One of those random thoughts you have in the shower:

John Carmack has been quoted a couple times as saying that he believes games are not art, and I was always put off that someone who has such a prominent place in the industry took such a disappointing line.

I started playing Doom 3 on the Xbox yesterday, and after getting through the first four or five levels, I think I can now understand why he feels that way.

The graphics are incredible for the Xbox, and the play mechanics are all solidly dialed in. It clings pretty closely to the id FPS formula, and I daresay that there aren't any aspirations present, save those of jump-scares and high adrenaline.

Although I think a case can be made for Doom 3 as art, I think an equally strong one can be made that it's not. It's a product made to certain specifications, and it fulfills a certain need, but it doesn't reach; it doesn't really try for more. But you know, some games and designers do.

Maybe Carmack should have said that his games aren't art, and left it at that.

Brad Gallaway

Brad Gallaway

Brad Gallaway has been playing games since arcades were a thing and Atari was the new hotness. He's been at GameCritics since 2000. Currently, he's juggling editing duties, being a homeschooling dad, a devoted husband, and he does try to play a game once in a while.

Brad still loves Transformers, he's on Marvel Puzzle Quest when nobody's looking, and his favorite game of all time is a toss-up between the first Mass Effect and The Witcher 3. You can catch his written work here at GameCritics and you can hear him weekly on the @SoVideogames Podcast. Follow Brad on Twitter and Instagram at @BradGallaway, or contact him via email:

bradgallaway a t gmail dot com
Brad Gallaway

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