The Mythic Scope of Journey. A Comparative Assessment Concerning the Spirit at Play and Cybernetic Shamanism
AbstractVideo games yield some of the most immersive virtual experiences of mythos today. They render, conceive and engage in a shared heritage of symbols and images drawn from world stories, mythical tropes, creatures, and environments. Thatgamecompany’s Journey has recently emerged as a concise expression of this impulse to keep myth innovative, and gaming evocative. Working towards unraveling layers of motifs, I will approach Journey as a cybertext and mythic text, drawing on works ranging from philosophical treatises, poetry, sacred narratives and shamanism for comparative analysis. My initial task is to establish the video game as a participatory rendering of the Hero’s Journey, while then breaking the cycle into individual components of motifs, themes and mythemes to parse the discourse of Journey’s exposition. I then argue for Journey’s ongoing engagement with reimagining the gaming experience through a commitment to synergistic immersion in a myth-minded environment.
mythology; hero’s journey; narrative; Journey; motif; simulation; shamanism; video game