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  • Writer's pictureleodoulton

FAST CARS: MANLY PRINCESS PLAY

There’s a concept in game design called Princess Play.

Named after a common childhood game of pretending to be a princess, it can be described as “a… play structure strategy where a character player is encouraged to develop a character they find entertaining to occupy as a thespian role. During the game they have opportunities to exercise the role in various fictional circumstances. The role is affirmed by the way the [game] reacts to the role.”


I have little to add to the discussion around Princess Play; I just found myself thinking about it as a means of explaining the guy I saw at a traffic light in a very fast car, revving the engine as though at a race.


It is a fantasy we see in various films and places around our culture. The man in a fast car has wealth, power, freedom of the open road (and things like speed limits, ideally).


While it is not necessarily as clearly demarcated from day to day life as a child pretending to be a princess, “me, but kinda James Bond-y [insert fast-car-man of your choice]” feels like it can be well explained as a masculinised form of princess play.


But play nonetheless.


Maybe we ought to make interactive immersive theatre for people with very expensive cars.


A man films using a camera, while stood on the front of an old train.
I don't have any pictures of cars on this site, so here's one of a train from 'Man With A Movie Camera'.

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