Is Nine-Men Morris, in the hands of perfect players, a win for white or for black - or a draw? Can king, rook, and knight always defeat king and two knights in chess? What can Go players learn from economists? What are nimbers, tinies, switches and minies? This book deals with combinatorial games, that is, games not involving chance or hidden information. Their study is at once old and young: though some games, such as chess, have been analyzed for centuries, the first full analysis of a nontrivial combinatorial game (Nim) only appeared in 1902. The first part of this book will be accessible to anyone, regardless of background: it contains introductory expositions, reports of unusual tournaments, and a fascinating article by John H. Conway on the possibly everlasting contest between an angel and a devil. For those who want to delve more deeply, the book also contains combinatorial studies of chess and Go; reports on computer advances such as the solution of Nine-Men Morris and Pentominoes; and theoretical approaches to such problems as games with many players. If you have read and enjoyed Martin Gardner, or if you like to learn and analyze new games, this book is for you.
Barry Atkins discusses in detail questions of narrative and realism in four of the most significant games of the last decade: "Tomb Raider", "Half-Life", "Close Combat" and "SimCity". This is a work for both the student of contemporary culture and those game-players who are interested in how computer games tell their stories.
The definitive sports and social history of the modern Olympic games—by a New York Times best-selling sportswriter. A Boston Globe Best Book of 2016 A Kirkus Reviews Best Nonfiction Book of 2016 For millions of people around the world, the Summer and Winter Games are a joy and a treasure, but how did they develop into a global colossus? How have they been buffeted by—and, in turn, affected by—world events? Why do we care about them so much? From the reinvention of the Games in Athens in 1896 to Rio in 2016, best-selling sportswriter David Goldblatt brilliantly traces their history through national triumphs and tragedies, individual victories and failures. Here is the story of grand Olympic traditions such as winners’ medals, the torch relay, and the eternal flame. Here is the story of popular Olympic events such as gymnastics, the marathon, and alpine skiing (as well as discontinued ones like tug-of-war). And here in all their glory are Olympic icons from Jesse Owens to Nadia Comaneci, Abebe Bikila to Bob Beamon, the Dream Team to Usain Bolt. Hailed in the Wall Street Journal for writing about sports “with the expansive eye of a social and cultural critic,” Goldblatt goes beyond the medal counts to tell how women fought to be included in the Olympics on equal terms, how the wounded of World War II led to the Paralympics, and how the Olympics reflect changing attitudes to race and ethnicity. He explores the tensions between the Games’ amateur ideals and professionalization and commercialism in sports, the pitched battles between cities for the right to host the Games, and their often disappointing economic legacy. And in covering such seminal moments as Jesse Owens and Hitler at Berlin in 1936, the Black Power salute at Mexico City in 1968, the massacre of Israeli athletes at Munich in 1972, and the Miracle on Ice at Lake Placid in 1980, Goldblatt shows how prominently the modern Olympics have highlighted profound domestic and international conflicts. Illuminated with dazzling vignettes from over a century of the Olympics, this stunningly researched and engagingly written history captures the excitement, drama, and kaleidoscopic experience of the Games.
An eleven-year-old boy strangled an elderly woman for the equivalent of five dollars in 2007, then buried her body under a thin layer of sand. He told the police that he needed the money to play online videogames. Just a month later, an eight-year-old Norwegian boy saved his younger sister’s life by threatening an attacking moose and then feigning death when the moose attacked him—skills he said he learned while playing World of Warcraft. As these two instances show, videogames affect the minds, bodies, and lives of millions of gamers, negatively and positively. This book approaches videogame addiction from a cross-disciplinary perspective, bridging the divide between liberal arts academics and clinical researchers. The topic of addiction is examined neutrally, using accepted research in neuroscience, media studies, and developmental psychology.
Classifying, defining, and analyzing team sports and games -- The systemic nature of team sports -- The internal logic of team sports -- Decision-making in team sports -- The player's tactical knowledge -- The analysis of play in team sports -- Performance assessment in team sports -- An introduction to the team-sport assessment procedure and the game performance assessment instrument -- Underlying theories in the teaching-learning process of games and sports -- Constructing team sport knowledge -- Critical issues in the teaching of team sports -- Research and development.