A Novel Approach to Comic Videogames

I don’t need to tell you that one or two people have been playing and talking about Pokémon Go recently. Today, as it’s released here in Ireland, I came across a discussion online about whether people were going to play it (apparently my poor old phone isn’t sufficiently advanced enough to handle it, so I won’t be playing any time soon). What didn’t surprise me was that so many people were saying that they couldn’t believe that adults would play it, and that they themselves were far too mature for such childish pursuits.

I can understand they might feel like that based on the cartoonish trappings of the Pokémon games. But I also think it’s because they are just that: games. Or it’s because they’re called games. Modern videogames are much more technically sophisticated compared to the ones I grew up in, and there are a huge variety of them: from simple games for children to repetitive annual blockbusters, to small, mature adult-oriented indie games.

To me, they’re just as legitimate as other forms of entertainment, and yet people will always see them as childish pursuits simply because of the game part of videogame.

It reminds me of comic books. Yes, many of them are aimed at younger readers, but there’s still quite a variety of them out there, catering for many different tastes. And yet, it’s hard for some to take them seriously, because of the word comic. Even though very few of them are funny anymore! At the same time, I’m not fond of the word graphic novel. It feels like it’s for embarrassed about reading comics and are too desperate for people to know how mature they are.

It’s a pity that certain words can make us prejudiced so much, but perhaps there’s hope. Over time, the literal meaning of certain words can be forgotten once they become closely associated with a particular concept. After novels aren’t so novel anymore, but we have no problem using the word. Maybe in the the far future people will compare new entertainments with the prestige of comic books and videogames.

17 thoughts on “A Novel Approach to Comic Videogames

  1. I am a massive fan of the Punisher Max series. Some would say that I was childish reading a comic, but if they looked at this comic the would see the graphic violence, language, adult situations and nudity and think twice!

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  2. I read an article today about this game where the main purpose is data mining everyone’s information because they know millions will play it, and then your info is sold to third party companies. I won’t even turn on my location on my phone – so they say it will be easier for them to provide other places for me to go and things to buy. There is so much of that now that I don’t know if it is pointless to try to stop it – but you know everyone is watching when every search you do about anything – the ads for it follow you everywhere on the web no matter where you go. But apparently there is great promise for data mining with this new pokemon Go because so much of it is off the web and it knows every move you make. That is a little unnerving.

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    • Yeah, I’ve heard that about Pokémon GO, and though I hope it’s not true of it, I wouldn’t be too surprised. I amazed of how easy it is for programs and apps to get information from each other. I’m always amazed when Facebook or another website suggest something for me based on my emails!

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      • That is why I never turn my location on. Facebook always encourages you to let everyone know where you are and restaurants you eat in etc and some people use it all the time. Fb is the worst for data mining but I at least try to slow it down if I can.

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  3. As a comic artist, I’m acutely aware of this problem. Many people still think that comics are for children or adolescents, even if this is completely false and lots of artists, like new, create stories aimed at adults. I can only try my best to help readers overcome those prejudice, but I think it’s going to get tougher and tougher, especially with the infinite amount of awful and childish webcomics out there…

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