Animation & Game Graphic Influences
In order to successfully analyse my game media texts and understand their seemingly ‘poor’ graphics, I will need to be well versed in the related academic research in this field. Many game studies focus on the psychological or behavioural effects, and do not take into account the aesthetic and interactive appeals of games (Carr n.d. p.2). This is quite interesting to me as a non-game player, as aesthetics is something that would cause me to gravitate to a game.
Animation styles can be influenced by many outside influences, however, textbook good animation can take the player into that games world. Character and environment animations that have been carefully crafted by design teams to be a natural part of the game world, making it feel more alive and safe to explore and experience in full (Johnson 2017 p. 238). The aesthetics of a video game can improve the relationship between the player and the game, and is not just limited to an art form (Atkinson & Parasayi 2020 p. 15).
With all this in mind, the aim of this project is to discuss bad video game graphics. There is a strong link with poor aesthetics and older games – as to be expected. Modern games with retro style graphics can be a source of nostalgia for players. With the continuing success of older games despite the lust lacker graphics, nostalgia plays a huge part in this as it can be a psychological resource of the players sense of self – a digital time machine to their bygone past (Wulf et al. 2018 p.61)
The recreation of vintage games collapse the years of innovation and progress into an easy to package and consume game media text (Gaughen 2014). It is quite interesting that during the process of remaking these games, graphics can still hold true to the previous style.
Atkinson, P. and Parsayi, F. (2020) ‘Video Games and Aesthetic Contemplation’, Games and Culture. doi: 10.1177/1555412020914726.
Carr, B 2012, ‘Applying Cultural and Critical Theory to Video Game Aesthetics’, Southwestern Mass Communication Journal, vol. 27, no. 3, pp. 1–25
Gaughen, B 2014, ‘Innovation, Imitation, and the Continued Importance of Vintage Video Games’, Reconstruction: Studies in Contemporary Culture, vol. 14, no. 1, p. 2
Johnson, D 2017, ‘Worlds in and of motion: Agency and animation at the margins of video game aesthetics’, Journal of Gaming and Virtual Worlds, vol. 9, no. 3, pp. 225–241
Wulf, T., Bowman, N.D., Rieger, D., Velez, J.A. & Breuer, J. 2018, “Running Head: Video Game Nostalgia and Retro Gaming”, Media and Communication, vol. 6, no. 2, pp. 60-68.