Second Hand Gaming : experiencing the diegesis through a non-gamic medium.

One aspect of the video game medium that has recently and steadily popularized is the ability for such a medium to be enjoyed at more than a first hand experience. In the past, most people have experienced video games through watching others play whether they be strangers or friends by physically being close to said person. However, by ways of modern internet advances, this second hand method of consuming video games has slowly gained a following. Currently gaming as a genre on YouTube is extremely populated with influential personnel and view counts for the gaming genre accounts for a large percentage of total views. Along with recorded videos, viewership for the live streaming of video games also has increased. Namely,, the premier website for video game streams, currently boasts over 200,000 concurrent viewers. It is undeniable that this aspect of video games has invaded our culture. Even the iconic cartoon show, “South Park”, released an episode concerning this growth.

It’s evident that even though live streams and “let’s plays” are not “gamic” in the sense that play is not being done, they do introduce a sometimes unusual mixture of diegetic and non-diegetic material. Depending on the producer, some live streams and videos will contain non-diegetic operator acts (stream overlays, commentary, donation/subscription popups) or they could boast raw diegetic footage however influenced by diegetic operator acts. Whatever you may think of the act of watching others play video games (it is a very polarizing ideal), one cannot deny the influence it has on modern culture. The exposure of video games through other medium has grown tremendously in the last decade and will continue to grow. Who knows what will come next after live¬†streams.

With this in mind, I invite anyone reading this to check out my stream here. I mainly stream Dota 2 which is a newly released Valve game based off of Dota 1 which was a community made mod based on the Warcraft III engine. As communication is encouraged for our playing of World of Warcraft, I will also be streaming the entirety of my time on World of Warcraft.

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2 Responses to Second Hand Gaming : experiencing the diegesis through a non-gamic medium.

  1. cso9 says:

    Hah! I love how you included South Park’s take on it, as it demonstrates your idea so well!
    Even funnier, too, how they mentioned watching elderly people playing Call of Duty, because I actually have seen a YouTube video of older folk playing Grand Theft Auto for the first time. This completely demonstrates your point because although I’ve heard of Grand Theft Auto, I’ve never been personally exposed to it before, and therefore was exposed to it through a different medium — the Web.

    It also makes me reflective on how one can even access video game tutorials via YouTube. Not going to lie, and don’t judge me, but I have had to utilize tutorials/cheats for some games (i.e. for The Water Temple in Ocarina of Time, boss stage in Buffy the Vampire Slayer on Xbox, even for the Sims, because who wouldn’t want to make a million dollars in a minute). The medium for accessing the tutorials has changed over the years from the actual guide books you could purchase, gaming databases online/Yahoo answers, to walk-through videos & live streaming.
    Pondering that progression, I, too, wonder what will be next.


  2. I am thrilled to hear you’re streaming your WoW game. Hopefully this encourages people to chat all the more!


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