Video games since their inception have been regarded as a juvenile form of entertainment for the millennials alongside Gen Z.
You must have faced the moments when your parents must have told you to get yourself up from the PC screen and do something else more worthwhile, while they booked seats for the night show of Housefull 2 (Chunky Pandey is my sleep paralysis demon).
This makes the gamer in me question the age-old question:
Are Video Games A Form Of Art In the Same Vein As Cinema?
Long answer short, yes, of course, video games are a form of art. But, it’s the internet, one cannot just state something as bluntly and get away with it. Thus, I shall provide reasons as to why I believe that video games should be given their due respect as a form of art:
Helps The Player Get Into The Shoes Of Their Characters (Quite Literally)
Video games, such as the Elder Scrolls Series, Witcher 3 and the Fallout series, amongst many others, let the players control every aspect of their character’s life.
Starting from what they will wear and how they will look to the choice of whether they would want to nuke an entire town to ashes or murder their employer and then nuke the town to ashes (seriously, its only fun when you nuke the town).
Extremely Detailed Environments
Video games, much like movies, create their worlds from scratch and, much like movies, are endowed with the task of making their worlds feel more organic.
In Deus Ex Human Revolution, the world of the game is one torn between the two factions of people with one supporting the need for prosthetic machinations and the other being vehemently in disgust with the very idea of it while on the other hand, in Skyrim, ants have been programmed into the game with their own behavioral patterns and AI. Talk about dedication.
Tackling Heavy Subject Matter
Like certain movies, certain video games have effectively tackled a number of social taboos and taken up their social responsibility while portraying their stories. Spec Ops The Line, is a game that effectively deals with mental illnesses and the horrors of war, thus, suffice to say it’s not for the faint-hearted.
Life is Strange is also one such game that chooses to make you go through the many social taboos that surround her.
Choices And More Choices!
Thanks to Bandersnatch, we now know how a movie with choices would look like, and where respect is due, they pulled off a fairly decent display of making the viewers feel in control.
Video games, succeeding the Goosebumps books (remember them?), provided the players with a sense of control in visual media like no other medium ever had.
Mass Effect 2 is one such game that provides the players with the best form of choices that changed the way the plot advanced itself, which in itself is not limited to the dialogue options but also, to how they play the game. And you can also flirt with your crewmates so maybe that is why it’s a 10/10.
Honestly, I would have just written an entire article concerning graphics in video games and their history, but I just couldn’t stop myself from writing about colours in video games.
Move over details and textures, the colour palette is the one aspect that matters the most, much like in the cinema.
Like the brutal ochre yellows of the scorching sun in Assassin’s Creed Origins’ Egypt to the desolate steel colours of Alien Isolation’s metallic dingy corridors to the bright neons of the peppy yet depressing world of Cyberpunk 2077, the colour palette sets the mood of it all.
Sometimes it makes the world beautiful while other times, it becomes a sad picture of what the future may turn out to be, both succeeding at what they wish to convey to you.
This marks the end of the reasons I believe that video games should be regarded as art, however, I believe I can write an entire thesis paper on this.
And honestly, if none of you believe what I said, then I would really request you to check these games out, maybe watch them on YouTube if you do not want to play them and then come at a consensus.
But, till then, video games will be art. Forever and always.
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This post is tagged under: alien isolation, assassins creed, best video games, call of duty, cyberpunk 2077, deus ex, fallout 4, mass effect, skyrim, Witcher netflix, Video games, Video games respect, Video games cinema, Video games colours, Video games visual effects