Episode 116: For Non-Gamers — Let's Plays

This week, Phoebe Lewis returns for the third entry in our series "For Non-Gamers". She watched through a series of videos on YouTube known as "Let's Plays," in which content creators will complete a video game while providing commentary, often humorous or insightful. In particular, she viewed a number of episodes from "StephenPlays," produced by Stephen Georg and his wife, Mallory. Let's Playing is a relatively young phenomenon, but draws millions of views on platforms like Twitch and YouTube. Is there something particular to video games that encourages ekphrastic work like this? Does commentary substantially change the source material? And how might Let's Plays offer a comfortable point of entry for those like Phoebe who do not consider themselves gamers?

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