Video games as surreal art

Video games are not what we traditionally think of as art, unlike their counterparts they are an interactive medium. With traditional art we are just passengers going along with what the artist has in store for us. With games it’s a bit different, we are not passengers , we are the driver, driving along a linear road. We are in the action. And there is a competitive aspect also that’s more in line with sport than art. Most people outside the gaming community won’t understand this or even entertain the idea. Surrealism isn’t just something games are good at, it’s something games can do better than movies. Better than books. Maybe even on par with the fever dreams of Salvador Dali. You can do more than just observe the absurd in Super Mario Bros. – interacting with the world peels back deeper layers of surrealism. The farther you go, the thicker the madness. Like a painting, this madness doesn’t necessarily have to follow the plot line of a novel, or the narrative of a movie. It just is. Just try and explain the plot of any surreal video game and you see what I mean. In the beginning this style wasn’t the goal of the designers but rather an compromise due to the technical limitations of the technology they were working with. It had to represent something person would be able to understand and have fun with, there was no need for hyperrealism(as we see in more modern games).

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