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The 20 Video Games The MoMA Considers To Be Art

In 2010, the late, great film critic Roger Ebert wrote the following words on his blog, a long, yet considered, article about video games and their standing as art, and the definition of art itself:

“I remain convinced that in principle, video games cannot be art. Perhaps it is foolish of me to say "never"... Let me just say that no video gamer now living will survive long enough to experience the medium as an art form."

It was a bold statement, from a guy whose opinion is well respected. And it sparked a vigorous debate on forums and in mainstream publications about the relationship between video games and art: Were video games art? If not, could they ever aspire to be?

Ebert made the argument that a video game could never be art based on its very premise: if it is a game, he said, that also means that it can be won, and art is something that must be experienced.
But in 2012, The Museum of Modern Art in Manhattan selected 14 games as exemplary examples of art, specifically in the field of “Interactive Design.”

Each of the entries was evaluated for its artistic merits based on the following categories: Behavior (the emotions and reactions that were elicited), Aesthetics (the visual goals of the game), Space (the limits of the game, as determined by coding), and Time (the length of the game, and how this relate to its experience). An additional six games were added in 2013, bringing the total to 20.

The museum plans to add more video games in the near future, but this is an excellent start to what will be an extensive collection.

Here are the 20 Video Games That The MoMA Considers Art. Which ones do you agree with? Which ones have you played? Which ones would you add?

Click to start the list

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