Extra Lives

953 words 4 pages
The Rhetoric of Tom Bissell’s
“Extra lives: Why Video Games Matter” Tom Bissell’s, a teacher at Portland State University, main idea was to indicate to his audience why video games matter to him by using various argumentative appeals. One must ask themselves, can this author be worthy of respect? Can he give his readers enough facts to get his argument across? Will he try to give us a soft story to buy his way into in his argument? Throughout most of Bissell’s book, he uses the logical appeal by describing, in great detail, Fallout 3. Sadly he lacks the Emotional appeal to complete this argument and he loses my credibility throughout the article. In Bissell’s argument, he cites “Fallout 3 was going to be fucking awesome” (354).
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This may shock many readers while reading the article and possibly pop the question, “Did he really miss the election to play a game that he could have played another time? Is Fallout 3 that significant?” When I began reading this article, I quickly lost creditability for this man, Bissell. Depending on the reader’s morals, this can vary. On the second page of his article, he deliberately states “For several weeks, Bethesda Softworks, Fallout 3’s developer, had been posting online a series of promotional gameplay videos, which I had been watching and rewatching[sic] with fetish-porn avidity” (350). Isn’t this man supposed to be convincing us about why games matter and not his personal life? This could have been left out along with another statement. Bissell states, “If given the choice, I always opt for a woman, for whatever reason” (356). Is this guy a pervert that chooses a girl character to play to be aroused? Bissell’s creditability is defiantly questionable. Overall Bissell isn’t successful in his argument due to the loss of creditability. He did give many logical reasons why Fallout 3 is an amazing game by stating many facts along with a couple, yet not to sentimental, emotional appeals. Visualizing the game play, designs the readers to have a desire to play it and see what the game is like. Bissell was also


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