270RPM doesn’t make the cut

“Autoethnography “-Understanding it as a research practise that focuses on self reflection, the way in which a researcher, through personal experiences, understands and makes meaning, this supports Ellis’s reading ‘to describe and systematically analyze (graphy) personal experience (auto) in order to understand cultural experience.’ Similar to Bronislaw Malinowski, his field journals ultimately experience and document the honesty in a public domain that others may otherwise not see. In DIGC330 week 2, I viewed a Documentary named State of Play’ set during the transition between Star Craft and Star Craft 2.

Screen Shot 2016-08-09 at 4.06.24 pm

Here’s a documentation of my experience:

  • Set in South Korea- it opened with a camera pan of the city. All the way through this documentary the weather was grey and horrid. Not too much excitement happening weather wise for any of the contestants. Is this why they were so attached to playing StarCraft?
  • It was interesting to see that all the gamers were male. I hate to be one to talk about gender, but this documentary focused on portraying the gamers as very masculine figure within North Korean culture. The inclusion of fan girls added to this gender dynamic. (But really, why were they fan girling over esports? It just didn’t make sense)
  • A coherent universal story between parents and son in this documentary could be easily followed. The question of what are you doing with your life? Is this really what you want to be doing with your life? Were questions that are even asked in our families. It was nice to have a culture entirely different from our own, that somewhat became similar.
  • Nice to see what happens where a team isn’t always winning, the documentary became another thing entirely. Not just following the player’s success but also seeing them at their lowest when they weren’t winning, as well as letting people see the real him was a very important sense of victory. When the esports players compared this to football the concepts of winning, losing, rivalry and patience all became universally understood. Even though someone like me, who hasn’t seen or even heard of Esports, began to understand how important playing and training was for the StarCraft players. This made it a lot easier to follow.
  • Korean food was very apparent as well as portraying a strong sense of culture- which also made me extremely hungry.
  • As discussed in my live tweeting during watching the documentary. I noted that I was interested in the way gamers brains worked differently to ours, its like they use a completely different part of their brain. For instance, 270 RPM was slow in the competition!!! That’s physically impossible for me to even comprehend.
  • The way generations respond to technology based on their culture was also worth exploring more in-depth. A lot of the more traditional/reserved generations, believed gaming is a waste of time and just didn’t understand the significance in participating in Esports. Whereas for the gamers it was their life and their dream.


  1. I really enjoyed your post and experience about “State of Play”, a lot of different aspects are pointed out and link to your own experience. It is clear and easy to read from the start with a short summary about autoethnography, and brings the readers to understand what is going to be.

    I like the experience you have by looking at the video setting of the documentary that not many other classmates do. The observation of the gamers is deep and links to different aspects, such as family and society. I like the thing that the comparison of E-sport and normal sport you made correspond the experience you might not have about E-sport.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hey thanks for your post, I also did an auto-ethnographic response to ‘State of Play’ and found many similar key points but there were a couple you pointed out which I hadn’t taken into account.

    I definitely agree the whole idea of 270 RPM doesn’t cut it is incredible, I was reading many pro gamers are working at 500-600 RPM which is hard to comprehend. I don’t think I could click that fast let alone usefully in the context of a game.
    Some of the points you made that stood out to me were the apparent gender divide and the contrast between how each generation responded to gaming as a career. I didn’t take much note of it all in my response but it was incredible how every single gamer was male and there were these fan girls completely in love with some of the gamers like Lee Jae-Dong. I think in the way that popular physical sports are only starting to properly recognise female athletes, e-Sports are going through an early sort of genesis phase (which is bad). Also really enjoyed your point on the disparity between how young and old generations think of gaming.


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