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Ico, Rez and Super Monkey Ball


D-Side
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videogames are not art they are games. the clues are all there, it's quite simple.

Art is way to express yourself. Some developres achieve to express themselves in a videogame -- so indeed videogames are art. How cheap to say that videogames are not art, and if like you say, the proof is all there. Please bring it on. Furthermore, ever saw the artbooks of Metal Gear Solid and Zone of the Enders? Or the concept drawings of Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow? I definately consider games art.

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Art is way to express yourself. Some developres achieve to express themselves in a videogame -- so indeed videogames are art. How cheap to say that videogames are not art, and if like you say, the proof is all there. Please bring it on. Furthermore, ever saw the artbooks of Metal Gear Solid and Zone of the Enders? Or the concept drawings of Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow? I definately consider games art.

But those are designs, and are separate from the game. A game, on it's own, is not art. The difference is that art is something that is made to be art. A painting, a sculpture etc. A game is designed to be a game. It is not designed to be art. And if it, then it ceases to be a game, and is then art. If you see what I mean.

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I couldn't give a flying fuck if games are art, or not, as long as they are fun then I'm happy.

As mentioned by D-Side the games listed are overly used in threads to the point of seeing them mentioned can make me cringe, plus I'd add Animal Crossing to the list. Although that may be because I'm not a fan of most of the games mentioned, and get sick of seeing them appear in threads that started out with nothing to do with them in the first place.

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Art is way to express yourself. Some developres achieve to express themselves in a videogame -- so indeed videogames are art. How cheap to say that videogames are not art, and if like you say, the proof is all there. Please bring it on. Furthermore, ever saw the artbooks of Metal Gear Solid and Zone of the Enders? Or the concept drawings of Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow? I definately consider games art.

there is certainly artistic direction but the finished article is, by it's very definition, a game.

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Bullshit.

A finished article of words is a book or a poem.

A finished article of oil-based pigment is a painting.

A finished article of sound-recording is music.

A finished article of continious 24 photo's a second is a movie.

A finished article of a rock with bits smashed of is a statue.

Which are all regarded as 'art'. The medium is not important. Video can be art. Cowdung can be art. Everything can be art. Including games.

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True. But at the end, some games can be considered art. They were definately not made to be art -- but they can achieve that status. Or at least, they can become untouchable milestones that will be referred to for decades -- I think that is the case for Rez and Ico. To conclude, I would say that those are at least the most artistic games I have ever played.

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no it isn't. anything organized by conscious beings is an art. that's why we say things like "the art of conversation." even your posts are art. they're just lousy art.

Nice of you to use a figure of speech as an example of 'art'. Any more shining examples you'd like to raise before you get ignored completely?

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To conclude, I would say that those are at least the most artistic games I have ever played.

Indeed, but perhaps at this stage we have a very narrow perception of games art? Van Gogh was shunned in his day by the established. Could the same be happening now? Is the subtle being overlooked in favour of the staggering?

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Bullshit.

A finished article of words is a book or a poem.

A finished article of oil-based pigment is a painting.

A finished article of sound-recording is music.

A finished article of continious 24 photo's a second is a movie.

A finished article of a rock with bits smashed of is a statue.

Which are all regarded as 'art'. The medium is not important. Video can be art. Cowdung can be art. Everything can be art. Including games.

I totally agree on that.

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Bullshit.

A finished article of words is a book or a poem.

A finished article of oil-based pigment is a painting.

A finished article of sound-recording is music.

A finished article of continious 24 photo's a second is a movie.

A finished article of a rock with bits smashed of is a statue.

Which are all regarded as 'art'. The medium is not important. Video can be art. Cowdung can be art. Everything can be art. Including games.

can you spot the difference between everything you've described here and 'games' ?

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That it's not interactive?

(Which wouldn't count BTW, as modern musea and galleries are full of interactive works of art.)

sure you can have interavtive art. so the closest thing videogames get to that would be something like Jeff Minter's light synths.

the difference is that you play games to win. sure, you might derive all kinds of experiences from it but ultimately it's down to your skill at playing the game whether you win or not and nothing to do with artistic appreciation.

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True, but I don't think that's a criterium to decide whether it's art or not though. It might be a property of the medium. Just like a piece of music, dance or story-based art like a book or narrative movie needs to be followed from prologue to epilogue for the complete experience, while a painting can be taken in at a single glance.

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True, but I don't think that's a criterium to decide whether it's art or not though. It might be a property of the medium. Just like story-based art like a book or narrative movie needs to be followed from prologue to epilogue for the complete experience.

i think it is. is football, the game, art? is tiddly winks, cluedo etc?

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True, but I don't think that's a criterium to decide whether it's art or not though. It might be a property of the medium. Just like a piece of music, dance or story-based art like a book or narrative movie needs to be followed from prologue to epilogue for the complete experience, while a painting can be taken in at a single glance.

There still passive media.

Gaming isn't.

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It's different I think. The stadium a football match is played in, could be considered art (especially if you look at the stunning architecture of some of those buildings). The gameworld the game takes place in, could be compared to this stadium. The shirts could be designed by a master tailor and be considered art, just like the textures put on your gamecharacters. The rules themselves (which define the game) are not art (although even that is debatable) I suppose. But a videogame is more than just the rules. It's the world, story, characters etc.

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;)

Is the mundane art?

Sometimes.

There's plenty of mundane "art" out there, that's for sure.

Would I be right in interpreting your main points as:

1) Enough with the overuse of those three games as creative reference points already

2) Stop assuming that everyone agrees with you when you call them art

3) Show us some different games which could be considered art

?

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It's different I think. The stadium a football match is played in, could be considered art (especially if you look at the stunning architecture of some of those buildings). The gameworld the game takes place in, could be compared to this stadium. The shirts could be designed by a master tailor and be considered art, just like the textures put on your gamecharacters. The rules themselves (which define the game) are not art (although even that is debatable) I suppose. But a videogame is more than just the rules. It's the world, story, characters etc.

you're thinking about it too much. there's a clear distinction between playing a game and experiencing 'art'. anyone can experience art, there's no defined skill set required whereas there is always an aim in videogames which much be achieved in a pre-defined way.

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you're thinking about it too much. there's a clear distinction between playing a game and experiencing 'art'. anyone can experience art, there's no defined skill set required whereas there is always an aim in videogames which much be achieved in a pre-defined way.

I beg to differ. There is only one pre-defined way of enjoying a novel or movie (go along in the story), which is even less freedom than many games, but there's still a huge amount of space to think about themes or interpret characters or "get" or "miss the point of" movies or books, and indeed games, just as there is with a Rodin sculpture.

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I beg to differ. There is only one pre-defined way of enjoying a novel or movie (go along in the story), which is even less freedom than many games, but there's still a huge amount of space to think about themes or interpret characters or "get" or "miss the point of" movies or books, and indeed games, just as there is with a Rodin sculpture.

wrong. i could look at a painting by say, Paul Clee, and enjoy it for it's religious overtones whilst undestanding how pefectly balanced it is, geometically. someone else might derive a comepletely different experience from it. there is always only one aim in a game; to win.

edit. plus, i don't need any pre-defined skill set in order to appreciate the Clee painting, or listen to a piece of music, read a book etc (ok i need to be able to read but that's it!)

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wrong. i could look at a painting by say, Paul Clee, and enjoy it for it's religious overtones whilst undestanding how pefectly balanced it is, geometically. someone else might derive a comepletely different experience from it. there is always only one aim in a game; to win.

Yeah, and there's only one aim with a painting (if there is any statable aim at all): to understand. You're confusing the artist's aims (themes) with the viewer's. Even if the only goal in a game of Ico is to win, it's possible for, as this topic has shown, you to leave having understood the ingenius tactality and subtlety of the castle's design, the themes of loss of innocence and an interesting little riff on the idea of love.

EDIT- you do make a good point that it's necessary to have a certain level of skill to get into a linear game, however any good game will gradually build that skill in the player. It's not necessary to be a chess expert to get into Advance Wars and experience how they've captured odd little things about warfare (overstretched supply lines, choke points) with a few simple rules.

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Yeah, and there's only one aim with a painting (if there is any statable aim at all): to understand. You're confusing the artist's aims (themes) with the viewer's. Even if the only goal in a game of Ico is to win, it's possible for, as this topic has shown, you to leave having understood the ingenius tactality and subtlety of the castle's design, the themes of loss of innocence and an interesting little riff on the idea of love.

EDIT- you do make a good point that it's necessary to have a certain level of skill to get into a linear game, however any good game will gradually build that skill in the player. It's not necessary to be a chess expert to get into Advance Wars and experience how they've captured odd little things about warfare (overstretched supply lines, choke points) with a few simple rules.

ok, if you removed the gameplay from Ico and made it into a story (still on PS2), a movie if you like, then it could be called art.

anybody should be able to appreciate art, not just those willing to 'beat' the game.

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ok, if you removed the gameplay from Ico and made it into a story (still on PS2), a movie if you like, then it could be called art.

anybody should be able to appreciate art, not just those willing to 'beat' the game.

It wouldn't work though. It would be crap. There have no doubt been countless anime like that. Stripped of the tactality and the sense of isolation and your utter dependence on your own abilities, and the very real panicky threat of having Yorda snatched away, it would just be wank. It has to have that first-person perspective to get its themes across effectively.

I suppose the main reason I think of games as like art is the way I try to treat reviewing them these days:

Look at the thing absolutely dumbfounded as to how to critique it.

Describe key compositional features (main play mechanics in this case).

Get into the interesting details (at this point little tricks and clever things and interactions and contrasts start to become more obvious to me)

Describe more and more little things (main themes should be obvious by now, say panic or visceral satisfaction or peace and quiet, go back and rewrite a bit so that the critique is angled towards these)

Summarise main themes and the main ways the thing conveys these in final paragraph.

It worked for the Scottish Colourists, the cubists, Bauhaus buildings and post-impressionist paintings, and it tends to work for Metroid and Ico.

EDIT- Also, I see "beating" a game as much a necessity in appreciating it as watching a movie to its conclusion, reading a book to its finish (both of which could be quite tricky depending on the book) or learning the basics of composition and tone and the like (if you're not familiar with them already).

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It wouldn't work though.

but it could still be considered art.

what i don't get is that when someone says, games aren't art, they seem to think that this implies they don't require intelligence, which is rubbish. they're still not art though.

EDIT- Also, I see "beating" a game as much a necessity in appreciating it as watching a movie to its conclusion, reading a book to its finish (both of which could be quite tricky depending on the book) or learning the basics of composition and tone and the like (if you're not familiar with them already).
i don't need to be able to understand a movie to appreciate it, or i might have a different interpretation to someone else. you don't need to understand tone or composition to enjoy a painting just as you don't need to be able to read music to enjoy it or appreciate it.
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