Under the tutelage of his stern and minatory great-aunt, Throgmorton demonstrates the merchandise. Sadly, the townspeople in the square are engaged in their traditional boisterous pastimes and no-one seems disposed to join him for a round of Kick-the-Book. All the components of his operation can be folded up for quick removal overnight, including the podium on which the elder van Holsterin is seated while she unravels a fez -- it is supposed to represent an Early Stage of Dementia.
The whole question arose at last night's "Evolution of holoparasitism and hemiparasitism among the Orobanchaceae and table-top billiards with jaffas" evening at the Old Entomologist. In particular, can computer games be an art-form? And the opinion was bruited about that games by necessity involve an element of victory or loss, which places them outside the province of Art.
Old Jem opined that this was not so, for he had wiled away much of his
Greenish Hugh pointed out that this definition would exclude bull-fighting as an art-form, to the distress of our Hispanic colleagues. Also the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, whose performances have much in common with the corrida de toros -- a primal clash of wills and endurance... usually the conductor triumphs over the musicians, but sometimes the orchestra are stronger and the concert ends in scenes of bloodshed and maenadic excess. These episodes of sparagmos make it hard to recruit guest conductors but they are what bring us back to each next concert. But I digress.
It was inevitable that Another Kiwi and I would be drawn into the conversation, for it arose in response to the death of noted movie reviewer Roger Ebert, and we are both spoken of as kinephiles.²
I was not convinced that Computer Games could ever be a work of art. AK began to vouchsafe some relevant Wittgenstein aphorisms vis-à-vis necessary features and language games -- which no-one ever wins -- but he was rudely invited to "put a salted pineapple in it" by coarse people who had over-imbibed of the fALEnheit-451.³
Over-imbibing of the fALEnheit-451"What does it mean, to bruit something about?" I wondered.
"It's a fancy way of saying that you sneezed it out your nose," said tigris.
EVEN NOW working on a computer game which -- to place its status as Work of Art beyond question -- will eschew the concept of 'winning' completely; not to mention concepts like 'finishing' and 'enjoying'.
Note that there is a game within the game. AK castles and two sinister figures loom in front of the botanist character A! I surreptitiously relocate a knight and dogs attack the horseman C! Evangeline E steals lemons! Actions taken in the inner game bring parallel events in the outer shell in the manner of the gwyddbwyll game between Arthur and Ywain in the Dream of Rhonabwy. This always happens; it must be a tradition, or an old charter or something.
Other details of Taxonomy! must remain for now in the Vouch-Safe leaving us little we can freely divulge. Suffice to say that botanic groupings must be constructed on the basis of nuclear ribosomal ITS-region affiliations; the Angiosperm Working Group -- conspiring behind the scenes to orchestrate the downfall of time-honoured families -- will provide dramatic tension.
More can be said once we secure the $75-million state-backed loan to complete and market the software.
------------------------------------------------------------¹ Image of the Lady May from here.
² The kin in question being our mothers.
³ The grain is roasted over burning libraries.