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gorillapaws's avatar

What video game(s) would you recommend to someone who didn't understand that video games can be art?

Asked by gorillapaws (30457points) November 10th, 2023
18 responses
“Great Question” (6points)

In my opinions, some video games have ascended to the level of storytelling that’s every bit as serious and meaningful as literature, cinema or other mediums of art and can involve mentally rigorous challenges on par with chess. What games would you suggest to someone who thinks of video games as simply childish wastes of time (though to-be-fair most of them are—especially mobile games). So which games would you suggest people who don’t “get it” to try that might change their perspective on the medium.

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ragingloli's avatar

Cyberpunk 2077
Horizon Zero Dawn
Death Stranding
Deus Ex Human Revolution
Metal Gear Solid V
Witcher 3
Baldur’s Gate 3
Divinity: Original Sin 2
Ghost of Tsushima
Persona 5

Those are the ones in my Steam library, and that I have played, that I think would qualify.

Zaku's avatar

It depends on the interests and tastes of the person, and/or what aspect I were trying to show.

I don’t think Chess is on par with literature, and some game-skeptics wouldn’t tend to think any game is very worthwhile, though for people who think Chess is worthwhile, then, oh:

Archon / Archon II (chess-like, but with more complexity, and also real-time combat between units that meet).

Space Empires IV Gold, Dominions V, War In Russia, Tigers on the Prowl, Combat Mission, Point of Attack 2 (i.e. any good war or strategy game, which is thousands of times more complex than Chess, and IMO more interesting, some of which can actually teach real-world combat tactics, etc.)

To show what interactive story-like gameplay can be like:

Space Station 13 and Space Station 14 and Among Us (which apparently stole their idea and had more popular success)

EVE Online

Arma 3

DCS (some videos of interesting cooperative multiplayer games)

Dwarf Fortress (read the forums full of years of stories of the shenanigans . . . O M G)

Interesting creative games:


Heat Signature

Shelter 2


The King’s Bird




The Longing



Manifold Garden

Untitled Goose Game

Nebulous: Fleet Command

Wolf Quest


KNOWITALL's avatar

Uncharted is visually stunning. There are a lot.

Blackwater_Park's avatar

1. “The last of us.” It’s an epic story and if you like the series, you will be enthralled with the game. This is my linear- cut scene type recommendation. The last of us part 2 is just as engaging.

2. I have two platformer recommendations: “Braid” and “Super Meat Boy.” Braid has some deep meanings that will not be apparent. It’s brilliant. Super meat boy is just fun.

3. “Minecraft” is a sandbox game you simply have to experience to understand. It’s very relaxing. Build that cabin, kick back and chill. Just get it done before dark.

4. Open-world games are simply amazing these days. It’s hard not to recommend “Elden Ring”, if you can get past the difficulty, you will find extensive lore and stories all over the expansive map to explore. George R.R. Martin put the world-building together for this.

5. Quirky sim games are fun, I’d recommend “Catherine” here. There are some odd dreamtime puzzles too.

6. Choose your adventure movie type games are a bit of a niche, I recommend “The Quarry” “Heavy rain” is also an honorable mention.

As a bonus you need to check out “Journey” I won’t describe it. you have to do that yourself.

flutherother's avatar

Journey is a game that can affect you in a similar way to traditional works of art. It is a slow, absorbing dreamy sort of game like a meditation.

Blackwater_Park's avatar

I forgot to mention Gran Turismo. While not exactly art, the recent version is a straight-up bonafide racing simulator. My BIL who is a racing enthusiast has an extensive sim setup that uses Gran Turismo as the engine. It’s completely nuts.

jonsblond's avatar

Sky: Children of the Light is visually stunning with beautiful music.

kritiper's avatar


gorillapaws's avatar

These are my picks, for what it’s worth (focused on games that may be compelling to non-gamers):

The Unfinished Swan
The Witness
Deliver Us The Moon
The Magic Circle
The Last of Us
Mass Effect

Samantha4One's avatar

Assassin’s creed, all games in the series.

MrGrimm888's avatar

Fortune magazine has an interesting article about how Elon Musk plays video games.

In the article Musk talks about the enjoyment of such activities, literally proclaiming that the “art,” was part of the experience.

It’s a quick read. It may aid your cause @gorillapaws .
I realized that this likely stemmed from a thread in Social. However. I thought I might add this on this thread as potentially more relevant to the question.
I hope I didn’t go too far off subject @gorillapaws . Obviously you can flag this if you want.

Just to offer a often forgotten title, I have to mention the game ”Riven”. It was on Dreamcast and probably PC. It’s not a fast paced game AT ALL, and is more of a extreme puzzle. But due to the slow game play it was able to put lots of focus into graphics. There are fantastic landscapes, massive machines, and otherworldly creatures that constantly had many players just stop and stare sometimes…

☆Video games would not be possible, without many mediums and styles of art.

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SABOTEUR's avatar

What album would you buy someone who doesn’t understand that rap can be art?

What cruise would you take someone on who doesn’t understand that cruises can be enjoyable?

What gun would you buy for someone who doesn’t understand firearms can be handled safely?

Questions like this are well intentioned but it just might be possible a person, for whatever reason, doesn’t share the same values or is just not interested.

Blackwater_Park's avatar

Games are so advanced compared to the past you can’t make comparisons like this anymore. That’s like comparing a ride on a pontoon in the lake to a full-service cruise or someone beating a rhythm on a hollow log with sticks to a classical orchestra.

gorillapaws's avatar

I think this scene is one of the most incredibly well written and voice acted ever in a video game. I’ve seen it many times now and I still get chills.

Blackwater_Park's avatar

I hate that the the last of us 2 got so much ant-woke backlash, not deserved in any way. That game is one of the greatest in recent years.

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