But movies are just one model for games to emulate. Henry Jenkins, director of the comparative media studies program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, suggested that they are equally close to dance, as a medium of performance, or architecture, as a medium of creating unique spaces.
“The press treats Spielberg’s announcement as the second coming,” said Professor Jenkins of M.I.T. “But game designers remember how the game based on ‘E.T.’ nearly killed Atari, and is considered the biggest failure in game history.”
In its emphasis on filling games with scenes and dialogue to establish character, Professor Jenkins said, “Hollywood puts its effort into things gamers don’t care about.”
Though games may not produce Mr. Spielberg’s tears, they are the one medium that allows users to experience guilt, because they make the player responsible for the actions of a character on screen, Professor Jenkins said. “If you do something despicable, you have yourself to answer for.”