This paper examines the computer game Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone in relation to the novel with the same title. The analysis focuses on the temporal aspects of the works, and differences and similarities regarding both media structure and artistic devices are described. The notion of content space is central and a distinction is made between information content space, action content space, and task content space, which form various kinds of works and structures. Moreover, instead of the traditional pair story and discourse, the four concepts of performed discourse, performed story, omnidiscourse, and omnistory are used to reveal temporal effects and characteristics of the game. Finally, it is concluded that the two works, although different in many ways, play with the same user effects, suspense, curiosity, and surprise, to capture and keep the user’s interest.
During the last few years, a debate took place within the game scholars community. A debate that, it seems, opposed two groups: ludologists and narratologists. Ludologists are supposed to focus on game mechanics and reject any room in the field for analyzing games as narrative, while narratologists argue that games are closely connected to stories. This article aims at showing that this description of the participants is erroneous. What is more, this debate as presented never really took place because it was cluttered with a series of misunderstandings and misconceptions that need to be clarified if we want to seriously discuss the role of narrative in videogames.