Take heed video game writers! Pixel Bubble puts out a call for thoughtful, intelligent games criticism that I 100% support.
Art is a conversation, and no matter whether that conversation is stimulating or trite it cannot be had alone. If video games are ever going to be taken seriously as an art form it’s not enough to make artistically valid games. There has to be an intelligent audience ready and willing to engage the material on a sophisticated level.
Finishing up Tom Bissell’s Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter the other day left me somewhat hollow and empty, not because the book was bad, but because I was saddened that there were so few pieces of literature like it in existence. Extra Lives is a collection of critical essays penned by a war reporter who just happens to also be a severe video game addict; unlike a lot of games writing, Extra Lives is extremely well-written, thought-provoking, and sincere. Bissell, as wordy and educated as he seems, is just like the average hardcore gamer in the sense that he’s sunk hundreds of hours into a library containing games as diverse as Grand Theft Auto, Mass Effect, Eternal Sonata, and Braid, and he alone seems to be moved to actually dissect these games in a meaningful way and explore what it is about them that…
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