Whenever I see a post about why video games should be considered art I wonder why the examples being used are more known for their narrative than their gameplay.
I know story often draws a player into a game but it is also something that is not unique or necessary to the medium. It’s a key part of film and completely integral to novels and stories.
What these don’t have but games have in abundance is play mechanics and maybe that’s what should be celebrated and the best or most influential be held above all else.
It does sound strange but we perhaps we shouldn’t be raving so much about the campaign of Halo but how gunplay and movement combined with a rechargeable health system created a player experience that pushed console gaming into a new era.
Making these things happen might sound simple but it requires teams of people to develop and refine the ideas down to code. Making that work involves skill and creativity to accomplish and that should be celebrated.
This is something that is common across all video games and levels the playing field.
In the end it would seem a shame if we couldn’t hold Geometry Wars or Pac-Man in the same esteem just because they don’t have a story to tell.