be maintained, more specifically, how communities of play relate to interaction culture. Obviously, from 3500 BCE to the twenty first century, also the media for multiplayer games have been changing fundamentally, the core of multiplayer has not changed much. As what author said in the article, 「from their first evidence, such as the Egyptian Senet, the Mesopotamian Ur, and the ancient Mrican game of mancala, to the traditional Chinese games of Go and Mah Jongg, to chess, whose multicultural odyssey spanned India and the Middle East to become a European perennial (Yalom 2004), games were predominately multiplayer.」
For me it is a little bit kind of unfamiliar because usually I play only single player games but multiplayer games (I am the odd guy), but I do have experience on playing multiplayer games with my friends. I remember when I played Contra with my friends on Family Computer (Nintendo), 1996, a lot of kids nearby would join us one by one to challenge each other to see who the best was at that time. To me it is a kind of community that formed naturally without any intentional efforts, but I am still confused about the concept of 「maintain the community」 from this article. I was trying to connect such experience to what the article has said. But apparently my effort was in vain. For me it is kind of hard to connect two scenarios. I am also wondering if it is a kind of community of play.