The Power of Games




Most, if not all, people picture their future selves somewhere and start setting their goals accordingly to reach that ultimate place. And I’ve pictured mine! 

I’ll make games! 

And no, I don’t mean mobile games. Mobile games might be more popular, but I consider it a phase in my life. I mean the big games! YEA the bigger they get the better!

Ever since I’ve decided to become a game developer, nearly everyone had a common reaction about the way I saw myself and my future. Varying from the “It has no future in Egypt” talks to “You are ruining your career” ones, there was that one common question that I have been asked.

“Why?”

Games are commonly deemed unimportant; ridiculous waste of valuable time and money that you’ll surely regret wasting. On the other hand, it’s acceptable to waste your time and money on movies and football matches. …. So isn’t that just a new type of racism?! Against games?! Artists work their hardest to express themselves through paintings that – in a way – are just hung on a wall somewhere where everyone gets to see it, yet no one ever thinks of their work insignificant! In fact, thanks to all the artists’ imagination and creativity, lots of people get inspired!

Wait a second.. famous artists weren’t appreciated during their time, no? Does that make us artists?! WAIT! Will games be showcased in museums in 100 years’ time?! Okay, that’s a future I am willing to see.

But despite what’s commonly thought of games, I believe that games are indeed pieces of art. What makes games more special than artwork – and forgive me artists for being one-sided here – is that games are interactive pieces of art! With games, you don’t just inspect the portrait and speculate what the artist wanted to say, you live what the portrait wants to say.  Who hates seeing places you’d never get to see in real life? Although it gets tricky when you have to fight dragons.

But returning to the ultimate question of why one might want to spend his life stressing out players with secret missions, to me the answer is easy enough. It’s because I believe games have the power to change the world. It might sound ridiculous, but it’s true. Games inspire and change. They target individuals, and many gamers relate to games on a personal level. Games have the power of sending messages through its interactivity that no other form of art or entertainment has, and it will just click with someone. It has the power to change people, and with it the power to change the world. I make games in hopes of inspiring someone, the same way games had inspired me.

 Keys To Success Demo



But thinking games only affect gamers is a wrong idea, because game developers make games to express themselves and it – in return – changes them. Just like how my own game affected me personally.
“Keys To Success” is a game that I have been working on for a while that is a way of exploration of the essential keys or principles of success and achievement through in-game puzzles. Originally it was developed for a 2-day event called the Global Game Jam and for me when the event was done, it was done. But circumstances had that the game development progressed in a competition called “Imagine Cup”. In order to develop a game about self-development, I had to read about self-development first to get a grasp of how to make an enjoyable puzzle and of a value at the same time. And the more I read, the more I realized my own flaws and discovered more about myself that normally I wouldn’t even notice. (Apparently I have fear of failure!) I started to think more deeply about what makes me tick, and in return it made me want to know what made people tick. I wanted to embody their fears and their hopes in the game, and to speak to them through the game elements and help them out. And it made me realize how that’s just what makes game developers want to develop games.

And I am pretty sure that by now, someone might mumble “How did Mario ever inspire the gamers or even the developers?” And the answer is quite simple.

That plumber was the one who started it all!



~Nourhan ElSherief

Co-Founder and Game Developer at 2024 Studios

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