I have an academic paper in vol. 2 of Replaying Japan journal, published by the Ritsumeikan Center for Game Studies, Kyoto. The title of the paper is ‘Frog Leaps In: Haiku and the Struggle For and Against the Natural World in Japanese RPGs’, and it compares the introduction of the character of Frog in the 1995 role-playing game Chrono Trigger to the structure of Matsuo Bashō’s famous ‘old pond’ haiku. The purpose of this comparison is to demonstrate that poetic concepts feature in (and can enhance our readings of) games as texts, and also to advance the suggestion that ‘characters’ or kyara (proto-characters, symbols) are a point of overlap between games and poems that can be used as the basis for intertextual play.
In other words, why shouldn’t we think of Bashō’s frog and Chrono Trigger‘s Frog as connected, as variations on the same intellectual plaything that can then be used again by other artists, a character who crosses space, time and genre?
The journal is not currently available to buy online, but will presumably become available through university libraries.