[MUD-Dev] RE:

Joe Andrieu jandrieu at caltech.edu
Sat Nov 3 01:00:01 New Zealand Daylight Time 2001

From: J Todd Coleman
> From: "Joe Andrieu" <jandrieu at caltech.edu>

>> The Sims has already shown that you can be a bit more creative
>> and reach a HUGE audience. I think you'll find more of this as
>> the basis for interactive products as gaming moves to more
>> mainstream customers. With that shift, I think we'll also see a
>> greater focus on mature treatment of the fundamentals--as you
>> say, sex & violence contextualized into love, yearning, jealousy,
>> pride, coming of age, patriotism, whatever.

> Isn't "Sims: Hot Date" soon to be released?

Yes, but let's contrast that with Leisure Suit Larry or even
TombRaider.  Sims Hot Date is very contextualized stuff.  Not just
jokes about trying to get laid or T&A for its own sake as in the
previous examples.

> Don't get me wrong -- I think it's both noble and appropriate to
> look for other ways to engage the audience beyond sex and
> violence... I would love to see "Tony Hawk Pro Skater Arena" the
> MMOG, for instance.  But at the same time, I can't go so far as to
> believe that the reason so many games are based on sex and
> violence is simply because of a whim on the behalf of the
> publishers and developers.  Content creation companies will, over
> time, have a tendency to continue doing the things that work well.
> (If they don't they go out of business.  I think of it as
> "evolution," where marketing and product as your survival traits.)
> You can't ignore the fact that a very large portion of the mass
> market WANTS to engage in entertainment tied to sex and violence.
> I don't think it's fair to try and put the burden entirely on the
> content creators.

I think I wasn't clear. I'm not saying that sex and violence are
bad. I'm concurring with Raph's statement that shallow sex and
violence is lame.  S&V are core driving factors in most if not all
that we do. The more sophisticated and rewarding media and art
contextualize that primal factor into love and jealousy and
patriotism and rebellion and yearning and the like. In other words,
they connect the audience with the human experience, not just our
base motivations.

Vulgar sex is crude. Non-vulgar sex is art.

Graphic sex is pornography. Graphic violence is pornography.
Contextualized sex and violence, graphic or not, can be art.  Hence
the never-ending debate about the borderline between pornography and

My point is that Interactive Entertainment could use a little more
art and less graphic vulgarity.  Who really needs to see the blood
gush out of a monster when you kill it?


Joe Andrieu
Realtime Drama

joe at andrieu.net
+1 (626) 395-8045

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