On War

The Observer has published an interesting debate on whether video games or film best depict the realities of war. Of course, the point that Migual Sicart almost makes is that games have the ability to affect the player through an intimate player-avatar relationship that doesn’t exist in movies.

Does that make them better? Debates like this irk me. If someone asked me whether theater or cinema was the superior medium for conveying the realities of love, I would be no more able to provide an answer. Games are good at forcing the player to recognize things about themselves and abstract concept through their own identification with a situation. Movies are good at eliciting empathetic reaction and allowing a greater level of observation.

Neither is better than the other. We should stop trying to apply artificial superlatives to narrative media.