- Aug 21, 2018
Flower is probably the first game I considered art at the time. Now I'd say the first game I played that was art was, well, whatever I played first, so likely Super Mario Bros.
quick edit: also forgot about Echochrome! 2008/9 was a very formative year in my thoughts on games.Fuck Dark Souls. Fuck Ghosts n Ghouls. Fuck I Wanna Be The Guy. You know what the hardest game is? The most challenging, hair-pulling, frustrating, rewarding experience in a video game ever? Machinarium's Tic-Tac-Toe minigame. Good Lord this took me a week straight to beat. That AI opponent was something else.
That aside, I absolutely adored this game. When I was a kid I played all the humungous entertainment point and click games (honorable mention to Spy Fox's Go Fish Minigame. Another impossibly difficult AI whopping your ass in a simplistic hundreds-year-old tabletop game.) and adored them... being born in '94 that was really the only experience I had with true point and click games that came out in my lifespan up until Machinarium. I would have been 14 at the time I first played this. I've loved video games since I was a kid, but I think it was thanks to Machinarium where I first truly began to think critically about video games as a medium of design, an artform, and all that hoity toity stuff. Growind up with Putt-Putt, and now seeing that same gameplay genre in something artful, tasteful, charming, mature... it was eye opening. It clicked in my head that games were on their way towards something special. Something that can't be achieved with movies, music, writing, animation, any of that... it was at the same time none of those things, and all of those things at once. I honestly don't remember much of the game outside of the stunning artwork, being able to extend your body, and tearing my hair out from fucking Tic-Tac-Toe. But Machinarium opened my eyes to the possibilities of this artform. What happens when technical limitations stopped being an immediate concern for developers, and their artistic vision could spring forth to life, unhinged. Damn. I need to play this game again.
I would have been 13 or 14 when I played Facade. To say it had a big influence on my tastes in games and how I view the medium might be an understatement