Zelda food, contextual essay


My digital artifact aimed at finding the food representation in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, the relationship between the game and culture, and answering are the food relevant actives important to the gameplay, or fandom life?


The reason why I chose to focus on food in Zelda was that I personally interested in food culture in general. Still, also, there is an article mentioned Zelda food while he discussed video game food significant elements. 

Additionally, as Esposito(2005) identified, “a videogame is a game which we play thanks to an audiovisual apparatus and which can be based on a story.” In the narrative, in the life of the characters, food is always there. Nowadays, you can find food appeared in more video games, and cooking in video games gained more and more popularity. Perhaps it is a strategy that the game producer attempted to attract more various players. 

Methodology & Research:

To dig deeper into the game food topic, Chris suggested me to use the triangulated analytical framework (pitch comment), as it enables me to consider the concept from three perspectives. I couldn’t agree more about how helpful this triangular is, especially in the researching stage, it helped me to organize all the general, academic, and subject materials.

To build up my analytical framework, I began looking at subject materials and notes. I went back to week 1 to summarised the information about game culture, readings about narrative and active audience help me to have an overall idea about my work. I did further research on game advertising, which leads me to the advergaming phenomenon. Eventually, Consalvo and Raessens’s readings are fundamental for my participatory discussion.

My final analytical framework & relevant researches:

I researched both game text and para-text, Zelda game, and fan work.

In the Beta stage, I initially planned to write three posts for each subject. Later, I found it would be easier to read if I solely have a long blog post, as all the information is connected with each other. 

To be honest, I haven’t played Zelda before; actually, I haven’t properly played any video game before. To ensure I understand the game, I spent plenty of time watching game-playing on YouTube. In the screening session, I found the cooking is a big part of BOTW. Even though some players much prefer fighting and solving puzzles, they had to stop a few minutes from cooking. 

To give myself an active fan experience, I thought it would be better if I, myself, tried to recreate the Zelda food. In practice, firstly, I realized that I became more familiar with the game modality as I was carefully decoding the game cooking animation. Secondly, I subconsciously accepted Japanese food culture when I was researching how to make Onigiri (rice ball).


During my researching phase, I found tons of sources about the relationship between food and society, identity, and community. However, there are very few blogs that discussed food in video games. I think my post will give public audiences more insight into the Zelda food or game food as a whole. 

Overall Limitations: 

As Jack commented on my Beta, I had too much information in my article. I’ve really struggled with the big number of words…you can tell from all of the blogs.

I think this is because I wanted to express information in the easiest way for general readers. And when I paid too much attention to explaining, I tended to find case studies, blogs to help me demonstrate academic theories.

Besides, I need to address more from the subject material, as most of my academic sources are from Google Scholar.

Overall Success:

My Reddit Question on the representation of Zelda food gained really good opinions from both loyal fans and new players. They gave me valuable suggestions on how to critically analyze game modality, which is the part I’m most unfamiliar with.

I’m glad I took action on recreating Zelda food. When I was cooking, I felt how the three dimensions of the analytical framework put together.

Overall, I’m proud of myself for tackling this hard task. I have accomplished an academic task on researching the subject that I’m unacquainted with. In making this digital artifact, I learned how to engage people online, how to organize subject material with public news, and how to use the real-life experience to understand academic theories.



Reddit discussions:

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