Monday, April 19, 2010

Ebert and Games, Again?

Roger Ebert has once again attempted to tackle the whole question of videogames-as-art. I have a huge amount of respect for Ebert as a human being, and as a film critic. He is a giant of a man. However, let's be honest: He doesn't play enough videogames to judge whether they are or can be art. His analysis of games based on Kellee Santiago's talk is comparable to a non-classical-music-listener critiquing Dvorak's New World symphony, simply based on someone else's description of it.

Certainly, it is a critic's job to describe things in such a way that a reader (or listener) knows whether something is worth experiencing, first-hand. However, the audience needs an appropriate frame-of-reference to get any value from the critic's review. I don't expect people who don't play videogames to have the frame-of-reference they need to appreciate, from a critic's review, the artistic merit of a given game.

No comments: