Daily Archives: April 20, 2010

Roger Ebert, videogames, and art walk into a bar

Recently, possibly out of boredom or for trolling, Roger Ebert decided to bring back his thoughts on the whole “videogames as art” topic, further cementing that, to him, in principle, games can never be art. You can read his full article here, which is in fact a faulty critique of Kellee Santiago’s TEDxUSC talk given back in March 2009. She responds back, echoing a lot my thoughts on the matter.

One could easily dismiss Ebert for being old and “not getting it,” and his tone throughout is rather that of a cranky curmudgeon, which does not help things. “No one in or out of the field has ever been able to cite a game worthy of comparison with the great poets, filmmakers, novelists and poets,” he repeats. Ouch. Maybe it’s because…he is a movie critic with movie critic friends? Seriously, talk to anyone in the videogaming business, and I’m sure they could make mention a few titles that would be hard to describe as anything but artsy. Yet it is his comments at the end of this critique that prove him beyond faulty and out of place to deem such claims, namely the ones about Flower. It’s evident he has never played the game, let alone many videogames.

Wow, that’s like me saying yoga isn’t a sport and having the world listen.

The question at the heart of this debate, now and forever, is can videogames be art?

And the answer is: of course.

Name-dropping Shadow of the Colossus, Heavy Rain, Katamari Damacy, Suikoden II, BioShock, and Myst, the harder question that continues to stomp around my brain every time this topic comes up is…how could they not be art?

Secret of the Black Pearl

I have, it seems, discovered the secret to being successful at Hexic HD, and it is this: you have to play early in the morning before you’ve had any kind of java to clear your mind and eyes from sleep. Only in this haze will you be able to form starflowers left and right until you get them fortuitously in place and create a black pearl, the mightiest of pearls, the rarest of gems, just like I did shortly before 8:00 a.m. today.

Oyster-meister (15G): Black Pearl

Trust me, I had to double-check that the ping! I had just heard had actually sounded. I’ve been attempting to unlock this Achievement for quite some time, getting frustratingly close on numerous occassions. And by close I mean one gem away. One. Gem. Away. Oh wells. Pretty glad to get this though, and now there’s really only three (out of 5 remaining) Achievements I’d like to unlock for this puzzler. One takes time, the others endurance.