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<  Design concepts  ~  Games are Not Rules (etc.)

Michael
Posted: Sun Apr 01, 2007 11:26 pm Reply with quote
Site Administrator Joined: 07 Jun 2002 Posts: 8065 Location: Gent, Belgium
I would argue that long-term or short-term thinking are not very interesting themes in and of themselves. But the effects of either on a human's life could be fascinating subject matter for many stories. I also don't like art that teaches me a simple thing like "you should learn how to think long-term". In fact, the art that I enjoy most tends to leave me with an appreciation of the ambiguity and complexity of human existence rather than any kind of solution or moral.
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rinku
Posted: Sun Apr 01, 2007 11:39 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 14 Sep 2005 Posts: 128 Location: Paterson, NJ
I don't think it's as simple as a solution or moral, even in chess. It's not just about "long-term thinking is better than short-term thinking", there's some complexity to it. For instance, in chess it's important to disregard obviously stupid movies, there was a study that showed that people who are better at chess actually consider fewer moves than those who are worse at it, but they considered those few alternatives in greater depth.

But I think this may be a difference of taste in art. I don't see ambiguity as inherently beautiful (except when it's necessarily ambiguous). For instance, I prefer Nietzsche's Zarathustra over Camus' The Stranger and Sartre's No Exit, even though it has a clearer moral and is less ambiguous and complex than those two and can even be called a solution.
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Michael
Posted: Mon Apr 02, 2007 12:13 am Reply with quote
Site Administrator Joined: 07 Jun 2002 Posts: 8065 Location: Gent, Belgium
I prefer Marguerite Duras's "The Lover" and Jean Baudrillard's "Fatal Strategies" over any of the books you mention. So yes, a different taste, most likely. Smile

Actually, I have always been too scared of Sartre, I was bored by Camus -of course- and I loved Zarathustra when I was 18 -of course. Nietzsche is to adolescent boys what Barbie is to young girls.
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Anomalocaris
Posted: Wed Aug 29, 2007 3:45 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 05 Jul 2007 Posts: 50 Location: the Cambrian ocean
A bit about the 'are games art?' issue. Perhaps we call 'art' those things that we are skilled enough in to appreciate (not necessarily to make), and that reach a certain level that we get all wowed about? This 'appreciation of something fine' can be in various areas: chess is not going to tell you much about human interaction just as Your Favourite Novelist is not going to tell you much about regularity in spatial patterns.

It seems that you two have (to an extent) different skills and that these guide what you call 'art' and which experience you get a deep level of meaning from. There's unfortunately no artistic merit in the Mona Lisa for a blind person (but perhaps more in Bach). Then again, it also depends on more objective characteristics of the thing; I suspect that even if you master 'jumping up and down' to the point of flow, there's less in that than in martial arts training to go call it 'art'. Though you might, really... some very ascetic brand of art; similarly, more people will call the Mona Lisa art than an abstract blue canvas with a hole in it.

I can appreciate that someone would get an artistic experience from chess; but it would require talent, training, insight. I know people who tell me there's great beauty in maths; I'm quite willing to believe that, even if I myself only glimpse a bit of that by lack of the above (which makes a hurting brain stand in the way).

Michael wrote:
I suspect that it is a lot easier to appreciate the art of games if you win rather than lose. I equally suspect that it may be possible that the winner confuses the chemical rush in his body that accompanies winning with an artistic experience.


I don't think it's only the rush of winning. Sure, in martial arts, there's satisfaction from successfully parrying an attack; however I think there's an appreciation of what can be done with a body that goes beyond personal success. Similarly, while chess by definition has the competition element, I suspect people often appreciate its intricacies quite apart from whether they win or lose. For instance, one can appreciate the beauty of a set chess puzzle, which has rules but no opponent.

And, an artistic experience is also a chemical rush in your body. That doesn't mean all chemical rushes are the same, but it makes it harder to distinguish, I think, between 'mere victory elation' and 'an artistic experience' on biochemical grounds.
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