Gaming’s Artistic Uprising: Beyond just Pixels & Graphics

a purple, pink and blue fantasy landscape that is digitalised with pixels and old school graphics.

The pixelated Italian plumber, Mario, debuted in 1985. His simplistic design captivated the hearts of gamers on a global scale. Flash forward, and now the gaming industry is a testament to human achievement, with digital graphics so lifelike you could confuse them for a scene from your window.

But as video games have technologically evolved, the community's values have experienced a notable paradigm shift. While graphical beauty still garners admiration, it isn't necessarily the crux of gaming allure anymore. For brands aiming to make an impact in the gaming sphere, understanding this change is pivotal.

From Graphics to Gameplay: A Journey

As technology enabled increasingly realistic graphics, gaming studios were quick to capitalize. Titles like "Crysis" were lauded for their graphical prowess and set benchmarks for the industry. But then a phenomenon occurred. Games with lesser graphical fidelity but unique aesthetics, like "Minecraft" and "Valheim," took the world by storm. It wasn't the realism but the game's essence that resonated. This highlighted a subtle, yet seismic shift: Gameplay and uniqueness became central, overshadowing pure graphics.

The Art of Uniqueness

What these popular games encapsulate is the art of storytelling and emotion, conveyed through a distinct aesthetic. "The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild," for example, doesn't aim for photorealism but instead captures a unique art style and ambiance, perfectly mirroring its narrative.

This shift to uniqueness is more than just an industry trend; it's an evolution in how we consume content. Just as film enthusiasts might appreciate an indie film's narrative depth over a high-budget CGI-packed blockbuster, gamers are looking for experiences that touch their souls, not just their eyes. Even though there are still people who prefer the bombastic graphical emphasis of old, a new, one could say more refined, gamer persona has emerged. 

Marketing to the New-Age Gamer

This evolution in gaming values presents an opportunity for advertisers. Traditional flashy graphics and loud advertisements may not resonate with gamers. But a well-crafted message, paired with an art style that aligns with said message's substance, can strike a chord.

Brands need to find that sweet spot, where the medium's message and aesthetic harmonize. Think of it as the "gameplay" of advertising. Instead of full-throttle, over-the-top, neon graphics, what matters is how well the art captures the audience's imagination and how effectively the message speaks to them.


In the dynamic world of gaming, where players are spoilt for choice, graphics are just one part of the equation. Unique gameplay and storytelling matched with an art style that encapsulates the game's spirit, holds the key to a gamer's heart.

Advertisers need to take a leaf out of this book. It's not about the flashiest graphics or the loudest bangs. It's about finding that unique voice and conveying a message that genuinely resonates. This is what we did for Innit, tackling the intrinsic problem of conveying heavy technological jargon in a meaningful, and unique, way.

To truly connect with the modern gamer, it's essential to understand them. And in today's world, that means appreciating the art of the game, not just the art on the screen.

Björn Ehrnberg