Tuesday, August 12, 2003

Fun and Games
Fun is Fine is an article about the philosophy of game design. The basic statement of the article is that it's OK to make fun games, because that is what games are about. On his way to this, David Kennerly says something I have been saying and writing for a long time (although in my not-yet-published thesis, so I am not saying that he got that from me): "Narratives, which includes most films, and games differ dramatically, because games don’t tell stories, players tell stories."

And that leads us back to the old narrativity discussions. While I like Kennerly's article, and he says something basic about the pleasure of games, the references are mostly from writings on the practice of designing games, not on the philosophy of it. While many of us are tempted to ignore the academic narrativity discussions around computer games, they are so well-documented that its absence in references is almost glaring. If what Kennerly wants to write about is the philosophy and not the technique, I would expect a little more about game theory from a philosophical, cultural and academic position. But as a short defense of the fun in games, it's good!

By way of Grand Text Auto.

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