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Games as art. (Gaming)

by INSANEdrive, ಥ_ಥ | f(ಠ‿↼)z | ᕕ( ᐛ )ᕗ| ¯\_(ツ)_/¯, Monday, September 12, 2022, 18:25 (19 days ago) @ cheapLEY

I’ve been playing The Last of Us Part 1 recently. And, of course, we just finished It Takes Two. Playing the two rattled some not-fully-formed thoughts loose.

Lots of folks uphold TLOU as the pinnacle of games as art. I won’t debate that (or even disagree with that). But it is also the pinnacle example of sort of movie as a game. The things people talk about for TLOU is the presentation, the characters, the story. While I truly love the gameplay of The Last of Us, the things I always see being talked about as the art part of the game are things that could have been a movie. While I won’t dive into the additive (and even essential to the experience) nature of the gameplay, it’s interesting when compared to It Takes Two.

Because It Takes Two is the exact opposite, but I would hold it up as Games-as-Art just as much as The Last of Us. The story is fine, maybe good even, but it’s not the thing that makes the game what it is. It Takes Two is truly one of the best video games I’ve ever played, full stop, no caveats. It’s as close to a perfect game as I’ve ever experienced. It’s just fun. Moving the characters around feels good. The sprint, the jump, the air dash, even the different abilities we’re given all feel damn near perfect to control. The game never seems to run out of ideas (save for the garden at the end, which I think was a fairly weak area in almost every regard). It’s constantly putting players in new environments with new abilities, and they’re all fun. The mini games are all fun, bite sized things, and it’s neat to suddenly be competing with the person you have to cooperate with during the normal gameplay. The writing is funny in a way that most games aren’t, even when they’re trying to be. I sort of laughed when this game won a bunch of game of the year awards, but I was wrong. It Takes Two is Art, based purely on how fun it is as a video game to be played. It’s not thought-provoking like The Last of Us, it’s just a fun video game that feels magical in a way that not many do anymore.

I wish I was better at articulating this stuff, because I think it’s a fascinating comparison. And I cannot quite find the words to describe how good I think It Takes Two is.

To add to this, may I present a Movie that felt like a Video Game? With its seemingly omnipresent "One Take" camera, 1917 is increasingly good. As in, the more I consider it, the more it becomes one of my favorite movies I've yet seen. Because, thanks to the camera work and all the rest, I get to -safely- live a day over a century away and reflect on its considerations to the barbarity of... well, of war, but to THAT AGE of war. Sword and horse tactics ignorantly pushed into, unbeknownst to them, a new age of war. Of ranged meat grinding, trench warfare, mud, and rats, and the constant feaster of all that dammed mix in your boots. And... about people, as always. With 2nd and 3rd viewings, I know who the characters are. Their levels of experience, of good heart, and perhaps even how naive they may be to the whole in the situation imposed. And I see little hints to such character in the beginning that is oft missed on a first viewing, followed then by that life in a day. Stories left unknown in conclusion, as, such it life.
And it's all thanks to this movies rigorously planned for "omnipresent one-shot" camera work. It's cinematographic art.

Why do I think this is in parity with what you say, cheapLEY?

Even though it is a presumption from me, as I've yet to play either The Last of Us or It Takes Two, I think the words you don't know how to describe are summed up as; it's all about how it has been presented. As previously stated, the film 1917 is designed to appear to have no cuts. And all of its quality is better for it. Not just the quality of its sum, but the delivery of its consumption. Be it (ever metaphorically) the tact of its bow, or the tasteful compartmentalization in each act, the pace (I presume) allows for a steady stream of appreciation to the quality on display. This allows, in turn, the appreciation of the whole of the art, whatever it may be. And I think, according to your description, The Last of Us and It Takes Two have the same exceptional delivery of their content.

This is what, I think, you had not the words/vernacular to say. 

Anyway, here! Literally, "The First 9 Minutes of 1917".
Take a look for yourself! Let me know if my presumption is correct, cheapLEY.


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