The need for Video Games

I thoroughly enjoyed Toben Grodal’s Stories for Eye, Ear, and Muscles. Grodal’s delves into our need to vicariously live through our perceptions of a stories we view and experiences, meaning since we can not experience the story for ourselves, our minds generate thoughts on how we “might act in a hypothetical world”. This hypothetical world consists of video games and films, both of which tell a story that simulates an experience. For example, in the original Super Mario Bros games, the main objective was to save the Princess in the evil castle. However, Mario faces other challenges along the way, fighting battles, riddles, collecting coins, and phasing super powers. In order for a player to succeed, he or she must “think” for Mario as Mario is strictly dependent on the player, thus acting out Mario’s “inner monologue” of fight or flight when such instances arise. These learned actions simulate our need to play as we identify and live through Mario.
The implications of the aesthetics of new technologies, such as computer games, virtual reality games, and others are the simplicities and repetition of the stories. Once you master a game, or see a movie till you are able to recite the lines along with the characters, the thrill of the experience is eliminated and replaced by the mundane feeling of familiarity. This, of course, is the reason for the need to produce hundreds of films each year and release new versions of video games. Our society becomes bored at a rapid pace and the entertainment industries thrives off of this fact alone. Without our need for constant new material, would Media be as successful as it is today?


3 Responses to “The need for Video Games”

  1. mediasaucy Says:

    I agree with you, I found the Grodal reading very enjoyable. I especially like his thoughts on what comprises a story–especially the idea that even an everyday occurrence like waking up in the morning and getting dressed or making toast constitutes a story because before (and probably during) the action involved we are plotting in our heads some kind of storyline (such as, “OK, now I will stretch and roll myself over, plant my feet on the floor. Now I will slip my feet into my slippers and stand up. Now I will hoist myself up and walk to the kitchen, approach the fridge, open it, and look for bread because I intend to make toast.” While I’m not sure all writers would agree this narrative has a clear, satisfying plot line, it does contain action, and I liked his simplistic idea that this is basically all it takes to have a story.

  2. katherineer Says:

    I definitely agree with you. I think that today, with the rise of new technologies, individuals in society have the ability to escape through virtual reality worlds. The only problem being is that once they master it they become bored and seek something else. I agree with you that this is why every year there are new movies, video games, etc. Individuals today are in a sense spoiled and need to constantly be entertained. I think this is a bad thing at times because it means that the mind is on constant overload and we can’t stop to think, and have our own experiences.

  3. christinatx Says:

    I also enjoyed reading Grodal. We do place ourselves in the stories regardless if it is video games, films, etc. I also addressed the ability to lose interest in video games due to the players abilities to become familiar with the game. We are constantly seeking something new, challenging, and unseen before.
    I have to agree with Katie’s comment. We are constantly inundated with new stimuli, stories, and technology that leave us wanting more and more.

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