Friday, May 27, 2011

Final Tally

The first thing I would like to add is on a discussion from last meeting, about Shell as a "shell" for the player being the reason that she is mostly inaudible. I would say that the game sets you up to be the emotional ploy and the voice of a character for the reason that Shell's inferior human intelligence would be easily attacked by Glados, while your intellect is untouchable by the video game's AI.

My biggest concern and area of thinking throughout this course has been on whether or not Portal can be truely deemed "art" in the same way that some other games are. The evidence that the game is an artistic piece of overwhelming: a complicated puzzle platformer, with every detail in minutia or on the large scale designed for a specific purpose, riddled with referencing to obscure academic and cultural phenomena. It is a thought provoking game that has been able to unintentionally capture the attention of children, adults, idiots, and geniuses, it is a game that has a hue of appropriateness and further thought.

However, I do not believe that the future generations will view Portal in the same way that our modern mind has perceived it.

To me, Portal is not much more than a well - made video game, set in the same sterile, drab space-age metal walled buildings from every other game, sauntering along fashionably, yet not enduring what will be a scrutinizing and second-guessing future for the Art in Video Games.

Why is Portal, a game that aside from the main gameplay function (shoot portals) has few true "innovations" more of a work of art than a Red Dead Redemption, with it's breakthroughs, beautiful landscapes, and capturing story? How is it more important than work being done with multiplayer on the Live Arcades, or the story flow work being done by Bethesda for the upcoming Elder Scrolls game?

To be honest, I stick by my assumption that through the years, Portal will fall by the wayside as just another very great, but not truly transcendent piece of video game art. I feel that while we may be rash to anoint this game, the true "Shakespeare" of the Video Game world will not show itself to us, but rather our descendants through time.

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