I have a confession to make: When I'm not gaming, I'm reading the New Yorker, watching French New Wave cinema, and otherwise being a pretentious tw*t. It dates back to high school, and a desire to date girls with new wave haircuts who read Rilke and wear black clothes. Anyway, it's rare that my two worlds meet, but in this week's New Yorker, pointy-headed author Nicholson Baker talks Modern Warfare 2.
Baker, a non-conformist who writes intellectual porn novels (seriously) like Vox and The Fermata, played COD with his son and checked out Uncharted 2 and Mass Effect 2. Far from being dismissive like Roger Ebert or appalled at the game's violence or otherwise aghast at the game's content, Baker seems to get gaming -- and like it.
Baker describes Modern Warfare 2's multiplayer as humbling, and says he realized how "much is at stake" when you're playing. Baker describes Uncharted 2 as a "beautiful game," and rhapsodizes in wonderment about its attention to detail.
Speaking of Ebert, Baker says, "To say that something is Art is not necessarily that great a thing to say. There's a ton of bad art out there...some of [the games] I've played felt more consuming and intellectually interesting to me than a lot of novels I've read, so there's no question that they are art."
Baker says if someone asked him to write for video games, he would give it a try. Please, video game industry, ask Nicholson Baker to write a game for you.
Also: Listen to the whole podcast right here, and then drop Nicholson Baker's name and use words like "novelistic" around girls who make their own clothes and you'll totally have a harem in no time. Trust me.
PS: Nicholson Baker's kill-to-death ratio in Modern Warfare 2 is 0.08. (noob)