This category contains 19 posts


Hi everyone! My name is Samantha, but I prefer Sam. I’m majoring in English and I’m a senior at UB- I’m planning to finish up this summer. This class interested me because it seems like I’m surrounded by videogamers- my older brother plays, my younger brother plays, and my boyfriend plays. They used to be diehard Call of Duty/ Modern Warfare gamers.

I, on the other hand, have not played video games in quite a while. I used to play a lot when I was younger. I played Gameboy, Sega, N64, and when the Wii came out, I played that for a while too. A few years back I used to have Guitar Hero and Mario Cart parties with my friends and family and I definitely think that video games can unite us and make us happier. It’s hard now, though, with work and school and everything else going on in life. I’m hoping that this class will help me to get back in touch with my fun/gamer side. I look forward to getting to know everyone better and learning a ton about video games!


Hi Everybody

Hey all,

I’m hoping I got this right and it goes into introductions.  My name is Eric Culver.  I’m from New Paltz, New York, if some of you don’t know where that is the best way to describe where the location is that it’s between NYC and Albany.  At the moment I’m an English major and a Coaching minor.  I’m working on getting my certificates in journalism and coaching.  Here at UB I’m on the Men’s Swim Team, swimming has been a huge part in my life and has taken a great toll as well.
My experiences with video games isn’t too big.  I use to be a huge gamer when I was younger, but as swimming started to consume my life so did school work.  So i decided to sell all of my game systems.  Sad I know.  One of my favorite video games growing up was Crash Bandicoot on the PS1 and also Super Smash Bros on the N64.  Good times.
Hope to get to know you all soon!  Cheers.


Whats Up!

Hello digital class,

My name is Andy Probst and I just recently switched over to an English major this past semester. Currently bombarding myself with English courses as I am in my junior year and intend to graduate on time! I’ve never taken an online course before or even blogged for that matter so this should be a fun and exiting experience.

I don’t play video games as much as I used to; I’d much rather be outside on my board or behind my boat. Even in the winter while everybody is complaining about that horrible white stuff that falls from the sky so frequently in Buffalo, I’m clicking into my skis and sending it off jumps at Holiday Valley. But back in the day, Gameboy and Sega Dreamcast epitomized my life. If you challenge me to a battle in Rush 2049, prepare to have your butt spanked! (metaphorically speaking). I remember sneaking my gameboy into elementary school equipped with the latest and greatest Pokemon Silver and trading my Graveler to my buddies so they could evolve into Golem (still do not know why they implemented that rule, it was such a pain). I look forward to delving deeper into the world of video games with all of you!

Hi everyone,

My name is Alex Galaviz and I am a senior at UB, majoring in English. I hail from Los Angeles, CA and I am home for the summer so here I am in an online course for summer. I look forward to diving into this class, learning as much as possible, and contributing whatever I can.

My first encounter with video games was a regular, original, beautiful, Nintendo. Through the years my game play has evolved with the medium. Such as Super NES, Genesis, 32X, Game cube, Dreamcast, Playstation, you name it I still own it all the way to the current xbox 360. I play a variety of games from Starcraft II to Black Ops but my all time favorite would have to be Zombies ate my neighbors for Genesis; AWESOME!


Hi, my name is Brad Whipple and I am a senior media study major at UB.  Currently I am finishing up my degree this summer, as well as preparing to move to New Hampshire to start a new job producing media for a freestyle ski academy.  For me, video games have always had a large influence on my life, where one of my earliest memories was playing Lion King on my Sega.  From there I continued gaming, moving from Gameboy to Gamecube and eventually the series of Playstations. Recently, I have mostly engaged in online multiplayer sports and first person shooter games (Madden, Call of Duty, etc.).  While this is my first time taking an online course, I am excited to learn more and discuss further the topic of video games and their impacts in this course.


Hello. I’m Emma Pezzimenti. I’m an intended English major in the Advanced Honors program. I am technically a junior but my number of credits is somewhat off due to transferring from McGill University in Canada. I’m a dual citizen though I was born and raised here in Buffalo. I intend to involve myself in Media Studies some how, whether it be through a double major, doing the game certificate in the MS department, or at least taking a number of classes in the department. I’m an avid gamer (PC specifically) and also a big music listener (I like unusual and uncanny music that is loud, minimalist, or experimental, etc.) and am interested in the way media influences human thought and behavior. I’m particularly interested in the way media interacts with us as gendered, sexed, sexual and racialized subjects. I am transgender and have an interest in queer and gender theory and I want to fuse the study of that with the study of media in my current and future work.

As a final note, some games I’ve played recently or am playing: League of Legends, Dark Souls, Bioshock Infinite, Dishonored and FarCry 3.


Howdy, this is Chase Conatser. I’m a senior studying English and Communication Design. I’m not a gamer, but I find video games to be one of culture’s most fascinating forms of meaning making. The genera’s exciting mediation between literary and experiential narrative offers a completely unique experience within art. Video games are undeniable markers of human innovation that utilize and invent now technologies to imagine the margins of our reality. These windows seem to reflect the fluid use of self in post modern art and theory. I’m excited to hear the various takes on the components that go into this medium and to better my understanding their societal implications.

good morning,

Bonjour!  My name is Emma Janicki and I’m a junior English major at UB, thinking about picking up a French minor.  I’m a transfer student from Geneseo and prior to that I was a transfer student from Binghamton.  I recently started working at the Buffalo Museum of Science and moved into an apartment near Allentown.  I always find writing an introduction to be a bit strange, but I used to have a blog with one of my friends so here’s the link for a bit more on a highly-constructed version of my life (I’m the brunette): http://emandtea.blogspot.com/.  Despite running that blog for about three months, I am not much of a technology-internet-gaming (to categorize all of that together) person.  I am in English major, so reading is one of my top loves.  I enjoy spending a lot of time outdoors, talking creepily to dogs I pass on the street, and clothing.  I have a sewing machine from the 1970’s, on which my cactus-world currently resides, that I need to take more advantage of.  I chose to take this class because I’m studying abroad in England for three weeks this summer (taking a Shakespeare course at King’s College) and needed more credits for financial aid.  I’m not really into video games and when I do play, I tend to forget where I am or what I’m looking at (much to the annoyance of everybody else more skilled than me).  Despite my qualms with actually playing video games, I’m looking forward to this course being challenging, simply because I know so little about the topic.   

And? ….

Hello my name is Dio Mazurek and I am an Electrical Engineering Major at UB and about to start my final year this fall.  When I decided to take this general education class over the summer I was worried about the possible limited selection available and what that might force me to take considering the wide variety available throughout the regular semester.  To my surprise there were still some great classes available for the semester and being a veteran gamer the choice was simple.

My gaming starts with my grandparents Atari console which i remember playing hours of river raid, outlaws, barnstorming, Indiana jones and berserk.  I have owned almost all of the consoles released since except for N64, Dreamcast, and Sega CD.  Video games used to be a way to kill some time and enjoy spending more time with the characters that I loved, but now with so much modern media streaming from every device, hundreds of channels and thousands of movies released every year i find myself siding with games.  They are a more honest media with clear-cut goals and objectives laid out in a way that there is always something that you can brag about to the person next to you even if it is only that you had the fewest deaths, the most assists, or finally passed the level.  I do love video games and would be greatly saddened by their demise but as i get older i have noticed that i tend to buy cheap thrills games (Like COD multiplayer)more than the long adventure games.  This is mostly due to being a working adult that is also attending school, I do not have time to immerse myself in so many of these games as i once had. 

I am eager to experience this class and learning more about the universe of gaming.

About your prof, Alex Reid

I appreciate reading all your introductions. It’s good to get to know something about the people you’re taking a class with. People will often say that an online class can be a little impersonal. And I’m sure it can, but so can a lecture hall. Neither have to be that way. Like many conventional English classes, this one will succeed or fail upon our ability to engage in conversation with one another, so I hope that you will get involved.

As you already know, I am a professor in the English department at UB. I’ve been here for 4 years, but I taught at a few other places before coming here: Georgia Tech, Penn State, and SUNY Cortland. I am a rhetorician, which means I don’t really study literature. I suppose you could say that rhetoric is the philosophical/humanistic study of communication. My particular area of study is digital rhetoric, which means I investigate the role of digital media and technology in communication. You can check out my blog if you want to know more about that. I am also the director of the university’s first-year writing program. With those heavy administrative duties, I don’t have the opportunity to teach undergraduates during the regular academic year, so I am glad to have this chance to work with you during the summer.

Outside of work, I’m a fairly ordinary suburban dad, married with two kids and a dog. I spend a good part of my summer driving my son (Jameson, 12) and daughter (Mirabel, 13) to soccer practices, games, and tournaments (because of this last one, I may not always respond to emails quickly on the weekends). Much of my experience with video games comes through my kids. We have an Xbox. The main games we have recently been playing (last year or so) are Assassin’s Creed, Bioshock Infinite, Defiance, Halo, Mass Effect, and FIFA Soccer. My kids are also very avid Minecraft players. I just set up a Minecraft server for them last week. Of course, I should also count iPhone games: Angry Birds (of course), JetPack, Scribblenauts, and Water seem to be the current favorites in my house.

I’m in my 40s, so I grew up with the early Atari games: Pong, Space Invaders, Adventure, etc. I played Pac Man, Pole Position, Frogger, Joust, and all those in arcades and smoky bowling alleys. I didn’t pay much attention to video games in the late 80s or early 90s but then became interested in PC gaming: Wolfenstein, Doom, Civilization, Bauldur’s Gate. As I already said, in the last 10 years it’s been mostly in relation to our kids. We had a Playstation 2, a Wii, and Nintendo DS for a while so we went through many of the typical games: Pokemon, Mario Brothers, etc. I’d have to say my favorite games I’ve played in the last couple years are Skyrim, Dishonored, and Assassin’s Creed, though I also like playing FIFA Soccer.