Saturday, June 11, 2011

Video Games as Art

There has been much discussion as to whether video games can be considered art. Right now, I would say no. There have been attempts, some of them good, but humanity has nearly nothing in the way of artistic video games. I think the main problem is that video games are interactive; the artist doesn't control everything, and cannot account for every possible viewer action.

This isn't to say that there isn't good art form within video games; the Final Fantasy series is well known for its musical scores, art design, stories, and characters. Many games have gotten one or more of these elements right, though few bring them together. I would even argue that game mechanics, in and of themselves, can be an art, as seen in Dance Dance Revolution, though I would call that paint-by-numbers in regards to artistic level.

In my recent post, I talked about how I will be working on video game programming.  Now, I'm taking that one step further.  I will work toward creating video games that can be considered art. 

I'm not really known as a creative person, though my interest in such has been growing over the past year.  My taking piano has made me interested in music composition.  My plan to take art classes has made me interested in design theory.  My interest in dance pushed me to buy and read a book on choreography.  My reading habit has always given me an interest in story and character composition. 

Now I want to bring it all together.  I will continue to take classes about music, art, dance, and theater while I make my move into game programming.  Within twenty years, I want to create a game that can be considered a work of art in and of itself.


  1. I'm trying to dig up a game I played which was supposed to be a self-portrait and give players the feel of having manic depression. But I can't find it and this list has probably got better art games anyway:

    Besides philosophical art, there's also pure aesthetic art, like that flower petal meditation game everyone seemed to be playing a year or two ago.

  2. Flower is a game I wish I had been able to try. Too bad it was only available for the PS3.

    I did a bit more thinking of this since I wrote it, and decided that my 'art' meant having a truly good story, like a novel that is considered a work of art. I'm not sure what I think of games that would be considered as 'abstract'.