Blog: Games, Art, Interaction and the role of Epiphany


Just read This Essay on Gamasutra which posits that all Art is a subset of Games, as the artist is conveying a meaning via a set of rules in the medium of their choice. It’s a very interesting concept presented in a well written essay.

I am ruminating on the high level Games premise, which leads me to the question of ‘at what point does Interaction become Game‘? I have always felt that Games were a subset of Interaction. Interaction being activity requiring the Player to take some kind of discrete action which triggers a reaction that updates the world and our understanding of it. I consider that to be the fundamental Interactive loop.

Activities such as pondering a painting or poem, do not require a discrete action and do not typically change the world (leaving the quantum observation theories aside), but they DO update our understanding/pattern libraries.

So…

Is ART a human authored presentation (as opposed to a natural wonder) that creates a change in our personal pattern library, especially for patterns that relate to our understanding of the real world? I am going to use the term Epiphany for that particular kind of worldview changing pattern update.

And therefore… Any Interaction (Games included) can be Art if the Player has an Epiphany as a result of the Interaction?

The more I think about this, the more I think the Epiphany has been the missing piece of the Games as Art question. Especially as the experience of such will be completely subjective and unique to each Player.