So Rob showed me RWBY, a CGI animated series that fuses video game and anime styles. It’s by Monty Oum, and thus has quite a pedigree. I found it enjoyable if needing fleshing out, and did enjoy the use of game stylings a great deal – there’s a very definite Suda 51 vibe that appeals to me.
But what was weird in watching this fan production by a fan favorite is that I found my reactions were odd. How was I to judge it considering its pedigree? Considering it’s audience-friendly involvements and previews? Considering it wasn’t from a big company?
It reminded me when I saw Pacific Rim, which is a giant love letter to mecha films (both military and super). I mean I knew I liked the idea of it, I like what I saw, but my reactions felt strange. On one level it was totally targeted at . . . well me. On the other I wanted to judge it as I would any film.
Then I thought about Rogue Legacy, which I noted “spoke” my language. It was also a personal experience, and one that made judging the game different because that was the very goal.
I was not judging these things based on artistic merits entirely. I was evaluating them in a series of contexts like who did them, focus on the audience. It was very personal. Oh sure there were merits I could note, but in many cases they came down to merits that existed in a personal/social context.