One of the most annoying things I see in this industry is either poorly written or lacks the ability to be fair. This goes for user reviews as well as the best of best gaming reviews. Who has seen a review and thought that is was either too high or too low? Actually, if you notice, the gaming review industry likes to say that most games are around a 6.0 (or 60%) or higher. Any game below that is usually a joke, so they just randomly pick a score to give it. What the industry loves to do, sadly, is say most hyped games are around a level of 8.0 (80%) or higher. And why? Because of the readers. The whinny cry baby audience will scream to the Queen, "Off with their heads!" if they review a game they love and is popular lower than what it really is. I'll give some examples for games on every system
Resistance: The Fall of Man: IGN gave the game a 9.1, while the average reader gave it a 8.8. 1UP gave the game an A, while the readers gave it an A+. GameSpot gave it a 8.6, readers give it a 8.7. Resistance was the first PS3 game I played and I played it right after trying out the new duck-and-cover systems in Rainbow Six: Vegas and Gears of War. This was also a time for co-op campaigns (and still is). I beat the game, tried out the multiplayer, and overally was impressed by the visuals, but the actual gameplay, I just didn't care for. This felt like a highly developed generic shooter. The multiplayer was fun, and for the most part, original to the console. I came from the Xbox 360, which I was lucky to player a 16 player match without lag, and went to this new system that featured 32 or 64 players (can't remember which now) and with the rooms maxed out over a wireless connection, never noticed lag. But still, did it deserve an average of 8.7 across Metacritic? We'll find out later.
Halo 3: Same idea as above. IGN = 9.5, Readers = 8.1. 1Up = B+, Readers = C+. GameSpot = 9.5, Readers = 8.9. As a person who was long awaiting the original Halo (since it was originally going to be a PC exclusive), I absolutely thought this series was going to be the best of the best shooter series ever. We actually traded in a SNES and some games for Halo: Combat Evolved in 2001 before we got the Xbox. The manual kept us entertained for quite some time. I say the most honest of the above reviews for the third installment is the readers of 1Up. Again, we'll find out why later.
Wario Ware: Smooth Moves: IGN = 8.2, Readers = 8.1. 1Up = A-. Readers = A. GameSpot = 9.1, Readers = 8.5. I own this game and I think it's one of the better buys on the Wii at the moment (since at the moment, the VC is the only reason I flip the dust collector on). The problem with this game? Well, it's about 1 hour of gameplay. You have to unlock multiplayer. The games are too simple. So, overally, should it be getting these reviews? Let's find out.
The review industry has a huge problem, and it's the same problem with critics of anything. It's like we don't want to hurt the feelings of the products we review. If you haven't noticed, our products we review have no souls. They're not going to cry in a corner over you not thinking they're "teh best game evar". Instead, they're going to do what they're meant to do and that's be played when we're bored enough to play. With that in mind, that's follow these simple steps to writing "teh best reviews evar", and quit wasting people's time and screwed up how we really feel because we're scared some jerk on the internet won't like us if we say such-and-such game was alright, or just flat out sucked.
How to Review Video Games Using Numbers
Review Score: With any website, or any magazine, they have a set aside premise as to how to overall rate your game. If I'm in a hurry and I want to check what a game received, I head over to a few review sites and check the overall score and the overall beef with the game. However, over time, I realized reviews just aren't cutting it. I'm seeing a lot of sub-par games getting Great reviews or even the Perfect reviews (which is ironic that a game can be perfect and during the full review, the reviewer points out some flaws with the game). Let's examine the scoring tree on a generic level for all. Scoring a game between 0-2 means the game is "Broken". A perfect example of a game that should be in the class is Carmageddon 64. The game was truly not finished and possibly never beta tested.
A score of 2-3 means the game was "Crap". A game that should go in here is a game that's completed, but just lacks in everything, such as graphics, gameplay, sounds, music, and controls. I truly wish I had an example but I don't.
A score of 3-4 means the game was "Bad". I'd like to point out there's an actual difference between a Bad game and a Crap game. Crappy game titles are the games you probably wouldn't bother playing to the second level, or at least never beat the game. A Bad game is a game you could finish, but it's just so poorly written that it's hard to finish the game, but you could at least play through it, if you have the time.
A score of 4-5 means the game was poor. Again, there's a difference between Bad and Poor. Poor is a step above Bad. Poor just means it would have been a pretty good game if it were on a bigger team, probably had a bigger budget, somewhere in that matter.
A score of 5-6 means the game is "Mediocre". What exactly does that mean? Basically, it's a game that's not the best and not the worst. It has it's moments, but has it's flaws. We've all played them, yet, most of us will kick it above that 5-6 mark just because we're thinking in our heads "Well, I at least enjoyed it.". That's wrong. If the good and bad are about equal in comparison, then give the game a 5-6. It's not a bad thing. We all have secret games were know are horrible in the eyes of the gaming industry, but we still enjoy them. They're not great games, or even good games. They're just games that are slightly fun to play. My shamed game is Postal 2. I bought the game when it came out, without reading reviews, and enjoyed it all the way through. I thought it had some amazing ideas, was pushing the limits of what you could do, the gasoline effects were fun to play with, yet I agreed with a lot of reviews that the game suffers from lazy programming. I'd say it's fair to say the game is in this level, and I love this game.
Next off is a score between 6-7, which are games that are "Fair". Fair is often thought of as a bad thing. Absolutely not! Let's review the definition of fair. Fair basically means the game would be tolerably good. In a sense, fair still means the game is good, just has more flaws than a good game. Who sees a game in thiscategory and never buys the game? If you do, you need to learn to read. These are still fun games, sometimes to a great degree, but they have some bad taste they leave in your mouth. Today's fair games are usually patched, making them more good games than anything. But we really need to pay attention to the words that associate the numbers. Jeff from old-GameSpot gave Kane & Lynch: Dead Men a 6.0. That's probably the only honest review he's given himself, but still, the game wasn't bad, it wasn't generic, it was just a fair game. A sort of been there, done that, if you will. But sometimes clones can be amazing fun. Look at the new hype, Braid.
Back to the reviewing parts, 7-8 games are games that a Good. When did Good become Bad? When fanboys took offense to their games being rated anything other than G-d-like. This is the section that starts getting stupid with idiots thinking a game they liked deserved a score higher than good. Good is good. Good should be where most of the Great games are, or even the Superb games. I'd give you the definition of Good, but that would spoil your supper.
Games of 8-9 mean they were Great. Great and good are almost the same thing. As we can tell from this number list, going up one notch is all you're doing. You're saying, "Hey, this game was fun, but this game was better because it did this a bit better.". Why must so many idiots be in the world to think that if a game didn't get a 8 or better, it sucked? When did good become bad? When did fair become bad? For that matter, when did mediocre become a bad thing? People, learn to read! It's important that we understand the number system. It's really annoying to see games reviewed to the extreme. It's almost like we should just adopt a Clint Eastwood star system. The Good, the bad, and the ugly, if you will. I'd say about only 5% of the great games out there deserve it.
Then we have the 9-9.9 system, which is Superb. This score should only be awarded to games that are completely original, completely new in almost every way, have great stories, have great gameplay, and have downright killer everything. The only thing breaking it from being a 10, the best of the best, is a minor flaw. Nothing that even should be patched, just something minor. I can check any website and pull up a review and show you where a game in this area received some type of " here's the flaws" section, and there's a list. If there has to be a list of flaws, drop it back a notch. It's a great game, but great still isn't bad.
Finally, there's the growing-in-popularity number 10. The number that we've been seeing given away like condoms to middle schoolers. A 10 means perfect, correct? And we know perfect means flawless. So why in the world do I see games like Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3 receiving a perfect? Or Grand Theft Auto 4? Or Metal Gear Solid 4? I mean, yes, they're near perfect, but that's why the powers that be adopted the 9-9.9 score in the first place! It's annoying to read a perfect review and then hear "...graphics stutter...", "...random slowdowns...", or "...more like watching a movie...". Do these college geeks that run these websites and magazines actually know what the heck the rating system is about?
The worst of the worst reviews is PC Gamer's Crysis review. It's a prime example of how we should NOT review games, and what most reviewers are doing today. The review states flat out lies to prove that the game was worthy of the score. Anyone that reads PC Gamer is aware of their fear of the dying PC gaming world (which isn't completely true, but the PC gaming community is a dying breed). You can tell they're scared when they cram almost every page with "don't pirate, you hurt the industry" and "reasons PC gaming is not dying". If it's not happening, do what I do with global warming: ignore it. But their review states that Crysis is very open, non-linear, and is the AI is very realistic. I trust PC Gamer, and I still do, but the reviewer obviously just wanted people to think that their "killer app" wasn't a suckfest. Crysis suffered from being linear, sucky AI, and a cheap gimmick of being able to pick up anything in the game (another lie). How many have heard of Crysis because of it's killer graphics or it's cool physics? Well, what PC Gamer didn't tell me, the person who bought the game, is that it's short and once you beat the first 3 missions, you've picked up every item in the game. After that, you'll run into the same huts to blow up, the same looking enemies, and the same exact. Who can enjoy a game that you need to spend an arm and a leg on just to play?
With that, I'd like to present you with honest scores for the games I mentioned above, now that you know what each review number really means. For Resistance: The Fall of Man, I give it a 6.0. I'm still looking forward to the second one, but I'm not holding my breath until then either. For Halo 3, it's a 7.5. I give it that because they still haven't done anything new with the game. It felt like a tweaked version of what we had been playing for years already. And lastly, Wario Ware, I give a 5.5. It was an alright game, but it suffered from length and being too easy. Honest reviews, folks. That's all we're asking for. So next time you decide to rate a game you love or hate that "Clint Eastwood review" of being extreme left, middle, or right, remember that there's some of us that want to bust your face in with an iron for screwing up the Reader review.
-dryvby, writing a new wall of text
EDIT: Since I forgot that DESTRUCTOID is mainly full of 40 year old faggots, I'll change the word perfect so your periods won't bleed onto the new carpet mom put down for you in the basement.
Perfect will be changed to OMGWTFAMAZING or TEHBESTEVAR.