How a Game Designer Outgrew Games In an interesting opinion piece over at GameSetWatch, designer Brice Morrison expounds on why it is that he 'outgrew' games — even though he's a designer. It's not exactly treading any new ground (any 'why is gaming an immature medium?' essay traverses the same ground), but it's an interesting perspective from someone who has built a career on designing games — games that he says he's outgrown. What do we need more of? Boring games (sort of):
Who cares if games are played by an older audience? That doesn’t guarantee that it will become a truly respectable medium. Ian Bogost, professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology, wrote that games will not be truly expected as a medium until there are more boring games. Only when games are mundane enough to be accepted as a method to, say, teach us how to drive safely, will games have truly arrived. While the goal isn’t to create boring games, the goal is to approach a world and a public perception where boring games are not outlandish. So how do we get there? One step at a time. Games like My Weight Loss Coach, or independent titles such as Passage are slowly, one by one, changing the public’s conception of games. As new titles appear that push the envelope of what people, like my mother, think of as games, we approach an environment where emotional and intellectual discourse is possible.
I don't really agree with him on a number of levels — and don't really like conflating 'serious purpose' with 'maturity,' for it's possible to have wildly entertaining things that are also extremely mature in their handling of a variety of stiuations — but it's one perspective on the issue. I'm also not at all convinced a game like My Weight Loss Coach is changing perspectives on games, per se — many people I know don't make the connection between that sort of 'game' and, say, an RPG or FPS. Why A Game Designer Outgrew Video Games [GameSetWatch]