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Welcome to the Games Institute

The Games Institute (GI) is a multidisciplinary research centre at the University of Waterloo focused on the study of games, gamification, interactive technologies and immersive environments (AR/VR).

allergies and allegories

kitchen table

places please

 

reading garden

quantum cats

above water

 

rival books

rival books of aster

hustle and flow


First Person Scholar

Weekly critical essays, commentaries, and book reviews on games. 

FPS

GI Jam

A thrice-annual, multi-day event hosted by The Games Institute (GI). Each of the events are open to the public and are designed to appeal to a wide variety of playful people.

Game Jam Fall 2016 logo
 

Game Dev Club

controller image

Every Tuesday and Thursday from 6pm-9pm at the GI.

This is your opportunity to meet and collaborate with local game developers in a casual atmosphere.

Show off your latest projects, receive valuable play-testing feedback from like-minded peers, learn new tools and techniques, and network with potential collaborators.

 
 

The future of games will rely on new technologies and new ways of interacting with those technologies, but it will also rely heavily on psychological and sociological understandings of what we do when we play, on stories and narratives that reach far beyond what today’s games offer, and on extensive work in a wide range of fields, from health to education, into how games can guide us, change us, and help us.

 

- Dr. Neil Randall, Director of the Games Institute

  1. Dec. 12, 2018Lennart Nacke on the "Keeping the Human in Artificial Intelligence" panel

    Lennart Nacke, faculty member of the Games Institute and director of the HCI Games Group, spoke on a panel, entitled "Keeping the Human in Artificial Intelligence", on December 3 at the Kitchener Public Library.

  2. Dec. 4, 2018Mark Hancock receives the 10-Year Impact Award at ISS

    Mark Hancock, Associate Director of the Games Institute and Director of the UW Touchlab, was honoured with the 10-Year Impact Award on Tuesday, Nov. 27 at the ACM International Conference on Interactive Surfaces and Spaces (ISS) in Tokyo.

  3. Nov. 28, 2018Elise Vist at the Fan Studies Network North America (FSNNA) Conference

    Elise Vist presented a paper at the Fan Studies Network North America (FSNNA) 2018 Conference at DePaul University in Chicago, October 25-27, 2018. Vist is an English PhD candidate studying fans, immersion, and queerness at the Games Institute, as well as the producer for First Person Podcast.

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  1. Dec. 10, 2018Multidisciplinary Panel: Horizon Zero DawnMultidisciplinary Panel: Horizon Zero Dawn

  2. Dec. 7, 2018Spotlight on Alexandra Orlando's YouTube channel

    Alexandra Orlando, an alum of the Games Institute and a former Editor in Chief for First Person Scholar, maintains a YouTube channel for academically-oriented games criticism. When she's not working on video essays, she works as freelance writer.

  3. Nov. 15, 2018Introducing the GI to Engineering Exchange Students from MexicoTaheera introducing the GEAR group to the collaboration space

    How can games guide us, change us, and help us?

    This was the question that left me speechless, simply because I wasn’t sure where to begin or even how to fully answer it. The question was the first of many posed by an eager group of Mexican exchange students visiting the GI.

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Participate in Our Research

Subscribe to our Research Participants Mailing List to hear about opportunities to be a study participant in the work done by The Games Institute researchers!


Meet our people

Michael Barnett Cowan

Michael Barnett-Cowan

Associate Professor, Department of Kinesiology

Dr. Michael Barnett-Cowan is an Associate Professor for the Kinesiology Department, Faculty of Applied Health Sciences, at the University of Waterloo.

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