Not all video games are simple, mindless distractions. There are plenty of video games which require the player to interpret some kind of message or concept. Take for example a video game with a long, rich narrative; it may be trying to deliver a powerful message through the storyline. The art style might have been chosen to convey a certain mood or atmosphere which resonates with the story or message. Video games are more than mere toys; they are vessels of artistic expression and can say a lot about the human condition.
The player might ask themself similar questions about a game as they would ask about a painting or a film; "What were the developers/artists thinking when they put this into the game?", "Why did they choose this art style?", "Why did they have the character say or do this?". Game developers communicate as much through their games just as much as any artist communicates through their artwork.
There's a lot more to video games than simply pressing buttons. There are choices to be made, often difficult ones which affect what route a storyline will take, or even choices which reflect on the nature of the character the player is playing; "Should the character do a good or an evil thing?", "What is the right answer in this situation?", "Is there even a right or wrong answer to this situation?", "What are the consequences of the character's actions?" etc. This is not mindless gameplay; this is the same mental work which goes into interpreting artwork. Therefore, video games are art.