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Old 12-28-2010, 02:37 PM   #4
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Re: Games: A New Critical Approach

I like this article actually. The four principles of criticism you mention are obviously suited specifically to poetry (and I'm sure there has been a lot of debate about them as valid criteria in that field), but I like the way you tied them in to video games (with the exception of the first one, Ambiguity. Having not played those games, I don't think you explained their premise clearly, and this paragraph didn't make any sense to me). I liked the other parts though.

But rather than use those four principles, why not come up with four of your own? What would be your four criteria for judging the artistic merit of video games, as opposed to poetry?

Off the top of my head I'd go for Engagement, Tension, Progression and Expectation\Resolution. How those four are actually defined would be important, of course ;-)

Enagagement - the 'drawing in' of the player. Technical, presentational & psychological methods of doing this.

Tension - as you describe it. Immersion, mood and atmosphere. The exploration of 'theme'. Emotional response engendered by...

Progression - your progress through the in-game world, whether it be as a fully fledged character, or as the paddle in Pong. 'Gameplay'.

Resolution - how all the disparate elements are resolved. Payoff. Emotional impact or otherwise. Overall effectiveness of the game within it's genre.

Anybody got any others? :-)
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