We suspect that a number of gamers, including some of us at Nintendo Life, hope to see video games become an increasingly respected medium in comparison to veteran forms such as the book, film and TV. Even compared to the latter two gaming is a young art form, and due to a variety of factors is still striving for mainstream recognition not just based on sales — which is already being achieved — but in terms of critical appreciation and coverage.

Games don't necessarily get treated with the depth of analysis that they arguably deserve, and one fascinating project seems set to do its part to resolve that issue. Game Design Companion: A Critical Analysis of Wario Land 4 is the work of Daniel Johnson, a game design analyst and former GameSetWatch columnist; as the title suggests this eBook will assess Game Boy Advance game Wario Land 4 in comprehensive detail. Below is some detail from the press release.

Author Daniel Johnson, in a radical departure from contemporary videogames discussion, examines Wario Land 4 in its totality—including mechanics, psychology, education, level design, and game feel—calling on evidence-based analysis to understand the player’s subjective reactions to videogames.

Says author Daniel Johnson:

“A Critical Analysis of Wario Land 4 is unusual in its approach as we begin to understand videogames through evidence-based analysis rather than socio-cultural critique. I’m hoping this book will push against the accepted norms of ‘games criticism’ and open up new avenues for analytical discussion.”

The eBook will be sold on Stolen Projects from Wednesday 18th December, with each purchase providing both .pdf and .epub formats; its standard retail price will be $7.99, but it will have an introductory price of $4.99 until 31st January 2014.

We plan to check this out, do you?

Game Design Companion Cover1

[source danielprimed.com, via usgamer.net]