Games as art: the deeper issue

My friend Simon just wrote his opinion on whether games should be considered art. I wrote a wordy response to it, and I either planned to or already have written my opinion on whether games should be considered art. It doesn’t matter.

DISCLAIMER: I’m going to be awesomely ageist here, for (I believe) good reason. Also, please note that someone is “old” to me when they start acting “old.” You can be an old fuddy-duddy at 10, and young at 100. It’s a mindset, not a physical thing, mkay?

What matters here is: WHY ARE YOU OLD PEOPLE SO ADAMANT THAT WE’RE THE EMOTIONAL ONES? Why don’t you just… not care? We say it’s art, you say it’s not, you put it down and say we’re trying to defend and validate our interest in games… so why do you disagree with us? We understand that maybe you don’t like it. There are plenty of games I don’t like. Maybe you just haven’t found the right game, or maybe you bring your prejudices in and assume it to be some new form of video nasty that it would be completely demeaning for you to even try, lest enjoy? Why do you still resist it as some new-fangled anti-art, and then fail to acknowledge that maybe if you stopped being so stubborn about it, we’d stop being so emphatic? And YES, you CAN have your opinion. But so can we. And we can accuse you of being stubborn and old as much as you accuse us of protesting too much or being defensive. I love that line of defense: “You’re getting defensive about this, aren’t I allowed to have my opinion?” Personally, I think you’re belittling me and my opinions and then wanting me to back down and swallow this. Oh well. What a lovely rant.

2 thoughts on “Games as art: the deeper issue

  1. As a non-gamer, I’ve stayed out of this issue as long as I could (well, at least until I published that article). What bothers me are the “fuddy-duddys” (and yes, younglings and oldlings alike) who completely dismiss the argument. The conversation about art is JUST AS IMPORTANT as the medium, so if we can have an honest, open and intelligent conversation about it, can’t it be considered so?


    • I think it’s one of the most infuriating aspects of the public reception of games. It’s coming-of-age growing pains for the games industry, and how sad that as a culture, we still haven’t learned to embrace the new so it is allowed to flourish. I can’t lay blame purely on the fuddy-duddys (there’s also arrogance that comes from a certain breed of hardcore gamers), but they’re certainly the ones that stick out a LOT.

      I think more non-gamers (or casual/occasional gamers) who aren’t totally offended by them need to speak up and tell everyone to just calm down 🙂


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