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Submitted by ssj2gohan83 550d ago | article

Videogame critic knocks fans for ‘warped worldview’ rejecting legitimate debate

Arturo Garcia: Videogame critic Chris Franklin released a biting commentary of many fans of the industry on Sunday, calling out fans who want games to be “recognized” as an artform but also complaining when critics point out instances of problematic messaging or presentation.

“They’ll bum-rush [Roger] Ebert or any other respected figure and insist they take games seriously as art,” Franklin argued. “But as soon as anyone does try to take a game’s claims of artistic intent seriously by looking at the game’s content and meaning then suddenly the line becomes ‘Oh, they’re just games!’ ‘Stop being so serious.’ ‘They’re just for fun!’” (Culture)

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PoSTedUP  +   550d ago
games are art.
they can be taken serioulsly.
they are taken serioulsly.
they should be taken serioulsly as anyother form of media
how can you tell its the same people demanding this then contridicting themselves?
if it is, then they are stupid
the crime rates in california started dropping (and continued to drop every year) since the very same year GTAsan andreas was released (every form of crime btw).
cleft5  +   550d ago
Never even heard of this guy before this, clearly just another attention seeker.
3-4-5  +   549d ago
Art, Music, Video Game, Story

You can only get all of this in one medium..

And that is Video games.

* Music has music, but no visuals, and if you say music video, ok...but no game.

* TV has music and art/visuals, but no gameplay/videogame

* Same for movies.

Video games are the only place you can combine all of these and a lot of the time the result is beautiful.

Playing a video game could actually physically enhance your abilities as well as mentally (hand eye coordination and such)...

Can staring at a painting do that? no
#1.2 (Edited 549d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
MyFeetHurt  +   550d ago
Sorry, i love 'em, but games are not art.

They are produced FIRST to make money, not make a statement.
goldwyncq  +   550d ago
You can say the same with movies and books which have artistic merits.
cleft5  +   550d ago
You do know there are a lot of games that are made 100% free with no goal of seeking out financial profit whatsoever. Also, something being designed to be profitable doesn't automatically mean it can't be art. Money is a real part of life, there are a lot of artist that make fantastic paintings and sell them for money. That doesn't lessen the fact that they are artist.
admiralvic  +   550d ago
While there are a lot of legitimate claims, that is not one of them.

The thing is, that element is true in all forms of "art" and shouldn't instantly make games less so. Sure, some games are designed to make a profit, but this is no different than an artist making something they think will sell, a movie being written with global appeal in mind, books featuring popular elements (like vampires at the moment) or music simply mirroring what other people are doing. In essence, there are several companies that don't care about profit and others that are made as a labor of love.

Some games, like Ico, Journey, SoTC, Deadly Premonition, BattleBlock Theater, Castle Crashers, Beyond: Two Souls, Heavy Rain and several more were not made to be "massively successful" series. A lot of these games are very weird, unique, "break the mold" and their combined sales would still probably be under the day 1 sales of Call of Duty, yet people still appreciate these games. In a lot of ways, this is how it works for other mediums too.

Some people would consider Gravity art, but consider The Avengers as not. Just like others consider The Great Gatsby a work of art, but I don't think there will ever come a day that Twilight is considered art.

Sadly this stuff is far from simple, which is why this topic is often debated.
showtimefolks  +   550d ago
MyFeetHurt

but than isn't all entertainment stuff meant to be business first and art later?

movies
music
books/comics

people will not accept video games as form of art because they are still so close minded and think video games are for kids and industry isn't that big

some of the best music around is used as sound tracks for video games.

media has just always hated on games and always will and many who pay attention to news also think the same way because they don't know any better

play journey or flower, there are no guns or ultimate goals of becoming rich and both games are IMO form of an art
Jovanian  +   550d ago
commercialized art has the capacity to be good art
MyFeetHurt  +   549d ago
There are exceptions to every rule, i havent read anything here showing me any different.

The overwhelming majority of games are produced to MAKE MONEY. The cause.

True Leonardo and Da Vinci were paid, but that wasnt the cause of their creations.

Classifying something as "art" doesnt necessarily elevate the medium. Theres much more "bad art" than "good art,"

So I am glad that GAMES ARE NOT ART.
MyFeetHurt  +   549d ago
Thats Leonardo Da Vinci, not "and"

shows how much I know :<
MyFeetHurt  +   549d ago
wikipedia also tells me his penis was 12" long,

which is why the statue of Davids junk is so small, he was showing us ourselves from his point of view. Like bills superman speech in kill bill, its how he see OUT penis.

Now these words are art ^
-Gespenst-  +   550d ago
This guy is so right, and I hope a day comes when people finally understand that.
Hicken  +   550d ago
No, he's not. He's doing that very human and very counterproductive thing called "generalizing." And on many fronts.

For one, you can't say ALL gamers are flip-flopping on the issue at hand. Not every gamer who says "Games are art!" turns around and says "They're just games!" when a critic tears into a title. In fact, I'd wager the two groups are comprised of considerably different crowds, with very little overlap.

For another, not every game is meant to be some sort of deep artistic expression. Sometimes, a game just is exactly what it is: a puzzle game, or a mindless shooter, or whatever. Even a game like GTA- the main subject- somewhat straddles the line: it's got its social commentary, its satire, but it's also meant to have a great deal of thoughtless fun included.

People only really start complaining when reviewers can't figure out that balance, themselves. We take issues with reviews that are entirely or too heavily opinion, because it doesn't give a fair representation of the game and what it attempted to do. You can't, for example, score Gears of War lowly because there isn't enough character growth or stat leveling. A game not living up to your preconceived notions is not the game's fault: you should review the game for what it is, not what you wanted to be, and reviewers frequently fail miserably at that.

And, again, the grading criteria must be adjusted on a per-game basis, as Castlevania and The Walking Dead and Assassin's Creed are all trying to do different things. The POINT of Flower is an artistic exercise, moreso than Call of Duty, at least.

But it's up to reviewers to know when to do what. This guy sounds like one of the many who does not; as a result, he's defending his position by laying the blame on a generalized crowd that can be held responsible for the controversy. Which is easier than taking a look at his own reviewing processes and seeing if there's something that, indeed, needs changing.
Wni0  +   549d ago
He isnt saying that. You are.
-Gespenst-  +   549d ago
None of that matters. If a game does something well, then fine, it can be praised for doing that well. But it doesn't change the fact that the game upon release is made part of culture. The "point" of the game can be praised for being realized well, but you can't just stop there, you have to address how it functions in culture and what ideas and messages it communicates. It's irresponsible not to. And hey, some games are even worthy of praise in that area.

You say he's "generalising a crowd" but you're are almost showing yourself to be one of those people he's criticising. One of those folks who just won't let any cultural or political criticisms be levelled at a game because for some reason it's an untouchable "piece of art". Who exactly enforces that? It's an arbitrary constraint.

Even if we criticise a game by bringing in politics and culture, we're still criticising the game on its own terms anyway; we're still responding to the content therein.

I know you're more intelligent than a lot of the users on N4G, but I think you're wrong on this one.
LoveSpuds  +   549d ago
I personally feel that anything borne from creative efforts deserves to be recognised as art.

The game at hand also doesn't need to have some deeper meaning or be moving or contain a strong story to be considered as art.

There are so many creative decisions with regards to engineering, mechanics, art, sound and a myriad of other factors that I would argue that games merit artistic consideration on many levels.

I have recently completed The Last Of Us for the fourth time (trophy mop up). The story, performances, sound design, art design, engineering and overall direction all combined to make this game the finest game on an artistic level that I have played this year.

On the other end of the story spectrum, I also completed The Puppeteer last week. This games story has nowhere near the same power as The Last of Us, however I had a smile on my face the whole time and enjoyed it almost as much as TLoU. While I could appreciate the games artistic merit on its graphics, sound and engineering front it was the art design and direction that made the game stand out.

In my opinion, if people are willing to class the garbage that passes as modern art installations these days as art, then I cannot fathom how something that demands so much creative talent as creating a game cannot be classed as art.

Just my two cents!
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techuser  +   549d ago
Games are just games like a painting is a painting. He kind of sounds like he wants to censor what the developers can make and I call that anti freedom of expression. The way he mocks the "gamers" he knows clearly is in bad taste. You can't take an asshole like that seriously.
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KingKevo  +   549d ago
He did attack Edinburgh in Scotland when he was showing Civilization for the first time... that is where Rockstar North is located. That's got to be a conspiracy for sure. Someone has an agenda. /s
ThyMagicSword  +   549d ago
Stop it already!
Games are not art in my opinion, art is subjective, for some they are "art" for others not, where is the problem? Something like GTA is not "art" in my opinion (or is it)? Maybe GTA is "art", because it takes a lot of "art" to produce such brain-waisting crap. GTA is provocative like some works of "art", haha. It arouses emotions, very dark emotions in my case, it makes me want to lay a bomb in front of the studio who produced such POS. And there is Hollywood, oh my dear friend Hollywood who is trying to tell ya that their productions are "art" and are to be taken seriously, whenever I watch Hollywood-movies I have to take ma pills and it is dangerous if I dont get ma pills, because the TV could pay the consequences (if you understand what I mean). Everything is "art" nowadays, EVERY SINGLE F()CK is ART, EVERYTHING! I shit a giant pile of poop and throw their games in it, oh ...I have created ART! F()ck off!
ifritAlkhemyst  +   549d ago
Placing a bomb in front of a studio because you didn't like a film? Then calling people who classify video-games as art fanatical? You're clearly unstable. And why would you look to Hollywood for art anyway. 100's of great films are produced every year outside of the system.

Speaking of poop as art. Google Piero Manzoni, a piece titled "Artist's Shit". Apparently someone out there disagrees with you about what is and isn't art, since the last can sold in 2008 for £97,250.
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ThyMagicSword  +   549d ago
I like playing some videogames, but I will never, NEVER take them to too seriously, one day I would be ashamed of myself if I would. Being too fanatic is never a good thing.
LoveSpuds  +   549d ago
Its not about taking things too seriously, its about enjoying a piece of work created by sometimes hundreds of supremely talented people.

Just listen to the quite amazing music in Uncharted or Halo. Look at the concept art that is produced for every game and then how that is interpreted and created by amazing artists.

Appreciating something creative is not the same as taking it too seriously.

If you ever get to complete the fantastic God of War 3 you will unlock a behind the scenes documentary about how the game was designed and made.

It is one of the best documentaries on videogames I have seen and shows just how creative these teams are and how much effort they put in.

50 years ago (and still today in some quarters) photography was the subject of these questions but I think it is more and more accepted that professional photographers are artists.

This is the same, games development is still relatively new, a few decades from now and there will not be a generation alive who has not played and experienced games and I think it is at this tipping point that games will become more widely appreciated.

Ultimately, games make people feel some emotion. Whether it is excitement, happiness, fear or elation just as some might be moved by paintings or music others are moved by the games they experience.

Even you have admitted that GTA made you feel an emotion, even if you were being a pillock about it.
ThyMagicSword  +   549d ago
"I like playing some videogames", means: I enjoy the creation of those people, but I find it difficult to see or accept them as "art", that is something videogames do not really need in my opinion, they just need to be enjoyable, most videogames labeled as "pieces of art" are barely worth playing, it is just an excuse for the lack of gameplay.

The "concept art" might be nice and everything, but the final product counts more, it is still more relevant. The problem is: most things shown in concept art does not make it in the final product, it is nice to look at it, but it has no real function at all.
ifritAlkhemyst  +   549d ago
I've been having a back and forth with thysword by PM on this very subject. He's very adamant that his opinion is correct, yet every time he tries to disprove margument he just confirms what I already said in his own writing, then continues attacking me for even suggesting such a thing.

I don't think he's very intelligent, but hes certainly opinionated.
LoveSpuds  +   549d ago
Just as with any other medium there are good examples and bad examples of games.

I did not intend to suggest that concept art was the key artistic element in games creation however I will say you are very misinformed if you think that concept art plays no role in games development.

It is vital to the visual design of the game, it is used by everyone from the texture artists to the lighting artists and the animators to help visualize what the game directors vision is for the game.

Good art design will always trump visual fidelity and FPS. I am playing Jak & Daxter at the moment and have had an absolute blast (touch of nostalgia always makes me feel good too). The character design in that game would have been as a result of concept art based on a brief, character design created by an artist.

Finally, I am not suggesting at all that you need to sit there and analyze every pixel, every note of music and every gameplay mechanic. What I am saying is that a good game is a composite of all these amazing efforts and ultimately determine whether you enjoy a game or not.

That level of creativity, that ability to create something that millions want to spend countless hours enjoying requires artists to achieve that goal.

Enjoying the game and appreciating individual elements of a game are not mutually exclusive. I guess some enjoy games on a different level to others but at the end of the day, making a good game is an art - otherwise we would all be game developers.

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