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Activity: Takes place with a fixed time and schedule
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17th November
16:00 to 17:30
3 You will earn 3 bronze points for completing this activity.
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Heaven’s Vault, Archaeology, and the Supremacy of Language

17th November 16:00 to 17:30
“Our world is full of cycles”: On Heaven’s Vault, Archaeology, and the Supremacy of Language

“Our world is full of cycles”: On Heaven’s Vault, Archaeology, and the Supremacy of Language Jennifer Cromwell (Manchester Metropolitan University), with a response by Jane Draycott (University of Glasgow) Heaven’s Vault (Inkle, 2019) is an archaeological science-fiction interactive storytelling adventure game. As archaeologist Aliya Elasra you explore the Nebula, together with your robotic sidekick Six, deciphering the ancient script and language of the ‘Ancients’, on the basis of artefacts and sites that you discover along the way.

In this seminar, I will discuss how archaeology – and archaeologists – are presented, as well as the prominence of philology (the study of language) and its centrality to the narrative. In so doing, I will explore how the game both challenges conventional gaming (and pop-cultural) portrayals of archaeology and its colonial framework, but also how it succumbs to them.

Dr Jennifer Cromwell is a Senior Lecturer in Ancient History at Manchester Metropolitan University.

This seminar is part of the Manchester Game Studies Network series of events.

In A Nutshell...

  • An MGSN seminar......... focusing on research into games
  • Make connections......... between the worlds of scholarship and videogames
  • Contextualise your learning......... and apply it in new ways
  • Earn points......... 3 Rise points for attending
  • Earn up to 3 Rise points ... which can be recognised within your degree.


  • personal_video 16:00 to 17:30 on 17/11/21 - Takes place online
    Online Seminar