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Grumpy Gurevitz: We Play Games

Critical Gamer writes: I call myself a gamer. You probably do too. Indeed, we have taken that term – which has traditionally meant ‘nerd’ – and turned it into something which is more self assertive, something we can be proud of; as we are proud of our community and our common interests. Yet, does the word ‘game’ best reflect spending an hour with Modern Warfare, or Uncharted?

There is clearly a problem with the word game, which affects not only how we look at our own past-time but also how those outside our medium view and value it. What is a game? It’s something one plays. It’s not even a sport, simply an activity that involves play. In much the same way that children or young monkeys play, so we also play. Most likely, society tends to perceive playing as an infantile activity. To be fair, ask any actor what they are doing on stage and they will say they are ‘playing’ a certain character. Indeed it’s by playing out a part and narrative that we can experience certain emotions and situations, in an environment which is not real, allowing us to analyse and confront feelings and decisions which we either might never experience in reality or never have the time to properly consider.

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