Over the three decade long history of sports videogame development, design conventions have lead to the emergence of a new sports game genre: the televisual sports videogames. These games, which usually simulate major professional or college sports, look and sound like television, and they use televised sports as a reference point for players.
This thesis takes a critical look at how these televisual sports videogames are situated in the broader sports media industrial complex of North America, while also considering how the televisual design of these games is meaningful for fans of sports. Specifically, the text looks at how sports videogames reflect or reinforce dominant ideologies of hegemonic sports culture. Building on critical theories in sports studies, and through critical close readings of videogame texts, this thesis explores the relationship between sports television production, and sports videogames, with a focus on features that are found in both. Features such as introductory sequences, audio commentary, in-game advertising, news tickers, and instant replay are all commonly found in both sports television and sports videogames.