This article is about all types of games in general. For games played on a consumer electronic, see Video game. For other uses, see Game (disambiguation).
Ancient Egyptian gaming board inscribed for Amenhotep III with separate sliding drawer, from 1390 to 1353 BC, made of glazed faience, dimensions: lima.lima × 7.7 × 21 centimeter, in the Brooklyn Museum (New York City)
A game is a structured form of play, usually undertaken for entertainment or fun, and sometimes used as an educational tool. Games are different from work, which is usually carried out for remuneration, and from art, which is more often an expression of aesthetic or ideological elements. However, the distinction is not clear-cut, and many games are also considered to be work (such as professional players of spectator sports or games) or art (such as jigsaw puzzles or games involving an artistic layout such as Mahjong, solitaire, or some video games).
Games are sometimes played purely for enjoyment, sometimes for achievement or reward as well. They can be played alone, in teams, or online; by amateurs or by professionals. The players may have an audience of non-players, such as when people are entertained by watching a chess championship. On the other hand, players in a game may constitute their own audience as they take their turn to play. Often, part of the entertainment for children playing a game is deciding who is part of their audience and who is a player. A toy and a game are not the same. Toys generally allow for unrestricted play whereas games come with present rules.
Key components of games are goals, rules, challenge, and interaction. Games generally involve mental or physical stimulation, and often both. Many games help develop practical skills, serve as a form of exercise, or otherwise perform an educational, simulational, or psychological role.
Attested as early as 2600 BC,[dua] games are a universal part of human experience and present in all cultures. The Royal Game of Ur, Senet, and Mancala are some of the oldest known games.DefinitionsLook up game in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.Ludwig Wittgenstein
Ludwig Wittgenstein was probably the first academic philosopher to address the definition of the word game. In his Philosophical Investigations,[lima] Wittgenstein argued that the elements of games, such as play, rules, and competition, all fail to adequately define what games are. From this, Wittgenstein concluded that people apply the term game to a range of disparate human activities that bear to one another only what one might call family resemblances. As the following game definitions show, this conclusion was not a final one and today many philosophers, like Thomas Hurka, think that Wittgenstein was wrong and that Bernard Suits’ definition is a good answer to the masalah.Roger Caillois
French sociologist Roger Caillois, in his book Les jeux et les hommes (Games and Men)(1961), defined a game as an activity that must have the following characteristics:fun: the activity is chosen for its light-hearted characterseparate: it is circumscribed in time and placeuncertain: the outcome of the activity is unforeseeablenon-productive: participation does not accomplish anything usefulgoverned by rules: the activity has rules that are different from everyday lifefictitious: it is accompanied by the awareness of a different realityChris Crawford
Game designer Chris Crawford defined the term in the context of computers. using a series of dichotomies:Creative expression is art if made for its own beauty, and entertainment if made for money.A piece of entertainment is a plaything if it is interactive. Movies and books are cited as examples of non-interactive entertainment.If no goals are associated with a plaything, it is a toy. (Crawford notes that by his definition, (a) a toy can become a game element if the player makes up rules, and (b) The Sims and SimCity are toys, not games.) If it has goals, a plaything is a challenge.If a challenge has no “active agent against whom you compete”, it is a puzzle; if there is one, it is a conflict. (Crawford admits that this is a subjective test. Video games with noticeably algorithmic artificial intelligence can be played as puzzles; these include the patterns used to evade ghosts in Pac-Man.)Finally, if the player can only outperform the opponent, but not attack them to interfere with their performance, the conflict is a competition. (Competitions include racing and figure skating.) However, if attacks are allowed, then the conflict qualifies as a game.
Crawford’s definition may thus be rendered as[original research?]: an interactive, goal-oriented activity made for money, with active agents to play against, in which players (including active agents) can interfere with each other.
Other definitions, however, as well as history, show that entertainment and games are not necessarily undertaken for monetary gain.Other definitions”A game is a form of art in which participants, termed players, make decisions in order to manage resources through game tokens in the pursuit of a goal.” (Greg Costikyan) According to this definition, some “games” that do not involve choices, such as Chutes and Ladders, Candy Land, and War are not technically games any more than a slot machine is.”A game is a form of play with goals and structure.” (Kevin J. Maroney)”A game is a system in which players engage in an artificial conflict, defined by rules, that results in a quantifiable outcome.” (Katie Salen and Eric Zimmerman)”A game is an activity among two or more independent decision-makers seeking to achieve their objectives in some limiting context.” (Clark C. Abt)”At its most elementary level then we can define game as an exercise of voluntary control systems in which there is an opposition between forces, confined by a procedure and rules in order to produce a disequilibrial outcome.” (Elliot Avedon and Brian Sutton-Smith)”to play a game is to engage in activity directed toward bringing about a specific state of affairs, using only means permitted by specific rules, where the means permitted by the rules are more limited in scope than they would be in the absence of the rules, and where the sole reason for accepting such limitation is to make possible such activity.” (Bernard Suits)”When you strip away the aliran differences and the technological complexities, all games share four defining traits: a goal, rules, a feedback system, and voluntary participation.” (Jane McGonigal)Gameplay elements and classification
Games can be characterized by “what the player does”. This is often referred to as gameplay. Major key elements identified in this context are tools and rules that define the overall context of game.Tools
Games are often classified by the components required to play them (e.g. miniatures, a ball, cards, a board and pieces, or a computer). In places where the use of leather is well-established, the ball has been a popular game piece throughout recorded history, resulting in a worldwide popularity of ball games such as rugby, basketball, soccer (football), cricket, tennis, and volleyball. Other tools are more idiosyncratic to a certain region. Many countries in Europe, for instance, have unique standard decks of playing cards. Other games such as chess may be traced primarily through the development and evolution of its game pieces.
Many game tools are tokens, meant to represent other things. A token may be a pawn on a board, play money, or an intangible item such as a point scored.
Games such as hide-and-seek or tag do not use any obvious tool; rather, their interactivity is defined by the environment. Games with the same or similar rules may have different gameplay if the environment is altered. For example, hide-and-seek in a school building differs from the same game in a park; an auto race can be radically different depending on the track or street course, even with the same cars.Rules and aims
Games are often characterized by their tools and rules. While rules are subject to variations and changes, enough change in the rules usually results in a “new” game. For instance, baseball can be played with “real” baseballs or with wiffleballs. However, if the players decide to play with only three bases, they are arguably playing a different game. There are exceptions to this in that some games deliberately involve the changing of their own rules, but even then there are often immutable meta-rules.