Thursday, June 10, 2010

I don't get it again!

You know, folks who talk about how video games all have horrid stories all seem to play GTA and never Final Fantasy or Persona. That's like expecting Madden 2010 to be Shakespeare. And yes, some games don't have a story or a bad one. Ciivlization 4 and My Tribe are have almost no story- occasionally I make something up, and someone is probably writing about how the silly mini stories people make up- "Gandhi continues his reign of terror with his helicopter gunships over the Ethiopian landscape"- is either making us smarter or dumber or rewriting our brains somehow.

As far as bad stories, I love Ranch Rush 2, and I don't really care about the excuse plot about food pills, and in Diner Town Tycoon, whatever Grub Burger has going on with Chemical X...not interested. Although I'm sure someone could write a thesis on the themes of big business and contamination in casual games, that's not the point of the game.

And that's not a bad thing. When I watch Chopped or The Rachael Maddow Show- I'm not looking for a show that is great art. I'm not looking at Shrek or Forgetting Sarah Marshall for deathless themes, and so it is with video games. Not every single piece of entertainment has to strike a great blow for art, truth and justice. That doesn't give a pass for misogyny and racism in art, but if a game is merely entertaining, merely a pleasant way to pass the time- so be it.

I have no idea why Mario and pals are go kart racing on rainbows and through castles, and I don't need to.



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