A couple weeks ago, I traveled to San Antonio to see Nightwish and Sonata Arctica play live. These are two bands that I’ve revered for a decade. The line into the theater stretched around four sides of a city block, maybe more — hundreds of people eager to see the show. During the performance, the crowd followed each song with cheers. We waved and shouted. We sang parts of the songs that many of us have known for so many years. And as expected, the bands delivered nothing short of a great performance.
As I left the theater, I found myself reflecting on how much art means to us. In that theater, we all shared an experience – audience and band alike. We often carry this idea that art belongs to someone, i.e. the artist. This is true for intellectual property laws, but in a more humane sense, it’s not so simple. I think we come to own something together through art – we come to own the experience.
Sharing that experience is part of why I make games. I’ve written about how the Storyteller is not the owner of a campaign. When we share space at the table (and the creative process that comes with it) we are creating something that everyone can take home. Memories become treasures. Our characters in long-gone years become sad-sweet memories of a past life on a world somewhere in the ocean of our minds. When I listen to great bands and read great books, I keep reaching this conclusion: art serves the audience. It gives to the audience, and it gives and gives.
Isn’t it true that we feel our favorite works often become “part of who I am?”
And so I’m thinking now of how Evocraft can continue to grow. How can it serve others, as it serves me? I have had great experiences with my game. I continue to have them. How can I give great experiences to others?
What can I give to you?
March 31, 2016