When we decided on the topic of “defining a video game”, it seemed rather easy at first. If you’re even here reading this, that means you have an interest in the subject, and in this day and age, if someone told me they didn’t know what a video game was, I would be rather shocked. And then I would get to converting them into a gamer as quickly as possible, for the sake of mankind itself.
While we know what a video game is, I don’t think the definition of the term is accurate. When I looked up the word “video game” on the Internet, it was defined vaguely as a “game played by electronically manipulating images produced by a computer program on a television screen or a display screen”, but nowadays, everything is done electronically on a screen, so what does that really mean? Because I, personally, don’t consider the Solitaire you have on your computer to be a video game, nor would I consider playing chess online or checkers or any of those other kinds of games to be video games, either. And yet, based on the definition, they are as much video games as Super Mario Brothers or Halo. What about those text-based games? Are they not video games, since they involve text rather than images? Continue reading The Big Question: What Really is a Video Game?→
What about a video game actually makes a video game? This might have been an easy question to answer back in the glory days of arcades and Atari, but in our modern era of gaming it’s a question that many of would probably rather shy away. Electronic entertainment comes in so many shapes in forms these days that even determining criteria for a definition could arguably be a task unto itself. However, this amorphous state in which gaming currently resides has presented us with a wonderful opportunity! Indeed we have set before a chance to define them ourselves, and not just games in general, but differences between game and interactive movie, where RPG ends and action game begins, or even what differentiates a “casual” game from a “hardcore” game!
There’s so much to cover here, so, from today through the first week of March, we at UWG have decided to issue a challenge to our fellow game-blogging enthusiasts: define what a video game is to you! We’re asking that they be published with the hashtag #whatisagame, so that it’ll be easier to spread the word and enable readers to find participants’ posts.
What is a video game? Right now it’s exactly what you say, and we can all hardly wait to find out what that is!