Ghosts of the Present Past: Spectrality in the Video Game Object


  • Justyna Janik Faculty of Management and Social Communication, Jagiellonian University in Kraków



The aim of the article is to analyse the phenomenon of ghost characters in video games from the perspective of Jacques Derrida’s concept of hauntology, and to use this as the starting point for a hauntological engagement with the video game object’srelationship with its own past. The paper will investigateghostly figuresand their spectral status inside the video game environment, as well as their uncertain hauntological status as both fictional bygone souls and digital in-game objects.On the basis of this analysis of ghostly figures in video game environments, I draw a line between the past of the fictional world and the past of the game world, and examine what happens when they overlap.The dual status of the in-game ghost will thereby serve to metonymically anchor an investi-gation into the duality of the game as a whole, as both fiction and digital materiality, and of the dif-ferent dimensions of the past that exist in between these two levels of the game object.



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