i would like to start this response by saying that these series of essay by Alexander Galloway is very technical and a bit difficult to follow. Nevertheless, I do find them enjoyably complex and informative. One of the essays I found very interesting was chapter 2 ‘ Origins of the first person shooter.’ In this chapter, Galloway connects two medias, film and video games, where each borrows and teaches the other. Galloways gets my attention as a reader, when he begins analysing classic movies and the use of the ‘gaze.’ He states that there are four, “The audience’s look, the camera’s look, the intradiegetic look between characters and the fourth look – the look at the viewer by an onscreen character.” (galloway 40)
The subjective shot, Galloway states, is one which allows the viewer to feel a sense of alienation, detachment and fear. In games this becomes a way in which the gamer can get a sense of motion and intuition- key features of any game. The eye of the camera, Galloway notes, in movies most commonly given to aliens and monsters (galloway, 50) and so the eye of the camera constitutes a predatory gaze. This gives and interesting perspective to the use of ‘the subjective point of view’ used in video games. As a person who like games suck as ‘Call of duty’ or ‘Red faction’ where the camera depicts your character mostly shooting, it offers this sense of the ‘other’ or the monstrous horror of killing another somewhat more real. Similar to movies where the camera shifts back and forth from and into the subjective, first player shooters in a game mostly tend stay in that position, making the thrill of killing or other horrors less distant and more real. Some argue that this lessening of distance between the player and the game, makes it more viable for young gamers to think that this is completely normal. Yet Galloway argues that first player shooter games seem to be made the scapegoat, as there are games which do not use the medium of ‘subjective point of view’ and are more or equally as violent.