This is what we need to strive for. Experiences that are tossed into the wind and time and heart in the same way that a short poem is written. Loved your game.
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That very same people that you say can't imagine anything "beyond a game in it's most primitive, literal form" are proof of this phenomena. There is a thing such as "two different conceptions, and comments like the one we have seen here are proof of that; it is observable. I would say that what doesn't exist is not "two conceptions", but two concepts. A concept, of course, makes the mind instantly think of structures and specifiicity, that is why I used "conceptions", to be a little more vague, because, of course, attempting to put every possible manifestation of videogames into two bags it's restrictive.
That being said, it's impossible not to notice some kind of divide. The very fact that the syntagma "indie game" exists, implies the logical fact that there is such a thing as "indie games" and, on the other side, "not-indie games". I don't, obviously, identify either one with a more "discursive" aspect just like that, but I think that indie games tend to gravitate towards that notions even more (with that I mean, a stronger emphasis on a given concept, a discourse, than on any other possible element).
My idea, simply put, is that people that make indie games generally try to make games that means something, that reveal aspects of ourselves (the subject) and the world that makes both feel renewed. I'm not trying to diminish any possible manifestation of art in videogames; i'm simply celebrating all of it's vast array of posibilities (triple A games of course can also do that, but I don't think it's the case the majority of times, and that is why I work with generalisations and not absolutes).
Thanks a lot! And I completely agree. Videogames as art, as any form of reaching for meaning, thought and knowledge, should be enough to justify itself.
I loved The Things We Lost In The Flood, and I think it serves as a perfect example of what games can and should be: the best representation of meaning, given shape in the digital era. I will be checking out your future works!
I actually spent a lot of time thinking about this. While I understand your frustration, I believe it's related to a mayor problem that videogames as a genre are facing today: there is clearly a breach between two different conceptions of videogames.
What you're asking for, probably, won't be easily found on Itch.io, a community for people that abide to different ideas of what a videogame should be.
That being said, a game, in it's most traditional sense, has some clear characteristics down to it's core: rules, a condition of winning, and one of losing. (in between, and particularly, in videogames, you could think of gameplay, graphics, etc).
The main issue, I think, is that we are using the same word for two very different things. The Things We Lost in The Flood, as most games on Itch, is meant to be highly discursive, and that is reflected on all of it's aspects. You are asking for a different kind of media; one, that, sadly, is understandably linked to the one that is mostly featured here. My hope for the future is that these aspiring new media shall be analized for what it is, and not for what it "should" be, given that, obviously, it's roots are buried in the notion of traditional "videogames" (and, more importantly, "games").
When I was a kid, I used to watch The Twilight Zone and The Outer Limits with my dad. I watched all the remakes, but the original Zone with Serling will always be the best for me. I felt that you managed to capture that feeling of despair and otherwordlyness.
Pd: By playing the first 5 minutes, I thought that it was an adaptation of sorts of Nightmare at 20.000ft. I was gladly surprised :)