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Braid's Blow: Social Games Are 'Not Very Social'

Jonathan Blow, developer of hit indie title Braid and upcoming The Witness, believes that games like World of Warcraft and Counter-Strike are far more social than "evil" social games.
Jonathan Blow, developer of hit indie title Braid and upcoming The Witness, believes that games like World of Warcraft and Counter-Strike are far more social than "evil" social games. In an interview with PC Gamer, Blow said that social games are more about "exploiting your friends list" than actually being social. "[With certain social games] it’s about the game exploiting your friends list that you already made, so it’s not really about meeting people." he said. "And it’s not really about doing things with them because you’re never playing at the same time." "It’s about using your friends as resources to progress in the game, which is the opposite of actual sociality or friendship. Maybe not exactly, but it’s not the same thing, right? They’re really just called social games because they run on social networks". The developer explained what he classes as being social in gaming. "A game like World of Warcraft or Counter-Strike or whatever is way more social. Because you actually meet new people in clans or guilds." Blow said. When asked whether he thought social games were evil, he stated "Yes. Absolutely. There’s no other word for it except evil." "Of course you can debate anything, but the general definition of evil in the real world, where there isn’t like the villain in the mountain fortress, is selfishness to the detriment of others or to the detriment of the world. And that’s exactly what [most of these games are]." Gamasutra talked to Jonathan Blow recently about upcoming adventure game The Witness and the challenges in switching from 2D to 3D.

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