Games can contain art and inspire art, but rarely are they art themselves.  (Sean Clarity, Excitebike.)It’s difficult to be objective about it. Games are so often belied that to be able to classify them as art would silence critics. The problem is the majority of popular games could never be defined as art.

The roadblock sat between games and art is money. As long as developers are reliant on sales and profit they have to make the game that consumers will like. This is achieved through play testing. This leads to further iterations and changes. This process may make a masterpiece of design but not art as it detracts from the message the piece was to express.

Art has two defining features, that it stated to be art and that it is to convey a single person’s vision. Small independents and designers powerful enough to exert full control have the power to continue to move games closer to art. Just don’t expect to like them.