Some critics may be dismissing the idea of games as art all too quickly, yet these are not the people who's authority carries much weight on the subject. If you want to know whether games are art, would it not make sense to bring that question before the art world?
As the blogosphere mulls over the finer points of this discussion, artists at established institutions such as Parsons The New School for Design in New York, the Academy of Art University in San Francisco, and Otis College of Art and Design in L.A. have already moved on to create works in this medium. In conjunction with EA, a series of shows at each of these schools named The Sims: In the Hands of Artists has brought forth results that the art community has already accepted. Works from students at Parsons were exhibited at the Chelsea Art Museum in New York (briefly mentioned on Kotaku), while the other collections found their homes in the AAU 79 Gallery and Otis' Ben Maltz Gallery respectively.
In addition to such widespread acceptance, the success of this endeavor was also touted in a recent ARTNews article titled Messaging is the Medium. The Author, David Ng is a contributing writer for The Believer and The Village Voice. He talks in his article about the artists' using The Sims as a platform for mods and machinima. Screenshots featured are from The Sims 2: The Ten Plagues Expansion, a mod sporting biblical plagues such as diseased livestock, water transformed into blood (like the image above), as well as locusts, hail and fire.
Now, I don't know about you, but I'm more inclined to put stock in the actions of three prominent art schools and major galleries, not to mention the artists themselves, over the words of one (or more) jaded media critics. The revolution began a long time ago. The fact that the rest of the world still hasn't caught on to this reality is regrettable, but somewhat inconsequential at this point.