Del: Hey, Jeff. Define art.
Del: What is art to you? If you had to write a paper on it. Or tell someone what I’m asking you for a test.
Jeff: A creative process that, ah–
Del: So it’s a process or a result of a process?
Jeff: I’d say both. Like music, writing, and drawing. Whatever. I’d say it’s art as it’s being made and once it is finished.
Del: Would you say what we do, at work, (we both work at Whole Foods, a grocery store) is art?
Jeff: No. No, that’s not art, but I’m trying to think why that isn’t and what a musician does it– Can I look up the definition?
Del: No. What I’m getting at is would you say video games are art?
Jeff: Yeah. I would. No matter how bad it is. Yeah, it’s art. I’d say art comes from your imagination. It’s a creation. Something you’ve made.
Del: So let’s say you know someone that does’t think games are art. They think music, painting, movies, etc are, but not games. To them a game is just a toy. They’re like LEGOs or action figures. Just something to play with, but certainly not art. What game would you tell them to play in hopes of getting them to think maybe they’re wrong or reconsider their stance?
Jeff: Ah, the first game that comes to mind is Okami, but I never played it. It just seems–from what I’ve seen–very artistic.
Del: Let’s stick with something you’ve played.
Jeff: Ok, then I’d say Journey or Flower. Those both do a lot with very little. There’s no talking, it’s just visuals and music. But with just that you end up with very strong emotions.
Del: I’d agree with Journey. That’s a game a lot of people seem to reference when art and video games come up. I never played Flower so I can’t comment on that one. I played Flow, but I wouldn’t use that to try and change someone’s mind about games being art.
[While we chat a bit more on the subject I go to see if The Pirate Bay is up; as of my writing this it was not]
Jeff: Still down?
Del: Seems so. The other day we were talking about Dishonored again and you said you’d already pre-ordered it. You also told me that in the terms and conditions that it’s actually ok to put the game on two systems? That surprised me, a lot. I mean, you could pay the $60, or whatever, for a new game. Go to your buddy’s place, tell him that for $40 you’ll put the game on his PS3 and you’ve now paid just $20 for the game and your pal has saved $20. That doesn’t seem very ‘Sony-like’ at all to me. I guess you could keep doing it, I don’t think there anything to stop you from putting your games on ten systems, or a hundred. At what point does copying a game become piracy?
Jeff: I guess it’d be personal.
Jeff: Well yeah. Like for someone it might be two times, since that’s what Sony has said is ok. But, I mean, other than… it’s kind of, just whatever. If they don’t want it to happen or for things to be abused then they should do a better job of plugging those holes. Like a technical glitch. If there’s a glitch in a game, like being able to beat The Legend of Zelda: OoT in 20min, then so be it. Someone is going to find it if they want to.
Del: So to you there is no such thing as piracy. It’s just an error that publishers, movie studios, music labels and the like need to fix. Couldn’t you then say that if a bank didn’t want to be robbed then it shouldn’t allow robbers in?
Del: Huh. Well, ok. That does make sense in a way. It’s like… Spock logical to a fault, I dig it. Next week we can talk about Dishonored since we’ll have been able to play it a bit. Do you think it’ll be as good as, say, Deus Ex: Human Revolution in that you’ll want to play it a few times? Maybe stealth once and all out murderer the next or maybe another time kind of in between? You can beat it without killing anyone, did you know that?
Jeff: I didn’t. But I can tell you that on my first time I’ll certainly be a mass murderer. I’ll try stealth for a minute and then just kill everyone. That’s why I’m so bad at the MGS games.