Are Video Games More Fun If They're Totally Mindless?
Let's face it: during the early days of video games, they were all mindless. Pong? Pac-Man? Yeah, we knew what they were; electronic toys that required reflexes and a bit of luck, and that's about it.
But as time has gone on, game developers have been given better technology. And with that technology comes the ability to create compelling storylines and interesting characters. It also gives designers the opportunity to provide us with innovative gameplay that tests both our problem-solving skills and our dexterity. Still, depending on your definition of "entertainment," it might just be that the truly mindless titles are the most fun.
Of course, "fun" is another insanely subjective term. But think about it for a second- in order to relax, our bodies often require that we turn off our brains. For many, gaming is like any other hobby; it's about relaxing above all else. Sure, there are challenges to conquer and you're bound to run across other emotions, but for the most part, it's not supposed to be a chore. Therefore, some will maintain that if you're taxing your brain for any purpose whatsoever, even pure entertainment begins to resemble...well, work. And you never want to come home from work and do more work.
Personally, I'm not buying this. Mindless games are a lot like mindless movies to me, in that they can be entertaining from time to time, but they don't go that extra mile to offer me fulfillment. Perhaps it's a bad idea to say that only stupid people find fulfillment in mindless entertainment, and I'm not here to judge, but it does seem like the less intellectually-minded flock to the brainless forms of entertainment. There's still plenty of that in gaming but then again, maybe this is the perfect venue for "mindless."
Well, what do you think?
1/16/2012 9:18:00 PM Ben Dutka