The Games as Art Debate

Video Game Makers Favor Diversion over Depth on NPR is a four-minute audio except from National Public Radio's All Things Considered program discussing the tackling of tough topics in video games. Along the way we hear from Ian Bogost, learning that the professor of game design at Georgia Tech feels it's time gamers "demand" games emulate Hollywood by taking on subjects like the war in Iraq and teen pregnancy. They also talk with Harvey Smith, saying his recent BlackSite: Area 51 comes closer than most games to succeeding in this regard. They quote Bogost on BlackSite's "importance," while also acknowledging the game was not successful commercially or critically, a point they don't seem interested in exploring in tying this all back into the question of whether video games represent art or entertainment. They do acknowledge that serious games about topics like genocide and third-world poverty are being created on the "fringes of the industry" but that these are "messages gussied up as games and they don't have to contend with the marketplace," a point made without any attempt at connecting cause-and-effect. The piece concludes quoting Bogost saying that until the mainstream games industry "gets serious, its cultural prominence is just a wasted opportunity."
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Apr 15, 2008, 17:32
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No subject Apr 15, 2008, 17:32
Apr 15, 2008, 17:32
 
BlackSite was a pretty awful game. I rented it one weekend and played through the whole thing.

The best part of the game was the art and level design. Their level designers need to be given a raise, because that's about the only part of the game that held up well.

The storyline was awful, the animations were poor, and the overall pacing of the story was pathetic. Not to mention that it really felt like a rushed project that was not play-tested well.

It definitely did not have the elusive polish that the top AAA titles have.

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