The Algorithm of Videogames and the Internet

Wow this article was confusing. I may not have the prior knowledge to fully follow all of Manovich’s points, but one point that did stick was the one on video games. Highly academic of me I know. I Manovick has the beginnings of  a decent argument when it comes to narrative masking the algorithm of games. He is correct that because of the story we often overlook how the game itself functions. This a true point and a bizarre point. It seems obvious that the narrative is suppose to take our primary attention. I don’t think that it takes away from the actual experience of the game itself at all.

I don’t really see his point in this section though as he more just states facts. Yes, there are different kinds of games, that is why we have created different genres for them. Manovich goes on about the differences between algorithms, narrative games and logic games, but doesn’t really say why. The differences seem fairly straightforward. To add onto that I think he actually simplifies games down too much to fit his groups. Plenty of games have little mini games built into them. One example is hacking in fallout 4. The hacking system is a very straightforward word creating game that would fit into Manovich’s algorithm category. But fallout as a whole is a very different style of game.

Manovich could’ve made the argument that we often overlook the important aspect of games themselves. He could’ve said that video games are not as free and expressive as we like to think they are. That in reality we are following these codes and simply tricking ourselves into thinking we have some sort of freedom through the context of the narrative. That is a perfectly valid point that he starts to make, but never fully says. Instead he jumps to the next topic. I understand he wasn’t focused on this per say but I felt like he did this in many other sections where he’d simply start a point and move onto the next without creating any closure.



Posted from My blog by Patrick H.