Video Games as an Art Form

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The editors of a popular American magazine called Appleton’s Journal, upon laying their eyes on an example of a new kind of art form their reaction was one of surprise and disgust, and they considered any claim of it or anything like it being called “art” as an insult to “true art” and to the skill of the masters who create “true art”. Those editors were not reacting to any video game, the year was 1878 and they were giving their honest opinion on an impressionist painting, but frankly they might have as well been talking about video games. Throughout this essay I am going to talk about why video games should be thought of as an art form and refute some of the arguments against it being an art form. Now before we continue we might as well define art because how can we determine if something is art if we don’t know what it is? Merriam Webster defines art as “ noun; something that is created with imagination and skill and that is beautiful or that expresses important ideas or feelings”. Now that is a great professional definition, but perhaps too professional. Allow me to try and humanize that definition, art is something that one or more people put their hearts and minds in to, art is something that can make the beholder, or viewer, or player feel or think something. Whether they feel awe at the beauty of the landscape of a game like Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, anger towards the men that burned down the main character’s village in Assassin’s Creed III, sadness at the death of Shadow in Sonic Adventure 2, freedom and control in games as open as Minecraft or the Grand Theft Auto series, the shock realizing the beautiful and supposedly utopian society of Columbia in Bioshock Infinite has institutionalized racism and elitism, the grea... ... middle of paper ... .... 2014. . Magazine writer arguing videogames should be considered an art form. 4. Melissinos, Chris, and Patrick O'Rourke. The Art of Video Games: From Pac-Man to Mass Effect. New York: Welcome, 2013. Print. A book on the evolution of games as an art form. 6. Davis, Noah. "Are Video Games the Next Great Art Form?" Pacific Standard. Pacific Standard, 4 June 2013. Web. 21 Feb. 2014. . A magazine providing a somewhat neutral position. 7. Bishop, Bryan. "The Verge." The Verge. The Verge, 13 June 2013. Web. 22 Feb. 2014. . Article explaining Steven Speilburg and George Lucas’ position on the topic.

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