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The Brainy Gamer: The diminished journey

BG writes:

''The profound influence of the Monomyth, the Hero's Journey, on narrative video games is easily demonstrated. When my students first encounter Joseph Campbell's The Hero with a Thousand Faces, they make the leap to video games with barely a nudge from me, listing all the games they've played that conform to Campbell's familiar paradigm: the call to adventure; the road of trials; achieving the goal (resulting in self-knowledge); returning home; and bestowing the boons, the gifts, of his journey on his fellow men (and women, presumably, though Campbell notoriously ignores them in most of his work).

While Campbell's star may have fallen among modern mythology scholars, I continue to find his work compelling because it never fails to capture the imagination of students encountering it for the first time. Helping students work their way through the stages of the Monomyth and witnessing the lightning bolt discoveries and inevitable connections to familiar fairy tales, games, films, and books they know can be an exhilarating experience. They suddenly discover a broader context they never knew existed, and this encounter often compels them to consider cultural or religious differences more openly and non-judgmentally.''

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