The author of The Rise of the Videogame Zinesters has a problem with videogames. Anna Anthropy says exactly that to start the book, but she's quick to distinguish herself from the politicians, newscasters, armchair psychologists, and religious leaders who condemn the medium for the antisocial and/or violent effect they have on people. There has never been much substance to these claims. Instead, Anthropy's complaints are that the video game industry has become a corporate, risk-averse, profit seeking behemoth where mostly straight, white males create games for other straight, white males.
This is the jumping off point for Anthropy's rallying cry. With technology developing so rapidly, the process of creating your own videogame is becoming much simpler. She sees the creation of digital games as a new form of diary - a very personal act of expression that we may or may not share with others. Increasing the amount of people and perspectives expressing themselves in this way naturally leads to a far richer, more varied art form. Her final chapters provide a basic guide on how to get started.
Of course, this all assumes that the videogame is worth developing. Rise also serves as a concise defense of the medium and its merits. Anthropy broadly defines a game as "an experience created by rules." This is what makes games, digital or otherwise, unique. The interaction unique to games combined with the rules defined by their designers to guide an experience, allows for experiences different from a novel or film.
Using the tools available, more people from different backgrounds are beginning to create more meaningful, personal videogames. Many are shared for free on the internet, while others usually involve a relatively small monetary transaction. Some people, like Anna Anthropy herself, are making enough of a profit to pay the rent all while avoiding the exclusive, corporate industry that routinely undermines courageousness and creativity. Rise of the Videogame Zinesters is a progressive, eye-opening look at the world of videogames. Anthropy convincingly argues that there is indeed value to be found here, but it shouldn't be measured in dollars.