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In Defence of Eye Candy

Screen Play: "Conventional wisdom suggests that a poor game will often feature dazzling graphics to mask substandard gameplay, and that a classic game that plays like a dream does not need to be tarted up with cutting edge graphics in order to impress. I feel that this is an extension of the ancient rivalry between art and science, which also expresses itself in the frequently-expressed opinion that poor films cover up their shortcomings with expensive special effects.

My core argument is that, when both are done well, good graphics and good game design are not rivals, struggling for a greater share of development resources. Rather, they are complementary.

Many modern games work because they create a convincing artificial world. These digital surroundings and characters attempt to elicit emotional responses from the player, such as excitement, tension, fear, sympathy, laughter, anger, or sadness. I argue that evoking such emotions works best when the world is as real as current technology allows it to be."

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