Roger Ebert Was Addicted to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

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Roger Ebert Was Addicted to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Roger Ebert's recent opinions on videogames may have been shaped by a poor experience with reptiles and the power of pizza.

Film critic Roger Ebert recently took a trip into his past by digging up footage of when he and Gene Siskel used to do holiday gift guides. One particular clip may reveal why Ebert has had negative opinions on the capabilities of videogames as a form of artistic expression.

In Siskel and Ebert's 1989 holiday gift guide, the pair talked up the Nintendo Entertainment System and its attempt to reach into the adult market. After fumbling around in Tecmo Bowl (I'd hate to see their troubles with a controller that has more than two buttons), Ebert divulged that he bought his own NES along with the system's first version of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles back in the day.

You might expect the sometimes fuddy-duddy to have despised the NES from the outset, but according to his comments, he became addicted. Around the 4 minute mark in the accompanying video, Ebert says: "After about a week of this I would find that every time I had a spare moment, or every time I came home, I was in front of the set playing with these mutant turtles, and it got to the point where it was making me quite unhappy because I was so obsessed with it. I finally unplugged the machine and I said 'that's it for Nintendo' because it seems to me that it's so hypnotic, and so repetitive, that it's just not good for my mental health."

Everything has become clear. Ebert doesn't hate games, he just has terrible memories of one of the most challenging titles on the NES. I was never able to beat Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, were you? Dealing with those horrifying swimming levels and having to survive in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Party Wagon was enough to drive any man, or kid, insane. If Ebert had played Final Fantasy or The Legend of Zelda instead, he may have grown up to have very different opinions on the value of videogames. I wonder if he has flashbacks every time he eats pizza, too?

Source: Roger Ebert's Blog, via Kotaku

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This explains everything! Wonder when Roger Ebert will actually TRY a videogame again before declaring it devoid of art. Perferably Mass effect. Can you honestly say that game isn´t art in some way?

Good for him. He sure now has every credential to diss out videogames in their present form still.

Stop reporting this idiot, he has no relevance to the gaming industry.....please.

The plot thickens.

awesomeClaw:
Perferably Mass effect. Can you honestly say that game isn´t art in some way?

Defiantly, Mass Effect is "art" is the same way any Hollywood blockbuster is art. The usual candidates for "Games are art" are games like Shadow of the Colossus, The Path, Flower and The Void.

D_987:

awesomeClaw:
Perferably Mass effect. Can you honestly say that game isn´t art in some way?

Defiantly, Mass Effect is "art" is the same way any Hollywood blockbuster is art. The usual candidates for "Games are art" are games like Shadow of the Colossus, The Path, Flower and The Void.

I would have picked different titles, but, D_987 is right, Claw.

D_987:

awesomeClaw:
Perferably Mass effect. Can you honestly say that game isn´t art in some way?

Defiantly, Mass Effect is "art" is the same way any Hollywood blockbuster is art. The usual candidates for "Games are art" are games like Shadow of the Colossus, The Path, Flower and The Void.

what about Prince of Persia(2008) or Final Fantasy XIII or Metal Gear Solid 4?

Gene "...The kids say that they play 2 hours a night or 1 hour a night,that's a hell of a lot of time." Ha ha ha.

Oh if he was only around to see things now.

ForgottenPr0digy:
what about Prince of Persia(2008) or Final Fantasy XIII or Metal Gear Solid 4?

No chance...

Prince of Persia had some nice graphics, but what kind of artistic statement in there within the game? None.

I can tell you're just trying to annoy me with the FFXIII comment =P, but like PoP, it has nice presentation, but no substance - what artistic message has been conveyed within that game?

As for MGS4...there's a message there, but it's not an artistic one, there's no interpretation, no subtlety - much like Mass Effect it has all the artistic value of any blockbuster film - which is to say, very little.

He can't eat pizza, or anything else for that matter. ;_;

Oh that TMNT game was evil I had it on the C64 (I think, bit vague memory wise), that god damn water level was as far as I got. I hated that water level, I hated it.

He shoulda tried the arcade game.

I reckon he is partly wrong about video games being artistic cause some of them have some pretty artistic merits to them now days, that teenage mutant ninja turtle game is an old game and didn't have the capabilities some games these days have.

Tom Goldman:

Everything has become clear. Ebert doesn't hate games, he just has terrible memories of one of the most challenging titles on the NES. I was never able to beat Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, were you? Dealing with those horrifying swimming levels and having to survive in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Party Wagon was enough to drive any man, or kid, insane.

Ha! That is exactly what I thought when I first read the headline, Mr. Goldman! Cookie to you!

I'm not sure where this idea that Roger Ebert HATES games came from. He doesn't understand them, sure, and he applies an unrelated mindset in which he is an expert (movies) in judging them, but he did afterwards apologize and pretty much admit that he doesn't "get" games. I certainly wouldn't lump him in with the Jack Thompson "games have no merits at all and are a danger to everyone" crowd.

Still, if I had my druthers, I'd bring over a handful of atypical games (Shadow of the Colossus, The Path, Amnesia: Dark Descent) to his house and give him a walkthrough of basic gameplay mechanics as he played, so he could concentrate on what the games had to "say". As many moviegoers look to him for wisdom on movies, he should look to someone knowledgable about video games if he really wants to understand this (relatively) new medium.

Odd, he stated once he never played video games. Now this? Intriguing...

For those unaware of how bad the first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles game was, here is the review from AVGN (known as the Angry Nintendo Nerd back then;WARNING! The video includes an abundance of swearing):

I guess I can't really blame Ebert for having a bad first impression. It is a shame he didn't play Super Mario Bros. instead.

The dam level...
*shudders from the memories*

D_987:

ForgottenPr0digy:
what about Prince of Persia(2008) or Final Fantasy XIII or Metal Gear Solid 4?

No chance...

Prince of Persia had some nice graphics, but what kind of artistic statement in there within the game? None.

I can tell you're just trying to annoy me with the FFXIII comment =P, but like PoP, it has nice presentation, but no substance - what artistic message has been conveyed within that game?

As for MGS4...there's a message there, but it's not an artistic one, there's no interpretation, no subtlety - much like Mass Effect it has all the artistic value of any blockbuster film - which is to say, very little.

*Don't want to start flame wars etc.*

MGS4 not art? You're kidding, yes? I just got done on my second playthrough a couple of days ago (got the game for Christmas) and it was the first title that will come to mind whenever i think of Art+Games in the future.

I have been playing the series for about 12 years, played each game a ridiculous amount of times over, when I finally got to the credits of MGS4 I was just completely shocked by it.

I felt like I grew with the characters, in every game there have been fantastic messages about War, Politics and the human race in general. It's all directly inspired from Kojima's own inspirations. MGS4 in my opinion has absolutely peaked in the series with amazing writing, keeping you on the edge of your seat while it draws you in, emotionally engaged as well as gameplay-wise, with so many small moments that would go unnoticed until multiple playthroughs. He wrapped everything up in such a great way that made me shed tears for one of the only ever times in a game (the other was MGS3's ending). There was a ridiculous amount of subtlety in the game in every element, but it isn't art? (Fair enough, a lot of people wouldn't have the attachments but I feel even a non-fan would have to appreciate it).

Just like every other game I've always considered art, one would have to be stupid to not consider them such. It gives the player an emotional experience and it's why I consider games the ultimate form of art (I'm also a lifelong film maker, with games always inspiring me).

There is more to art than simply looking stunning everybody, it can't even be described, just like every creative medium has something amazing to draw you in, more than just escapism.

Roger Ebert should lay off addicting games.

Still my favourite reviewer though.

Trogdor1138:
-snip-

Metal Gear Solid 4 has cutscenes that go on for over an hour.

Regardless of whether or not you think it's art, I'd say it's more like a movie than a video game. So even if it does have artistic value, that point is moot as it's barely a game and more of a movie.

As for Ebert, he's a movie critic. I don't really care what he says about games in general.

He's entitled to his own opinion on games. I'm more concerned with his health, to be honest.

Trogdor1138:

MGS4 not art? ... it was the first title that will come to mind whenever i think of Art+Games in the future.

This comment makes me immediately think you've not played any games of any real artistic relevance...[or at least, what I would consider such].

I have been playing the series for about 12 years, played each game a ridiculous amount of times over ... I felt like I grew with the characters

Considering you'd just claimed you'd been playing the series for 12 years you probably did. That says more to do with your own situation than the game itself.

in every game there have been fantastic messages about War, Politics and the human race in general.

So? There're moral dilemmas and concepts such as these in Mass Effect, however little. The difference between Mass Effect and MGS4 to something like The Void or The Path is that these games require the player to question the gaming experience itself, to unravel the message and interpret it how they choose. This isn't the case in MGS4, or in Mass Effect - it's written out, clear as day, what said message is - and that does not add artistic value, it takes it away; of course what "art" is in subjective in of itself, but of your concept of "art" is just "it has a message'...well you must consider a lot of pieces of media art.

MGS4 in my opinion has absolutely peaked in the series with amazing writing

Funny, because that's one thing I've not heard about MGS4 [and no I'm not talking about Zero Punctuation].

keeping you on the edge of your seat while it draws you in, emotionally engaged as well as gameplay-wise

The whole "12 years" element comes to mind again, of course, if you've been playing the series for so long, you'll be emotionally engaged, but as a stand-alone product the game won't hold that level of emotion. Again, the game is a shooter, how does that progress the games overall message on "war and politics" exactly? It doesn't, because it's made entirely for entertainment purposes, not for artistic means. It makes a good game [if you\re into that sort of thing] but not a good artistic statement.

with so many small moments that would go unnoticed until multiple playthroughs.

What does this have to do with the "games are art" argument again?

There was a ridiculous amount of subtlety in the game in every element, but it isn't art? (Fair enough, a lot of people wouldn't have the attachments but I feel even a non-fan would have to appreciate it).

I like the way you defeat your own argument in this quote. Regardless, I disagree there's a lot of "subtlety" in each element, you'll have to prove it to me if that's true rather than just stating it as fact...

Just like every other game I've always considered art, one would have to be stupid to not consider them such.

"You're stupid if you disagree with me" - as stated earlier, art is subjective. However, I do beleive you have a very "simple-minded" concept of artistic value based on this post, you haven't really described why MGS is "art" to you at all - beyond claiming it's "subtle" about its concepts, which I highly disagree with - and you're yet to prove.

It gives the player an emotional experience and it's why I consider games the ultimate form of art (I'm also a lifelong film maker, with games always inspiring me).

You know what game gave me an emotional experience? Lost Odyssey. Do I think the game is art? No. The short stories within the game are another matter, but the game itself isn't art, just because it can provide me with emotion doesn't mean it holds strong artistic merit, much like MGS it shows little subtlety with its core themes and message, with no interpretation or hidden concepts to be found.

There is more to art than simply looking stunning everybody ... more than just escapism.

You summed up exactly why MGS isn't art...

D_987:
[quote="Trogdor1138" post="7.254150.9475608"]

-Snip- (hope that comes out okay?)

Thanks for the reply, I always like to hear what others think on topics like these. I'm in no mood to debate this further as I feel there won't be much change by the end if it turns into a big back and forward. Hope it's okay? (Also tired, it's 4:30am over here).

I agree with you on a lot of points actually, also I recommend to you "Another World" which is one of my favourite games as something I would probably always put forward first in the "games are art" case. I'd like to see Ebert try out some gaming, I always respected him as a critic even if I disagreed with a lot of his reviews (hey, opinions are what makes it interesting) but was surprised by his comments on gaming.

Anyways, will be watching this thread to see what people have to say.

Once ya get past the swimming there is one tunnel you go through with those unbalancedly strong scrolls at the end. When you exit the level, hop back in, grab it again, exit repeat till ya have 255 then just breeze through the game. Something like four hits from them kill shredder. Yeah if you do that after the swimming level the game is amazingly broken.
Ahh the good ol days.

Mostly those old games had a one path solve and once you found it they game was pretty easy. But interesting the naysayer himself was hooked one of the more challenging of the nintendhard collection.

Addicted to that piece of crap? That (one of the two C64 versions) was one of my larger hard-earned money regrets of childhood. It suckered you in with a hot license and a basically sound concept (the early area IS kinda fun) and then proceeded to throw dick moves at you until you gave up. Let's see if I remember my problems with it:

1) Linear path enforced by having instakills roaming the world map in places you weren't supposed to go yet, including one set that vanished if you circled a building and then tried enter it but killed you dead if you dared enter without doing the loop. There was nothing behind the building, no monsters OR powerups. So extra world map walking and path memorization for no good reason! The second world map added to this by giving you x missiles and x+10 roadblocks that needed to be destroyed with missiles. Better pick the right ones to unlock the right parts of the map!
2) Really finicky jumps that punished you excessively for missing them.
3) Best power ups in impossible places. Fight your way through a horde of monsters to get the sole invulnerability powerup on the level... that you burn through getting back out through the same horde of RESPAWNING monsters. And that entire branch was optional and you wouldn't have done it if not for the obvious powerup visible from the opening.
4) Get extra life, lose game. Maybe it was just me, but after I rescued a kidnapped turtle (aka got an extra life) on the third or fourth level, I was trapped. No exit to the rescue area, so the only way to continue was to AVOID rescuing your fellow turtles and thus skip the extra life! On your next game, anyway, because this one is unwinnable. Good luck starting over!
5) While you're fighting Bebop, Rocksteady is guarding April, and when you win Rocksteady just runs off with her. Problem is, Rocksteady is attackable and killable! If you do, then kill Bebop, then the game pulls a dick move just because you got clever and broke a non-obvious sequence. April sits there and responds to being rescued by damaging you whenever you touch her (and she's right in front of the exit) until you're out of health or quit playing.

The Rogue Wolf:
Still, if I had my druthers, I'd bring over a handful of atypical games (Shadow of the Colossus, The Path, Amnesia: Dark Descent) to his house and give him a walkthrough of basic gameplay mechanics as he played, so he could concentrate on what the games had to "say". As many moviegoers look to him for wisdom on movies, he should look to someone knowledgable about video games if he really wants to understand this (relatively) new medium.

Amnesia?... we want to enlight him, not scare the shit out of him... I sure do when I play Amnesia...

I agree with you, although I don't know wich games to bring to someone who isn't used to the most basic gameplay for any game.

Definitively Shadow of the Colossus is an amazing game and it's my only incentive to buy a PS3 (for the HD version), but the game itself uses 3D space, a concept most of us got used to in baby steps on the N64/PSOne, making him play Shadow of the Colossus is like giving someone a motorcycle when he doesn't even know how to ride a bicycle.

Even worse if we try to make him play Amnesia, same case, he isn't used to 3D spaces and much less if it's on first person perspective and it would only be a bad experience for him if he's scared shitless to even move (I sure do when I play Amnesia).

The Path... well, maybe that game can appeal to him as it isn't revolved around action, we can only hope he finds it "artistic".

D_987:

ForgottenPr0digy:
what about Prince of Persia(2008) or Final Fantasy XIII or Metal Gear Solid 4?

No chance...

Prince of Persia had some nice graphics, but what kind of artistic statement in there within the game? None.

I can tell you're just trying to annoy me with the FFXIII comment =P, but like PoP, it has nice presentation, but no substance - what artistic message has been conveyed within that game?

As for MGS4...there's a message there, but it's not an artistic one, there's no interpretation, no subtlety - much like Mass Effect it has all the artistic value of any blockbuster film - which is to say, very little.

Not sure if I agree here. For one art can be good and bad while still being art. Bad art is still art, it just blows chips.

One problem I think today is that people seem to confuse something being art with it being pretentious, and oftentimes depressing. Truthfully I think 99% of the things considered art today are *really* bad art, and what's more wind up aping each other to a crazy degree when you get down to it. A lot of the things that are not respected as artwork, simply seem to ironically be a bit more subtle about it.

To put things into perspective, writing is a form of art, typically the idea is to get people to think about issues in a differant way. An example of this is a lot of military science fiction that focuses heavily on engagement doctrine and how wars are fought. By being works of fantasy issues like fighting wars properly, and exterminating entire cultures and species can be examined by divorcing humanity from the equasion. Plenty of people will get right behind the efforts of Space Marines to destroy a fanatical alien race, that wants to wipe out or enslave humanity for esoteric religious or philsophical reasons. What a lot of people might not realize is that many of those aliens are based on real world cultures, some of which existed in the past, some of which exist today. In political debates here, you will notice people really freak out about me advocating total war against the cultures in The Middle East, on the other hand if you took all the basic facts, made the cultures in question aliens, and the US a group of Space Marines who might have less redeeming features than we actually have today you'd be screaming your support for them. Another good example is when you look at books like "Honor Harrington" where you have battle cruisers duking it out, duels, assasinations, and marines in powered armor fighting each other... however at the same time it's making some rather crushing statements about modern political systems, what peoples believe they stand for compared to what they actually are, and similar things, with some rather unsubtle analogies to various communist/socialist takeovers ranging from the French revolution, to those of the Russians and Chinese.

The point of that lead in is that you should take a look at Mass Effect from a somewhat differant perspective for example. Sure, it seems like a brainless Hollywood blockbuster, but sometime sit down and actually look at differant races like the Volus, what was done to the Krogan, and other issues, you'll find some interesting parallels to the real world and things that have happened. The only problem I have with Mass Effect is that it's alignment system ultimatly defines certain things as good or evil, which actually holds it back a lot in some of it's most profound moments. Of course at the same time I can also argue that the best elements of this sort do not involve any desicians Commander Shepard makes directly. I could probably write a pretty substantial post on the Volus alone.

In comparison when I look at games praised as artwork they seem to ultimatly be pretentious works of angst that seem like the artistic equivilennt of something a stoned 16 year old Emo would jot down in his notebook. Life sucks, loss of innocence sucks, even surrounded by people we can (and usually will) find ourselves effectively in isolation, nobody really understands each other, nothing we do ever matters, someone else is always better than you... etc. All of these things can produce good artwork, but generally speaking they don't nowadays because there is increasingly little that is upbeat enough to compare it to. It also ceases to be profound when it's what everyone is saying. I don't even think most of these games say it paticularly well in their own way, getting an undue amount of attention simply by being games.

Those are my thoughts at any rate. Truthfully I think between "Rule Of Rose", "Silent Hill", and "Shadow Of The Colossus" I think the darkness of humanity and the human conditon has been expressed about as well as it could be at the moment. Games like "The Path" and others are just pretentious arthouse poseurs that have very little new to say, and have been hanging on the coattails of what others have been done.

This is not to say that these games aren't art, it's just horrible art. The few games that are doing anything worthwhile rarely get credit because they aren't pretentious enough. I suppose if Commander Shepard put shoe polish in his/her hair and sat on the bridge of the Normandy cutting between missions while rambling about how nothing mattered, people would suddenly think the game was artistic. ;P

D_987:

awesomeClaw:
Perferably Mass effect. Can you honestly say that game isn´t art in some way?

Defiantly, Mass Effect is "art" is the same way any Hollywood blockbuster is art. The usual candidates for "Games are art" are games like Shadow of the Colossus, The Path, Flower and The Void.

And doesn't Ebert not like Sci-Fi?

Maybe I'm confusing him with someone else...

Therumancer:
In comparison when I look at games praised as artwork they seem to ultimatly be pretentious works of angst that seem like the artistic equivilennt of something a stoned 16 year old Emo would jot down in his notebook. Life sucks, loss of innocence sucks, even surrounded by people we can (and usually will) find ourselves effectively in isolation, nobody really understands each other, nothing we do ever matters, someone else is always better than you etc ... Games like "The Path" and others are just pretentious arthouse poseurs that have very little new to say, and have been hanging on the coattails of what others have been done.

First and foremost, again your concept of "art", from this post appears extremely simple-minded in my opinion. You ultimately claim Mass Effect is "art" because "many of those aliens are based on real world cultures" and thus if we look at Mass Effect in another light it could be implied that we could see those we support art those we fear in reality - or something like that that, the paragraph was to long for the point I feel it was ultimately trying to make [regarding Mass Effect], or another point was lost inside said wall of text...which, again, doesn't really offer any interpretation or allow the player to determine the meaning for themselves - it's there - clear as day - and we shouldn't be claiming that kind of message to be "good art" [as you insist on calling it].

You then proceed to insult games like "The Path", as derivative, whilst simultaneously praising Shadow of the Colossus for using the same theme, just earlier. Yet Shadow of the Colossus uses themes Shakespeare discussed in his plays; does that mean it has no artistic value, as it's derivative? No, that's a foolish way to look at any form of media, we shouldn't be judging games on the message they're trying to deliver [to determine if they are art or not] but the way they deliver that message. So far all you've said to try and claim The Path is not "art" is that it holds a theme you don't like...that's a very childish manner with which to look at a media and determine what is art, and what isn't...

"Everything has become clear. Ebert doesn't hate games, he just has terrible memories of one of the most challenging titles on the NES. I was never able to beat Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, were you? Dealing with those horrifying swimming levels and having to survive in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Party Wagon was enough to drive any man, or kid, insane. If Ebert had played Final Fantasy or The Legend of Zelda instead, he may have grown up to have very different opinions on the value of videogames. I wonder if he has flashbacks every time he eats pizza, too?"

I never played TMNT for NES, although I did have the game for SNES, but I have a hard time believing it was more difficult than the original Zelda..... Final Fantasy for that matter wasn't very easy either, though it didn't require much hand-eye coordination. I also found it funny how they thought 2 hours, or even 1 hour of play a night was a lot. What's the average TV time for an American per day? 3 hours or something?

An exciting time it was indeed. My question is why is this just surfacing now?

Arsen:
The dam level...
*shudders from the memories*

No! NOOOOOOOOOOOO! THE. HORROR. Too...too many...there are too many bombs...not...not enough time! Make it STOP!

Oh, this game was hard. I don't remember ever being angry at it (I was just a kid having fun), but I do remember dying. A lot.

awesomeClaw:
This explains everything! Wonder when Roger Ebert will actually TRY a videogame again before declaring it devoid of art. Perferably Mass effect. Can you honestly say that game isn´t art in some way?

BUT EET HAZ TEH SEX AND IZ BAD 4 THE CHILDREN!

Okay, Ebert would never say that. (Specifically.) But as much as I respect the man, if he's allowing this sort of experience to cloud his doubt, that's kind of unfortunate.

Oh hey, Mass Effect debate. Let's jump in, shall we?

Most of the arguments against Mass Effect seem to go thus the following; it's structured like a Blockbuster, and the various issues it presents are "obvious" and thus "uninteresting." I've seen NOTHING else; no clarification, no specifics. The person(s?) defending the games(s?) haven't provided either of these as well. So, let's tackle the both of the issues in depth, shall we?

First of all, the idea, possible fact that it's structured, and appears depth-wise on the surface, as a "Blockbuster" movie. As for the structure of the game, I agree, but don't see why this is a distinct problem. It has that sort of pacing and beats because that's simply what works for this type of game. It's a sci-fi cowboy game by inherit plot structure, and although it might not be your cup of tea, you can't really fault it for taking that idea all the way. As for weather this makes it loose depth, I have to disagree. Not because the plot of the game is terribly innovative or different; as I mentioned above, it's a standard sci-fi cowboy story. But the fact that it's, well, Mass Effect. It has an enormous back story, universe, etc. it has more depth than most Blockbusters simply out of the enormous girth of specific stuff it contains. As for how good all that stuff is, and because I'm internally stalled on this point, let's go onto the next one.

The points are obvious, and thus lose artistic value. Wait, what? Although there is a certain artistic merit to making vague but pointed statements that require some thinking to "get," that's not what Mass Effect is about. Mass Effect certainly isn't subtle with it's issues, but that would contradict what it often actually tries to do; namely, presenting a series of morally grey DECISIONS (Because it IS a game) to the player, and giving them collateral information about and as a result of those decisions. The player does not gain introspection or philosophical ideas through discovering it directly, but by being forced to make a hard decision and looking at why you made it and why it was the better choice. In my mind, a far more interesting way to do things for games, an active art form. Let's take another example of a game with blatant ideas considered to have high artistic merit; Portal. What about the constant themes of love, fear, escape, obsessiveness, and so on are not blatantly very near to told to you? And it doesn't have the moral greyness or decision making of Mass Effect; so where's the depth? Because Portal is emotionally stimulating, and through looking at why it is, how that affects you, and so on, it gains depth. Equally blatant in theme, even actively less interactive than Mass Effect and other games, still has depth regardless. Mass Effect works differently than other "high art" games, sure. The question I ask is, why does it matter?

I probably worded that sub-par, and the conversation will probably have evolved past this by the time I post it, but yeah.

Why does everyone care what Rob Ebert thinks about games anyway.
Sure he's a Veteran in the realm of movies, but the fuss surrounding his opinion on games just seems like trivial insecurity.

Actually, I would argue that Mass Effect is a good argument for Games are an artform. Certainly a better argument than, say, Halo or the Call of Duty games.

Also, I notice people keep saying Mass Effect is a weak argument because it's like a Blockbuster movie... umm... look who we're talking about. Roger fucking Ebert, possibly THE most well known movie critic alive. You think a game like Mass Effect would be the PERFECT place to start for him since he is, you know, a movie critic and all.

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