The Case for Video Games

The Case for Video Games


I am not a gamer. If anything, I tend to be
overwhelmed by and fearful of the addictive immersiveness of video games. But the first
time I saw this game Monument Valley, I was completely and utterly mesmerized. By its
spare beauty, its M.C. Escher-like sequence of pathways and structures and ladders that
this quiet little person deftly navigates and unlocks. I was not just entertained, I was moved. It
was poetic, challenging, metaphorically resonant. How was my experience of this game in any
way lesser than my encounters with other forms of art? And what else out there was I missing? This is the case for video games. Video games have a rich history, beginning
before you think they did with proto-computer games like Tennis for Two in 1958. But they
really kicked off in the early 1970s with the explosion of arcade games, and the dawn
of home consoles, with minimalist wonders like Pong and an impressive variety of plastic
boxes with faux-wood details. And there have been a huge range of kinds
of video games since, of varying quality and popularity. Video games are not a passing
fad. They are a multi-billion dollar industry–I mean seriously, as big if not bigger than
the film industry–and it sees growth every year, evolving as the world and technology
evolve, and as developers and corporations and gamers respond to those changes. It’s hard to talk about video games as being
one thing because they perform varying functions and address differing needs. I mean, some
games are primarily about pattern recognition and spatial reasoning, like positioning Mario
above a pipe, or dodging bullets, or fitting blocks into an allotted space. Other games are educational, either vaguely
or strategically, imparting history, or math, or engineering. Sometimes you can choose whether
or not you want the game to be educational. But video games can teach and test your coordination
and rhythm, alone and of course with friends. Competition is at the core of many games,
but so is collaboration, allowing you to work together with others toward a goal, whether
your teammates are in the same room or on a different continent. Now it may obvious but worth noting that video
games are almost always about strategy and problem-solving. You can learn the rules of
sports, and play them with less risk of injury. You can simulate potentially real world situations,
and also not- real world situations. Video games allow you to build worlds, evolve
worlds, and explore the amazingly intricate worlds that others have created. Who doesn’t
want to turn into a cat and jump through a tree or discover a new planet… a planet
that admittedly no one else will ever see in this vast and lonely universe. The quality of CGI in games has improved significantly
over the years, offering up immersive, cinematic worlds, and almost-but-not-quite naturalistic
reproductions of human beings. We’re still in the uncanny valley, folks, and we likely
will be for some time. Developers have brought in actors you know and love to voice characters
in a number of games. Peter Dinklage: I’m a ghost actually. And some games feature footage of real live
actors, like Her Story, in which you explore a video database of fictional interviews of
a woman to try to uncover the truth of what happened. Video games are really good at telling stories,
letting a narrative unravel over time. Like a good novel or movie, they’re paced, alternating
periods of fast-paced action with slower moments allowing for exposition and character development. Movies are actually a really good point of
comparison here, as they’re also a more populist, accessible art form. Some are considered “high art” or “film” and others that are, well, SUPERBABIES: BABY
GENIUSES 2. And like our taste for movies, sometimes we
want something fun and easy, and other times we feel like something super challenging and
intense. Likewise for the kind of art you see in a gallery or museum. One day you might want to gaze at a captivating
landscape, whose equivalent in gaming might be something like Firewatch. Another day you
want to stand before Picasso’s Guernica and feel the pain and misery of the Spanish
Civil War, an experience closer to something like playing This War of Mine, about a group of civilians trying to survive in a besieged city. Now there’s been plenty of work assigned
to the realm of “visual” or “fine art” that has involved video game technology. Like
Cory Arcangel’s 2002 work Super Mario Clouds, for which he modified the code of the original
1985 Super Mario Brothers, erasing all sound and all visual elements except the sky and
the clouds that scroll across it. Video games have also been collected by art
museums, like Jenova Chen and Nick Clark’s flOw, and Jason Rohrer’s Passage, a five
minute game where a character moves through the stages of life and dies only once, at
the end. Both of which were acquired by The Museum
of Modern Art. (But for what it’s worth, they also have The Sims.) There are a number
of creators making games who work between disciplines, not confining themselves to one
field or another. Actually opera might be a more fitting point
of comparison for video games, in particular the idea of the total work of art, or gesamtkunstwerk,
propounded by German composer Richard Wagner. Rather than all the arts existing separately
in their own silos, Wagner wanted his own works to synthesize music, drama, dance, costume,
set design, and everything else into one harmonious whole. Similarly, video games are consolidations
of the creative output of many– writers, designers, programmers, composers, concept
artists, modelers, directors, sound engineers, and many other roles– all brought together
into one package. The creation of video games is largely a collective enterprise, but
there are plenty of individual artists and auteurs who are
credited as the visionaries behind given games. Like Shigeru Miyamoto, creator of classics
like Mario Bros. and The Legend of Zelda, and Hideo Kojima, the lead behind the Metal
Gear series. But while most popular games are truly team efforts, there are still lone
wolves out there, like Eric Barone, the single developer behind Stardew Valley, one of the
top selling titles of 2016 on Steam, who created the game by working on his own ten hours a
day, seven days a week, for four years. Like any artist, a game developer begins with
a relative blank slate. They have a particular set of skills and technologies at their disposal,
and a knowledge, either thin or deep, of what’s been done before. Whether working alone or
with gobs of money and a team of folks behind them, developers build complex, many-layered
macrocosms for others to investigate and decipher and explore. And that’s what really sets video games
apart: they need you to complete them. All art is interactive to some degree. If a painting hangs in a forest and no one sees it, is it really artwork? Sculpture and installation
require you to walk around them, to take them in in full. More and more works of art assume and necessitate
viewer involvement, but very few as inherently as any video game. They not only respond to
you, but adapt and offer diverse experiences depending on the choices you make. This extreme
interactivity makes it so that you, at least to some extent, become the co-author. You
are the artist, too. You can try to understand what the developer might be trying to say
or accomplish, and you can also bend the experience to embody or project how you see the world. There are genres of video games, just as with
other forms of art. You’ve got your first person shooters and role-playing games and
platformers. But also like other forms of art, the expectations and rules for every
kind of game have been stretched and broken and intentionally subverted. Zelda: Breath
of the Wild allows for open-ended gameplay, enabling you to navigate the world in an unstructured
and nonlinear way. Some titles completely discard the idea that
a game needs a clearly defined objective, like… What am I supposed to be doing on
this island exactly? Or maybe the developers completely throw away the idea of a cutscene,
pioneered way back in PacMan, and make the entire game feel like a single unbroken tracking
shot. Or maybe… the game’s objective is to take care of a fish-man-thing? Not every
new idea is a winner people. But video games require much more than coordination.
Whether solo enterprises or social undertakings, they challenge players to think critically
about not only the world of the game but also the real world around them. The game The Last of Us, in which a smuggler has the job of escorting a teenage girl across
a post-apocalyptic, zombie-fied United States, sparked discussions about what it means to
be a father and the dynamics of father-daughter relationships. Games like Life is Strange tackle difficult
problems head-on, like online harassment and depression. Life is Strange 2 follows teenager
brothers of Mexican descent who are dealing with the traumatic death of a parent and citizenship
and racism and religious extremism. One first person exploration game, Gone Home,
follows a young woman as she returns to her Oregon home in 1995, finds it empty, and pieces
together that her family fell apart after her parents found out about her younger sister’s
lesbian relationship. Video games can provide a platform for many
underrepresented voices and stories, like Never Alone, which was developed in collaboration
between game makers and Alaska Native storytellers, and is based on a traditional Iñupiaq tale. U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia
ruled in 2011 that video games deserve First Amendment protection, just like books, plays,
and movies, writing: “video games communicate ideas — and even social messages — through
many familiar literary devices (such as characters, dialogue, plot, and music) and through features
distinctive to the medium (such as the player’s interaction with the virtual world).” Of course, you don’t have to look far to
find a game that will offend you, no matter who you are. But that’s true with any art
form. There are big issues with gaming, but I’d
argue they’re not baked into the medium. As Seth Schiesel argued in 2018 “It’s
not the content; it’s the culture.” The online gaming culture, that is, where bigotry,
bullying, sexism, and all sorts of toxic behavior have run amok and ruined the enjoyment for
many. It can be hard if not impossible to separate
these issues from the games themselves, however they certainly aren’t exclusive to the gaming
community. Video games have always been a reflection of their times, and these are indeed
the challenges of now. Whether you play them or not, gaming culture
extends far beyond screens and headsets, and is no longer confined to virtual space. But
it never was, really. Arcades were physical places where human bodies
shared proximity. LAN parties in the early aughts were actually real parties. Playing Wii together and Guitar Hero and Dance
Dance Revolution aren’t merely virtual experiences, and neither is getting into a car accident
trying to catch Pokemon. Video gaming, like much of modern life, blends
online and offline experience. And it’s firmly part of culture and cultural memory,
whether you consider it high art or low. In his 2005 book “Everything Bad Is Good
for You,” Steven Johnson reminds us that there is nothing trivial about game play. When negotiating various worlds, young and
old alike practice patience, delay gratification, and negotiate complex social relationships. Gaming, according to Johnson, is “about finding
order and meaning in the world, and making decisions that help create that order.” The more I learn about video games, the more
my respect grows for those who routinely fling themselves into the unknown of a new game. Armed with knowledge of past games, sure,
but up for the challenge of finding order and meaning in a new world. Ready to confront
unforeseeable futures, failure, death. It reminds me of the bravery required to walk
into an art gallery, where you’re unsure of what you’ll find or what will be required
of you, but are nonetheless open to whatever the artists have in store. When it comes to video games, there is still
so much left to be done, so much territory to conjure and explore, so many more perspectives
to offer, on the part of developers as well as players. It’s an outstandingly elastic medium, receptive
and also susceptible to all the best and worst we humans have to offer it. Video games shape
our understanding of humanity just as they are shaped by it. Oh and… they’re also
really… fun. Special thanks to our director, editor, and
lifelong gamer Brandon Brungard for his help advising on this episode and bringing it to life. Also, before you go, did you know that this
channel is called the Art Assignment because, along with exploring ideas about art and art
history, we also give out assignments? Not the kind where you have to buy paint or
stress out about your inability to draw, but the kind that ask you to use your phone, or
bits of materials you have lying around, to make your life more fulfilling. My book, You Are an Artist, gathers together
some of the assignments presented on this show plus a bunch of really good new ones.
It’ll be out on April 14, and is available for preorder right now. Thanks to all of our patrons for supporting
The Art Assignment, especially our grandmasters of the arts Tyler Calvert-Thompson, Divideby Zero Collection, David Golden, and Ernest Wolfe.

100 thoughts on “The Case for Video Games

  1. Hey .. just i was thinking .. what Leonardo or Michaelangelo kind of artist think about modern art…? I mean make a video about it😂

  2. Sorry you got dysentery☹

  3. POLYGON FANS SAY WHAT

  4. I've always thought of some intersection between video games and art in terms of figuration/abstraction. I started gaming in the age of 8-bit. The technical limitations of this early technology imposed a high level of abstraction to the imagery of video games. I mean, look at Pong, it's extreme minimalism. Even though we might consider a square to be almost opposite to a circle, the dynamics of Pong made us see a ball in the shape of a pixel. It feels similar to how we experience minimalist art. In fact, Pong looks like a Mondrian interpretation of ping-pong. So it's interesting how video games were born in inevitable minimalism and abstraction and with time and technological advancements they were "freed" into realism and figuration, which is the opposite direction of evolution that we usually think of western art (not saying that this notion is accurate, though). And as computing power increased and 3D came along, even though I was enthralled by the new looks and possibilities, I also remember a very precise feeling of those old flat games having some qualities that had been lost in these new ones. That's because they're both valid approaches that yield different but equally valid results and impressions on the player, just like both abstract and realist paintings have different capacities and both can reach the viewer through different ways. And we can see that because 2D games and realist paintings never went away and are still very popular in their fields. Now think of freaking Minecraft. I was baffled when i first saw it. A contemporary 3D game that reinterprets the pixelated look of the past. It's so meta, it's like they're saying "Yeah, we like the 3D experience, but we also like pixelated games where everything is square, so we made 3D pixels, we do have the computing power to render organic-looking textures and shapes, but we choose to go with humans who look like robots in a world that looks like piles of boxes." It's such a bold aesthetic choice, making such a statement about how video game aesthetics don't have to be chained to either abstraction nor realism, and it's so self-referencial to the history of video games, and it still manages to be one of the most popular games out there. Anyway, just wanted to share my thoughts. Video games definitely have a very interesting aesthetic history.

  5. Love this video, it really analizes games in a respectful way as art. I personally don’t play games, because I it makes me feel too stressed. But I envy games, because they can escape into another world.

  6. As someone who used games to help me get through some pretty hard times in my life, thank you so much for this video. It puts into perfect words my arguments on why gaming is more than just pixels

  7. „Rickaard!“

  8. And also, there are games made specifically with the intention of artistic expression or contain a high dose of artistic technique in them. John Clowder makes surrealist collage games like Middens and Gingiva, and Mason Lyndroth made Hylics. All super recommended.

  9. Does this mean you're going to do one on fashion being art

  10. Me, an artist that draws inspiration from video games: hell yeah finally we can start having these discussions that I've always wanted to ha-
    Sarah: 9:52
    Me, a gamer: Oh no, here we go again

  11. What about Concept Art made for games ? I would like to see a video about concept art for games 🙂

  12. So glad ConcernedApe (Eric Barone) was mentioned. He truly deserves all the recognition <3

  13. Do a case for

    Manga as Art
    Body Art
    Street Art
    Fashion as Art

  14. The video helped me put a finger on why I keep coming back to Art Asignment videos and why they move me so much. The topics are interesting and accessibly presented, sure. But the main appeal for me is the deep compassion and kindness that Sarah's videos convey. It's a way of looking at the world and especially at what humans do and experience that does not shirk mentioning problems and challenges, but never ridicules or degrades others. In a way the Art Asignment videos are exercises in consciously experiencing human dignity; in others and ourselves. So thank you Sarah and all the others who contrinbute to the videos. I can only aspire to cultivate such an open and wholesome mindset.

  15. You had me at Yoshi

  16. u ever cry about video games bc of a video about video games

  17. but why did this video make me feel like shedding a single, happy tear? i’m no gamer, just mario kart and dated pokémon games and smash bro of course.

    games are great bc my siblings and cousins can still enjoy something we all enjoy despite age or skill :):)

  18. Can you do The Case for Anime?

  19. sarah i love u so much

  20. How dare you say that Superbabies isn’t art…

  21. I was about to say something about that supreme court ruling! It's the only oral argument I've ever read. Seeing how the justices responded in how nothing differentiates the interactive quality of games from say a choose-your-own adventure novel was quite the defense of how this art isn't new.

  22. I would say that videogame culture has been mistaken for internet culture. The toxicity that is present in online videogames stems from anonymity, a quality inherent to the internet, and NOT videogames. So what you're actually referring to in the video is INTERNET culture, something else entirely.

  23. I love games where you can build relationships and move the story towards a more collective happy "ending", like with Undertale and Stardew Valley and Papers Please, but also explore the consequences of playing in a selfish or destructive manner. Profound experiences can come with that, they have certainly been to me. Also, some scenes and music are just too gorgeous.

  24. Excellent as always!

  25. This feels like it belongs in a different series along things like “how to read sculpture” or “textile art” given other case for videos something like “the case for David cage” or “the case for remedy” might fit better.

  26. THANK U!! For someone who works at a frameshop and mainly work with fine art and trying to get my co workers to realize that video games are/can be so much more and should be considered an art form-this helps so much!!!!

  27. Such a good video as always, y'all are incredible

  28. Fuck man, you made me cry, this is a very touching video, kudos to you.

  29. Try "Gris". I think, you'll love it 😊

  30. blah blah Video Games!

    (I chose to comment something)

  31. "You can learn the rules of sports, and play them with less risk of injury" – shout out to John's FIFA injury 😂

  32. Video games are a form of art!

  33. i'm like NOT getting paid for this but You Are An Artist is really neat little book. A couple copies landed at our office here in NYC about a month ago and the exercises inside are really cool. Keep up the good work!

  34. I think you may mean the magnovox odyssey two!! The original came way before that. It being older than pong consoles and in ways more advanced and in others less so. The odyssey two had a keyboard and carts with handles.

  35. Now we need a video on board games! And one on ttrpg’s. If, in context, we can distinguish between them and board games.

  36. Screw this! Seaman is sooooo goooooood!!

  37. If you like this video you'll probably like the channel "Errant Signal"

  38. I don't think we are in the uncanny valley anymore.
    Yes, it's not perfectly real.
    But it doesn't look bad anymore.
    Just look at games pre 2010 and post 90s.
    They don't unintentionally look creepy anymore

  39. This was a good one. I would suggest that video games are an art form but not all individual video games are necessarily art. Some are little more than interactive stores or casinos cynically meant to extract money from users, for instance, while others might just be kitschy diversions meant only to capitalize on people's nostalgia.

  40. im not a gamer at all, but after i finished the Journey, i was crying.

  41. Abstract Art and Expressionism with Original Soundtrack Crushi 🧡 💛 💚 💙 💜 🖤

  42. Consistently astonishing documentaries. Crushi 🧡 💛 💚 💙 💜 🖤

  43. Yes! Yes! Yes! https://youtu.be/cUjf2laX1ag

  44. The background music sampled this recording… https://youtu.be/cDLMJccb1YU Rick Rubin by Spank Rock

  45. Monument Valley was also the first game that spoke to me too!! One of the only games I like

  46. Try Nier: Automata if you want artsy games with in-cre-di-ble story and message. Keep it up Sarah & co! Beautiful insights as always.

  47. Could numbers exist without human minds, if affirmative then so could art, never perceived by minds.

  48. Awesome work as always! I also made a video on the topic on my channel, tackling it from a different perspective than this one.

  49. 10:41 awww cs 1.6 the thing i didn't know i was expecting

  50. It's wild how you've taken a position I agree so wholeheartedly and make it feel so cringe, but I mean, I suppose I could see it being worthwhile to someone who doesn't already believe this?

  51. fantastic commentary, and KILLER KILLER PRESENTATION DUDE

  52. DAVID O REILY – ' EVERYTHING ' GAME.. its literally one of the greatest works of art ever imo

  53. Anyone who says video games are not art does not really know what a video game is. If the only video games I had ever seen was fortnite and mario, maybe I'd feel the same way. I might feel even worse about it if my child learned the n word from hearing it in voice chat, and get offended at the mere suggestion that something so destructive to me could be considered art. It isn't reasonable, logical, or well researched, but it is loud and painful, and sometimes that's all it takes.

  54. extremely thrilled about people learning terms like "gesamtkunstwerk" from a channel about video games and other people learning about video games from a channel about art history

  55. In grad school in 2011 for my MFA in fine art, I failed my final review because I was told the interactive side scrolling exploration environment I created was "not art"

  56. Breath of the Wild is a beautiful work of art.

  57. If they wish to gamify our murder, I say let them. Life is play and I would not want to deprive my enemy of a high score. Perhaps they will make a playmate of my familiar friend. Admiration is the most rigged contest there is, and I want none of it!

  58. There’s an article written by Tom Marks about a game called Outer Wilds and how playing the game has made his less fearful of his mortality. I recommend reading it, though fair warning there are spoilers.

  59. There’s this game called Dreams that allows you to make your own art.

  60. Sarah has dysentery. lol

  61. Would love to see a Case For Photography too! 🙌

  62. I absolutely consider Katamari Damacy to be not only an example of powerful art, but specifically hitting that idea of gesamtkunstwerk. The music is an eclectic mix of genres and moods all jumbled together in a way that's weirdly harmonious, the visuals are simplified but run the full range from achingly mundane to shocking and bizarre, the gameplay is hypnotic, everything about it comes together to bring a unified, cohesive experience, with nothing being just present for spectacle or because it seemed necessary. Very much like Untitled Goose Game (which clearly has some artistic inspiration therefrom), the mood it brings is sometimes one of stress, but often one of joy and wonder. It's really important to remember that art doesn't have to be sad to be moving, doesn't have to be dark to be powerful, and that being inspired can come in all sorts of ways.

    Seriously, the work you do on this channel is so excellent. The perspective you bring to art, and invite us to share, is so open and free and just ready to feel things and to imagine, and I think it's a message a lot more people could stand to hear.

  63. Yo, great video but it needs fucking spoiler warnings.

  64. 12:04
    UNTITLED GOOSE GAME YES

  65. I received a Bachelor's of Fine Arts in Animation for Video Game Development and applaud this incredibly well thought out video! You hit so many games which I studied in school, including the less desirable of the bunch (looking at you Seaman, although it is both trickier to play and more fun than you'd think.). Thank you for recognising the art and artists it takes to make these beautiful pieces and hopefully, this video will open someone's mind on videogames as art, and maybe they'll even pick up a game and try it themselves. Words cannot express how much I loved this episode. This is what I always hope to convey in video games, and to show that video games are an art form!!

  66. "Rick-Ard WaGner" lol xD

  67. hey, if video-gaame/artsy analysis interests you, check the youtube channel "game next door" (theyspeakfrench but they have subtitles)
    ps:don't start with the firsts episodes:)

  68. Despite saying you don't play games yourself. The variety and quality of games in this video is quite shocking

  69. Finally someone that has realised that video Games are not just fortnite, candy crush and league of legends

  70. sarah queen u gotta play Nier automata

  71. bideo gaems

  72. This is a good video.

  73. Longtime fan of the channel. Don't shit on Seaman.

  74. Still waiting on that case for graffiti video

  75. We really need similar videos about animation. I feel like the art world has always treated it as a minor, technical aspect of film in general, failing to see the unique world that it allows and how collaborative it is.

  76. This was a great video.

  77. I think the most important takeaway here is that Richard Wagner could've been a video game designer.

  78. Gran turismo sport is a beautiful racing game/simulator which allows the gamer to create their own personal design/art on various vehicles.

    Love your content very informative.

  79. 9:36 that weird moment where me and former conservative Supreme Court Judge Antonin Scalia actually agree on something

  80. Very few pieces of art or entertainment have stayed with me like "The Last of Us". That is a tremendous game.

  81. this video was so moving. I so appreciate The Art Assignment’s willingness to take novel forms of art seriously. y’all also clearly articulated all the great and awful things about video games!! this is so hard to do! thank you for this!

  82. I love video games!!

  83. Try "That Dragon, Cancer" game

  84. Paper, Please completely change my mentality toward the world and other people. Till this day I haven't come across any piece of media that hit me this hard.

  85. Every new form is initially met with transition. Every form has differences. One road is as good as another if it's the destination is the same. Sometimes where you arrive is completely different than you expected. Exploring or connecting the new places is it's own form.

  86. One game that is absolutely a piece of art is Gris. Amazing watercolor art and an emotional story

  87. gamers are violent people
    they are always angry
    and they tend to hate other people that dont play the same game as them
    they also love to argue
    and get offended by anything
    they are the bread and butter of cancel culture

  88. This vid is an 8th grade 5000 word essay on “what is a video game”

  89. anybody who has ever played LIMBO knows the power of games

  90. Great video! Minor correction at 1:03, the Odyssey you have pictured is the original but was released in 1972. The Maganvox Odyssey 2 was released in 1978

  91. i love you SO MUCH

  92. For a non gamer, her knowledge of games and their history is amazing!

  93. Next up: The Case for Memes lol

    Great video, keep up the good work!

  94. Um im sorry but seaman is absolutely a winning piece of art

  95. You may quite like the game "The Witness".

  96. Did not expect it to veer towards and compare video games to opera! That is why I love this channel… always taking my views and horizons and expanding them. Very well said through and through. Thank you for another wonderful video!

  97. As someone active in the videogame community, I refuse to ever call myself a gamer, and have refused to engage in discussions with others who proudly bear that title (namely white dudebros who play shooter things).
    Sadly, videogames are tame and highly unintelligent, to the point where their main audience is not people interested in art, but in commodities. That's sadly what most videogames are, too. Most gamers have a very frivolous understanding of art and its significance, with a vast majority of them thinking a game just has to look pretty or realistic and have cheap emotional moments (read: The Last of Us, God of War, Uncharted, Spider-man, pretty much every single western blockbuster that's ever been released) to qualify as art.
    Isn't it often agreed upon in other art mediums like film and music that the mainstream blockbusters are not where the most important art lies? It's in the indie spaces. Sure, the mainstream serves as entertainment for the masses, which is totally fine. Avengers films are really well made, their production values are insane, Ariana Grande's music fits the same descriptions. But it's widely agreed by music and film fans that blockbusters and top 40 musicians are (generally) not art, they're entertainment.
    Look back at videogames, and indie videogames are always ignored and seen as lesser, unpolished "products", unlike in music where those who actually care about the medium have an ever growing set of independent artists they're interested in, and a lot of genres where they know they'll find works that interest them. Meanwhile, videogames like God of War are lauded as the peak of the medium. A sad reflection, considering how shallow that game is. They're not even consistent about it, how many people still talk about God of War? Not many. You know why? It's not the hot thing anymore, it's been almost two years since it came out, gamers have moved on from the then-shiny product, to the shinier, newer ones. What does that mean? That God of War wasn't celebrated as the apex of videogames because of its depth, for its intelligence, for its cultural relevance, but because of how fun, popular and shiny it was at the time. Kubrick's films are studied academically to this day, and I believe you'd be hard pressed to argue it's because of how fun and shiny they are.
    Those tendencies prove to be detrimental to the medium as an art form when actual "art games" are created.
    NieR: Automata is an example of a blockbuster with real value as a piece of art, yet gamers widely missed the point with that videogame, given that the incorrect perception of a "good, well written story" being the defining factor of a work of art is also widely spread in the gaming culture. NieR: Automata is a videogame of artistic value comparable to that of the greatest novels, ballets, films, and what have you, and yet because it was so subtle with its themes and messages, it was mostly lauded as "a really fun action videogame with philosophical elements in its story", so it effectively was the shiny thing at the time, until the next shiny thing came out, leaving that game and its depth to be just one of "IGN's Top 10 Games of 2017".
    Of course, there's a niche audience of videogame players that still talk and think about that game, having the rightfully in-depth discussions that game deserves. It's sadly not remembered as fondly with the mainstream audiences, who claim "other games have better combat systems", "the graphics look primitive", "there's a lot of bugs".
    A lot is to be said about gamers and how they work in reverse towards videogames being perceived and studied as art. What is an art form if its own audience doesn't engage with it as art?
    They play the shiny new game, and instead of thinking of the game's depth or lack thereof, they just go back to Fortnite, where the developers throw new shiny stuff every now and then for them to buy and keep their commodity-longing hearts satisfied.
    So sadly, I am on the side of thought that videogames are art, but gamers (and developers making such shitty, shallow, product games) do an incredibly poor job at representing that

  98. Love this video!!

  99. Man. Dreams PS4 b-roll would have fit in so perfectly

  100. What of the best analysis I ever saw

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