Video game genre

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Video games

A video game genre is a classification assigned to a video game based on its gameplay interaction rather than visual or narrative differences.[1][2] A video game genre is defined by a set of gameplay challenges and are classified independently of their setting or game-world content, unlike other works of fiction such as films or books. For example, a shooter game is still a shooter game, regardless of where or when it takes place.[3][4]

As with nearly all varieties of genre classification, the matter of a specific game's genre is open to subjective interpretation. An individual game may belong to several genres at once.[1]

History

In Tom Hirschfeld's 1981 book How to Master the Video Games, he divides the included games into broad categories in the table of contents: Space Invaders-type, Asteroids-type, maze, reflex, and miscellaneous.[5] The first two of these correspond to the still-used genres of fixed shooter and multidirectional shooter. Maze is also a modern genre.

Chris Crawford attempted to classify video games in his 1984 book The Art of Computer Game Design. In this book, Crawford primarily focused on the player's experience and activities required for gameplay.[6] Here, he also stated that "the state of computer game design is changing quickly. We would therefore expect the taxonomy presented [in this book] to become obsolete or inadequate in a short time."[7] Since then, among other genres, the platformer and 3D shooter genres, which hardly existed at the time, have gained a lot of popularity. As hardware capabilities have increased, new genres have become possible, with examples being increased memory, the move from 2D to 3D, new peripherals, online functionalities, and location-based mechanics.

The business of video games expanded in the 1990s and both smaller and independent publishers had little chance of surviving. Because of this, games settled more into set genres that larger publishers and retailers could use for marketing.[2]

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