The lights are on
Little Big Planet
by Jeff Marchiafava
Like the first movies, LittleBigPlanet entrances players with the spectacle of seeing the familiar in a new light. Rather than trying to recreate our world with photorealistic graphics, the game employs bright, warm visuals that place an emphasis on texture not normally seen in digital mediums. Each object in the game is comprised of a basic material applied in creative ways: Grass is made from lush green felt, while clouds are fluffy white cotton. This simplistic representation of everyday objects feels new and familiar at the same time.
The game’s main character, Sackboy, is equally fundamental. Similar to the actors of silent film, Sackboy is the embodiment of performance art, using exaggerated body language and facial gestures to convey basic emotions. Like Buster Keaton or Charlie Chaplin, Sackboy uses slapstick humor to drive the story’s message of the importance of companionship. Without speaking a word, Sackboy has become one of the most unique and endearing characters of recent years.
LittleBigPlanet’s symbolic representation of life and world is not simply an aesthetic choice, but a function of the game’s core principle. LittleBigPlanet presents the player with a fantasy world born from imagination. This is not hyperbole, or the opening line of a fairy tale; the lands you explore are sculpted from primitive objects by their creators. The world’s inhabitants are pieced together and rigged like marionette puppets, and the music, lighting, and color palette are customized to coincide with the ambiance of the level. While this is true of all video games, the levels in LittleBigPlanet are not created by programmers, but rather storytellers, artists, and most importantly, you.
All of the levels in LBP can be recreated with an easy-to-use toolset included in the game. When I first played the game, it took me an hour or two before I realized this – I knew LBP let you create your own content, but I didn’t think levels made by players would be comparable to those created by the developers. When I saw that the user levels being shared online were just as intricate, professional, and creative, I understood that this game is more than a simple entertainment product; it’s a new creative medium.
Wherever human beings are given the creative freedom to express themselves, there is art. Most players will only ever use LBP to make simple platforming levels, just like most Hollywood directors will only make romantic comedies or action movies. But already players are using LBP in more imaginative ways, uploading their own virtual galleries to showcase their inventions. Combining graphic design, sculpture, and engineering, the artistic craftsmanship taking place in LittleBigPlanet obliterates the standard definition of what a video game is. How something that fosters so much creativity and promotes the exchange of user-made creations and ideas could not be considered art, is beyond me.
Email the author Matt Helgeson, or follow on Twitter, and Game Informer.
No doubt about it games are art. As well as a lesson Philosophy, morals and they somewhat tell you about yourself.
Video games are created by master storytellers and artist and I hope one day we'll have museums and (Respectable) award shows in their honor.
video games are without a doubt art. look at them, they are an expression of actual graphic imagery, programming brilliance, musical composition, story writing, and many other things combined into one entity that is to express something. another question, are movies art? is that picture I took with my 5 year old cell phone art? why would those things be considered "art" whilest a game can not? that is all.
Games involve 3 types of art, they involve paintings (artwork) they involve cinema (cutscenes) and music.
I think that not all video games are art. I also feel the same way about movies. I don't think Madden is art. I don't think that the Saw movies are about art either. I think it depends mostly on the motivation behind the creation of the piece
games are just as much art as moves or books. in fact, its the best form of art because it allows the user to be part of it. you cant say that for movies or books.
It's not a matter of "which" games are art, but just are they? I don't see how making a video game is any different from making a TV show, or movie. Those are considered forms of art, so why not games?
Art can be generally defined as the personal reflection of the artist. Art can also give of different meanings to different people, depending on tehir social structure or cultural belief.
Games on the other hand, are designs created for the purpose of selling. There may be personal reflections within the game, but ultimately, games are made with one thing in mind, to get money.
In this respect, games can not be considered art.
By definition art is: "The expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form," so by definition, video games are an art-form, but why is this such a hot button issue amongst gamers? Why do people actually care whether or not video games are labeled as art? Especially by someone who clearly either just doesn't like video games, or is extremely ignorant of them? Actually, I would prefer video games not to be considered an art-form. As that only gives ammo to the video game elitists who like to call common gamers entitled for "defiling" a games artistic integrity.
I must say that yes, video-games can be considered art. Art is anything that stirs up an emotional response, which several games are capable of.
There will always be a period where a new form of media, at least new in regards to older forms, is looked down upon as inferior. Remember, there was a time when cinema was not even considered a viable way to convey art, but was eventually accepted when it was completely integrated into our culture. I do think this period for videogames is slowly coming to an end, just as it did for cinema.
The answer to this question is purely perspective. To some it truly is a modern art form, to some it's purely imaginative entertainment, it's whatever you as a person would like to think it is, and that's truly the beauty of it, the fact that you can look at any way you want.
yes some games are art but as with everything not all games should be considered art, like what others have said most military shoots are not art (CoD, battlefield) but if the story is compelling and invokes strong emotions within the player such as halo for example then yes they should be considered art as just as much time and emotion is spent on a game as any novel or film.
also Y U NO TALK ABOUT PORTAL?
Ouch! I was going to read it but it was too long. So instead, I'll just give my opinion... Yes, yest they are. People spend a lot of time to get the game just how they pictured it, and that takes imagination to build a successful game like that.