Discord and Rhyme: Playing By the Rules

There are thousands of games on the shelves, both board- and video-type, for which the apparent creative motivation can be outlined by one simple principle: the developers valued the experience of making the game more than they valued the experience of playing it. There's nothing wrong with game design as a vehicle for expression, as long as the particular designer seeking expression isn't a compulsive, controlling wank, but whenever the focus in any field shifts towards process as an end unto itself, the final result - whether game, film, novel, or pot of chili - often winds up smelling like a seat cushion in a cross-country Greyhound bus. Without air conditioning. In August.

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