1st Edition

Comics and Videogames From Hybrid Medialities to Transmedia Expansions

Edited By Andreas Rauscher, Daniel Stein, Jan-Noël Thon Copyright 2021
    278 Pages
    by Routledge

    278 Pages
    by Routledge

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    This book offers the first comprehensive study of the many interfaces shaping the relationship between comics and videogames. It combines in-depth conceptual reflection with a rich selection of paradigmatic case studies from contemporary media culture.

    The editors have gathered a distinguished group of international scholars working at the interstices of comics studies and game studies to explore two interrelated areas of inquiry: The first part of the book focuses on hybrid medialities and experimental aesthetics "between" comics and videogames; the second part zooms in on how comics and videogames function as transmedia expansions within an increasingly convergent and participatory media culture. The individual chapters address synergies and intersections between comics and videogames via a diverse set of case studies ranging from independent and experimental projects via popular franchises from the corporate worlds of DC and Marvel to the more playful forms of media mix prominent in Japan.

    Offering an innovative intervention into a number of salient issues in current media culture, Comics and Videogames will be of interest to scholars and students of comics studies, game studies, popular culture studies, transmedia studies, and visual culture studies.


    1. Introduction: Comics and videogames

    Andreas Rauscher, Daniel Stein, and Jan-Noël Thon

    Part I: Hybrid medialities

    2. Of Pac-Men and Star Raiders: Early mutual representations between comics and videogames (1981–1983)

    Nicolas Labarre

    3. Interfacing comics and games: A socio-affective multimodal approach

    Carman Ng

    4. Game comics: Theory and design

    Daniel Merlin Goodbrey

    5. Game-comics and comic-games: Against the concept of hybrids

    Hans-Joachim Backe

    6. Building stories: The interplay of comics and games in Chris Ware’s works

    Nina Eckhoff-Heindl

    7. Homestuck as a game: A webcomic between playful participation, digital technostalgia, and irritating inventory systems

    Tim Glaser

    8. Metal Gear Solid and its comic adaptations

    Claudius Stemmler

    Part II: Transmedia expansions

    9. Many Spider-Men are better than one: Referencing as narrative strategy

    Dominik Mieth

    10. The not-so Fantastic Four franchise: A critical history of the comic, the films, and the Disney/Fox merger

    Robert Alan Brookey and Nan Zhang

    11. The road to Arkham Asylum: Batman: Dark Tomorrow and transitional transmedia

    James Fleury

    12. When rules collide: Definitional strategies for superheroes across comic books and games

    William Uricchio

    13. The manifestations of game characters in a media mix strategy

    Joleen Blom

    14. Creating Lara Croft: The meaning of the comic books for the Tomb Raider franchise

    Josefa Much

    15. Beyond immersion: Gin Tama and palimpsestuous reception

    Susana Tosca





    Andreas Rauscher is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Media Studies at the University of Siegen, Germany. He is the author of Das Phänomen Star Trek [The Star Trek Phenomenon] (2003), Spielerische Fiktionen: Transmediale Genrekonzepte in Videospielen [Ludic Fictions: Transmedial Genre Concepts in Videogames] (2012), and Star Wars: 100 Seiten [Star Wars: 100 Pages] (2019).

    Daniel Stein is Professor of North American Literary and Cultural Studies at the University of Siegen, Germany. He is the author of Music Is My Life: Louis Armstrong, Autobiography, and American Jazz (2012), co-editor of From Comic Strips to Graphic Novels (2013/²2015), and one of the editors of Anglia: Journal of English Philology.

    Jan-Noël Thon is Professor of Media Studies at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Guest Professor of Media Studies at the University of Cologne, Germany, and Professorial Fellow at the University for the Creative Arts, UK. He has published widely in comics studies, game studies, and media studies.