[-empyre-] conceptual art vs the craft of games

Sorry for the belatedness of my response! I wrote a long email in my 
browser then lost it :(

I wanted to reflect on something Brody raised earlier:

"There seems to be 
misconception that shoving topical content into a poorly crafted game 
world with a lack interesting game flow is somehow useful. In the end 
are left with a mix of poor art and poor engineering that reeks of so 
much 90's media art. I am guilty of this myself. At the same time, I 
just on "political games" panel with Harvey Smith, one the creators of 
Deus Ex, and he is on the other end of the spectrum. He spoke 
passionately about embedding political metaphor into that popular 
mainstream game. In the end, even though those intentions are 
by virtuoso game design and solid graphics, it falls flat."

This relates to how I feel about our work on Escape From Woomera. We 
set out to prove a concept but we never had the resources to do it. Our 
concept was that real-life serious issues can be addressed by a game, 
without sacrificing gameplay. We wanted to prove something to our peers
(ie professional game developers and hardcore gamers) Sure, we've made 
a prototype but all it's meant is that our colleagues look up for five 
minutes and say "interesting idea, i wonder if it could be done". Just 
like the way a 30 second film trailer doesn't prove anything. But if we 
had had the opportunity to make a proper game we would have had our 
chance to influence the world of game development. As everyone knows, 
pretty much any joe shmoe can come up with a great game concept, the 
true art of game development however is to turn that concept into a 

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