But can IF ever be great art, the type which people go back over and over to read or play? A similar question would be: can computer games ever be as evocative or lasting as cinema? While these forms have undeniably not produced anything as transcendent as a Bergman film or a Nabokov novel so far, one has to remember that interactive fiction is still in its infancy.
There is no reason why well-written interactive fiction cannot equal or beat traditional ludic literature, such as the spy novel or the detective story, in quality. Complex literary worlds created in IF may convey moods and feelings, an end in itself. There is also no intrinsic reason why stories cannot have great characters and let choices from the reader shape them? The short answer is that it is too early to answer these questions. The jury is deliberating, and looking to the future. —Swarat Chaudhuri —Tales That Let You (The Statesman)
Via Grand Text Auto.
The title of the article seems to be truncated on the website, and the formatting is choppy in other ways… but if you can get past the sloppy presentation, Chaudhuri’s article is a good introduction to the literary issues behind my favorite digital genre.