Jaffe Blasts ‘Art’ Games

Motormouth Twisted Metal creator David Jaffe has criticised media outlets who heap praise on ‘art’ games (that will be us then).

“Just because there’s wind blowing and a minimal soundtrack and vast open spaces to explore and a slow pace doesn’t mean that the game you are playing is art,” said Jaffe.

‘Real art and genuinely important work doesn’t need to continually toot its own horn. The very nature of something being artistic and important means that- except in rare cases- its power is evident without anyone having to tell you that it is,’ continued the wise old sage.

David describes games as ‘smoke and mirrors bullshit’ and that websites and magazines that sing the praises of ‘artful’ games have a detrimental effect.


‘Publisher cash gets taken away from traditional games,’ he claims.

Well if it means more of Journey, Flower, Limbo, Last Guardian and Heavy Rain and less of Call Of Duty, Twisted Metal and Kane & Lynch then I doubt you’ll find many of the TSA staff complaining.

Sorry David, on your own on this one.

Source: Criminal Crackdown



  1. So called arty games are a welcomed relief after the annual gush that is COD + fifa

    • There are alternatives.. and no its not PES and Battlefield

  2. seems very closed to different ideas then generic titles and genres. his loss i suppose

  3. I’d much rather have an arty game then a stupid ‘ride around with guns on w/e vehicle takes your fancy dressed as a stupid clown’ game

    • I kind of agree with him. But I don’t know if I’m interpreting it as how means for me to.

      Just because a game has “wind blowing and a minimal soundtrack and vast open spaces to explore and a slow pace,” it isn’t automatically art, though it doesn’t necessarily make it not art. Just as the opposite of that description isn’t automatically art. All he’s saying is that a game doesn’t need to smack you in the face with the whole arty vibe in order to be art.

  4. He posted this on Twitter not 15 minutes before you posted this article.
    “Why oh why can’t motherfuckers read? I never said games can’t be art. This isn’t even ABOUT ‘are games art’.”
    Seems some sites jumped the gun on this one.

    • No, he’s saying games can try to be art, but they turn out more like macaroni glued to a paper plate.

      Personally I think he’s wrong, but oh well…

  5. What an absolute utter twat this guy has been. To hell with ‘traditional’ games, I want games that have a brillant and emotional story, an awe-inspiring artistic merit to it, incredible gameplay or even all of the above. Less of COD and FIFA, more of Flower, LBP and ICO, thank you very much.

  6. Lol I do love Mr Jaffe and his blunt statements :D I must admit I don’t usually like arty-farty games like Flower, etc but I do love Limbo and Heavy Rain.

  7. You guys are really missing the point on this one, and are blindly having a go at a man for what news websites have entirely misinterpreted. Again, I point you to his twitter in a post in which he responds to Jim Sterling sympathising with him in regards to websites misinterpreting what he is saying.

    ” I hear you! It really sucks though because I do think the exploration of how interactivity can evoke more emotions- and be able to communicate more complex, even ‘adult’ ideas- than they currently do is a noble and valid one. I don’t know if it’s possible via interactivity but I think there’s been enough evidence that that it may be possible that it certainly merits continued experimentation and exploration. And I’ve been very vocal about my admiration and love for a few of the ‘art’ games in the past that – to me-HAVE managed to eek out (if not bust out) a win. Flower comes to mind, for certain. But it really is like arguing politics or religion at this point with a large number of folks: the people who are already sold on the idea that ‘games are/can be important’ simply attack you for questioning the dogma and they don’t even stop to think that perhaps your very questioning is not an insult or attack on what they say they love and want, but rather a potentially valuable stepping stone to make ‘art’ games even more powerful and successful.”

    You really need to stop having a go at him and calling him a twat and a tool when you clearly haven’t the foggiest what the man is actually talking about.

    • I think he’s a bit of a tool but not because of this. Also, did he even say the above? (in the article, not your comment)

      Either way, Flower is gooooood-stuff! 8-)

      • Not in the article, but the man clearly felt the need to tell people what he actually meant, not the misinterpretations that media outlets are spewing on the internet.

    • He has subsequently backtracked and tried to more adequately explain what he means but the original blog post and his subsequent explanations are fairly different.
      For what it’s worth, I think there’s a valid point in there. He just has trouble getting it out in a way that doesn’t seem a bit ignorant.

      • I agree, I just don’t think it’s fair to call the man a tool and a twat when people don’t have a clue what he actually is talking about. His first post sounded ignorant yes, but his explanations clearly highlight what he actually thinks.

      • indeed, there’s very seldom any need for personal insults.

    • It seems like quite a few people missed his point. Maybe he should phrase his thoughts in a better way so that he doesn’t have to call other people motherf***ers on his Twitter account afterwards.

  8. I like a nice artistic game, but I like a good, mindless action game as well. I personally would quite miss COD!

  9. I’m on his side.
    ‘Arty’ games aren’t necessarily good.
    You need to be a good game first, after that you can make it ‘art.’
    Just because something is dressed up as cerebral shouldn’t mean it is a good game.
    A good game should speak for itself.

  10. Finally, someone speaks some sense!

    I HATE games that are pushed as being arty for the sake of being arty and are simply pretencious ‘games’ (I use game lightly). Games such as The Last Guardian are brilliant examples of a game that could be percieved as art but aren’t shoved down your throats as being ‘art’. Art is simply an expression of an emotion so in that sense all games are art. Don’t tell me your game is better because its ‘art’, thats like saying a song is better than others because it has a chorus. Its a moot point.

    I’m not saying that some games aren’t more impressively styled or consciously thought off from an art perspective, but I just hate pretenciousness.

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