Drs. Greg Zeschuk and Ray Muzyka discuss art, game creation and more.

“What’s a ‘BAFTA Guru lecture’?” you wonder aloud. Well Billy, I’m glad you asked. Relatively recently, the fine people at the British Academy of Film and Television Arts decided to host a series of semi-formal presentations by various artists in different fields, ranging from movies to television to videogames. Most crucially however, the BAFTA folk created the BAFTA Guru website to host these informative chats purely with the hope that something said by one of the artists might inspire the next generation of creative types.

It’s a noble goal, that invites a lot of easy cynicism, but that was before we saw SimCity creator Will Wright’s excellent treatise on addictive gaming and the human need for escapism. Since then we’ve pretty much been glued to the site.

The latest gaming-centric addition to the BAFTA Guru collection comes courtesy BioWare founders Ray Muzyka and Greg Zeschuk. While the clip embedded at top is only a trailer, the full version (which can be found on the BAFTA Guru site) runs for 25 minutes and includes a pretty solid defense of videogames as an art form. Granted, everyone and their senile mother has weighed in on the topic by now, but Zeschuk and Muzyka offer a far more compelling, learned take on the subject than your average NeoGAF commenter. While I’d normally write off any mention of Tolstoy as hyper-pretentious autofellatio, I have to hand it to the two men: their argument is both salient and grounded enough for the hoi polloi.

Unlike my use of the term “hoi polloi.”

Additionally, the duo explains a good deal of BioWare’s thought process behind creating an epic roleplaying title. Say what you will about the company’s recent output — needs more miniature giant space hamster — but you have to admit that these two fellas know a bit about crafting big games.

As an extra bonus for those of you who finish the first video and want to see more of Mr. Zeschuk’s excellent beard, the BAFTA Guru site also contains a half-hour-long Q&A session with the two men. It’s not quite as inspirationally informative as the lecture, but it’s still an excellent bit of footage for BioWare fans and anyone hoping to get into the business of game creation.

After all, not everyone can score a cushy games journalism job.

Source: BAFTA Guru

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