Prêt-à-jouer and Videogame Couture

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Thinking videogames through other media can reframe our expectations of what games can do, challenge our design habits, and reconfigure our critical vocabularies. Videogames have long aspired to match cinema, so what if we set aside that lens for a moment and instead think about videogames as dance, fashion, or architecture? We might ask: What does choreographic play look like? What does it mean to dwell in a videogame space? Is there such a thing as videogame couture or prêt-à-jouer—‘off the rack’ games, ready-to-play? What if we forgo our misguided search for the Citizen Kane of videogames and instead aim to find the foxtrot, the Chanel, or the Sistine Chapel of videogames? Or better still, make them.
My talk proposes answers to these and similar questions, linking up the histories and structures of media otherwise overlooked in videogame criticism and design. And I will hopefully entice attendees to ignore the question ‘Are videogames art?’ in favor of more provocative questions, like ‘Are videogames fashion?’

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Prêt-à-jouer and Videogame Couture

  1. 1. Prêt-à-Jouer & Videogame Couture Nathan Altice @circuitlions metopal.com
  2. 2. F*CK NO
  3. 3. “But the problem with thinking about videogames in the way we think about art is, of course, that a videogame is not so disinterested; it's a business, and in the end, more often than not, the commercial concerns win out over the aesthetic ones…”
  4. 4. “But the problem with thinking about videogames in the way we think about art is, fashion of course, that a videogame is not so fashion disinterested; it's a business, and in the end, more often than not, the commercial concerns win out over the aesthetic ones…” Holly Brubach, A Dedicated Follower of Fashion (1992)
  5. 5. BRIDGING THE GAP
  6. 6. A new idea. A new look. A new sex. A new pair of underwear. Andy Warhol
  7. 7. HEIDEGGER CITATION
  8. 8. “...But at the first discouraging word, fashion reverts to being a business, and the writer who doesn't promote it is castigated for her disloyalty; there is simply too much money at stake.” Holly Brubach, A Dedicated Follower of Fashion (1992)
  9. 9. FUCK N*
  10. 10. NICE HEELS
  11. 11. FU*K YEAH
  12. 12. Thank You Nathan Altice @circuitlions metopal.com

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