Disliking Good Games

How can you dislike good games? Does not compute. Obviously, there are certain subjective criteria (e.g. acknowledging a game’s quality, but not playing it because the aesthetic seriously puts you off), but if a game is good and you acknowledge that, what’s to stop you from liking it?

I don’t view quality as being something consistent with my own preferences. If game quality isn’t something outside of myself, then my ideology is just me trying to enforce my preferences on other people.

Games are characterized by aspects other than their depth. And these things can be things that I or we don’t individually find appealing. In the case of Persona 4 Arena and Blazblue, I dislike that they’re arc sys fighting games that aren’t Guilty Gear. I dislike the style of Blazblue, and can’t find any character in it that I have any particular attraction to. For Persona 4 arena, I dislike its relative simplicity, even though it is technically more complex than a game like SF2. Turn based single player games I cannot stand the long action-less hours of sitting around commanding things to happen. RTS I don’t like the lack of kinaesthetic sensation due to the indirect nature of control over units. Bayonetta I’m turned off by the massive movelist that is largely similar, even though it seems to have a high level of complexity. There are probably a few other games I am forgetting.

I admit these reasons are perhaps a bit shallow, a bit unfair, a bit defined by my personal tastes and expectations, so I recognize that these games are good, even if I do not personally enjoy them much.

If I don’t dislike good games, then my philosophy kinda falls apart, y’know, otherwise I’m just saying that the games I like are good and rationalizing why they’re good to justify my taste. For any sort of concrete or objective theory to make sense, it needs to be something outside myself. We have to recognize that there are facets of games that can be evaluated and shared between people, that our experiences are not so individual that it is hopeless to label any sort of change as progression.

Otherwise we’re right back at the Sokal Affair and the part of history literally named The Science Wars. I know there’s something outside myself with art. I know that there is a thing called quality, and that producing certain effects takes a type of knowledge or technical skill that people do not possess by default. If these claims are not true, then my reason to pursue art is dead.

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