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Computer Games and Technical Communication by Ryan M. Moeller, Jennifer deWinter

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Chapter 4Just Playing Around:From Procedural Manuals to In-Game Training

Jennifer deWinter

Computer games have, from their earliest instantiations, been accompanied with manuals that explain “how to play.” It is difficult to overstate the importance of these gameplay procedural guides: computer games are complex algorithms that use goal-oriented design to compel players to do particular tasks in a particular way (see, for example, Galloway, 2004; Bogost, 2007). And these tasks are not necessarily intuitive for players, especially if the game is introducing a new gameplay mechanism, hardware tool, controller configuration, and so on. Kocurek writes about this in her chapter “Rendering Novelty Mundane,” emphasizing the importance of training nonskilled ...

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