Why “if you don’t like it, make your own” is not a valid argument

Today, in response to critical outcry on a certain disgusting videogame trailer making rounds on the internet (relevant links here and here), Tycho of Penny Arcade fame responded saying that rather than complaining about it, people should instead be making their own art. As a creator of my own art for the last decade or so, this particular silencing tactic — because let’s face it, “silencing tactic” is exactly what it is — angers me on a very personal level, if only because I once bought into it completely.

Don’t get me wrong. I love creating my own art. It’s an activity out of which I get more joy than almost anything else. I love encouraging people to create their own art too, because the art I enjoy most is the kind that’s personal and intimate. I haven’t even so much as touched a big-budget videogame in quite some time, simply because none of them interest me very much, these days. The book Tycho linked to in his post, Anna Anthropy’s Rise of the Videogame Zinesters, is absolutely fantastic and empowering and I wholeheartedly recommend it to everyone reading this. And yet… that’s not all there is to the story.

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Some notes on “The Play”

First off, I’ve released a new game! It’s called “The Play”, and it’s a text-based interactive story about a theatre director trying to make sure a dress rehearsal doesn’t go horribly wrong. Except, well, there’s a bit more to it than that. Anyway, go play it if you haven’t already. It’s not very long to get through, and it even plays well with mobile devices!

I also entered this game into the seventeenth annual Interactive Fiction Competition and it managed to win third place! Not bad for a first entry, or so I’m told. Squee!

Anyway, below the jump are some of my assorted spoileriffic thoughts on the game. Hello, sweetie!

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