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Community Discussion: Blog by MathewRD | On Game Reviewing (Pt. 1: Why Jim Sterling is wrong)Destructoid
On Game Reviewing (Pt. 1: Why Jim Sterling is wrong) - Destructoid




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All pictures were taken off of google because when I played BF3, it was on a 360

So let's pretend TF2 weren't free for a second, and that copies of it were still pretty cheap. I remember picking mine up about a year ago for $10 from Best Buy's bargain bin. I promoted it being “The Best thing I've ever spent $10 on” and I would probably still say so with a solid 300+ hours on it. So what's with the title of the topic?

What if I were to review TF2 based on its story mode, or even use it as a factor? TF2 had no story mode, so how would I do it? I wouldn't. It's a game centered around the multiplayer, and it promotes it self as it is.

As I write this, a better example comes to my head. Mirror's Edge. Can you factor in the mediocre combat? Yes, you can, because it exists. But it's nothing score defining. Combat isn't the main focus of the game, and it is used at times, but at most it's minimal enough to make the story believable and not have the main character miraculously bullet-dodging everything flying at her.



Where am I going with this, is right here: Jim Sterling should not have made such high emphasis on BF3 having a bad story. The game was promoted around the idea of multiplayer, and yes they showed missions from the story, but that was never the truest intention. The majority of the time was spent promoting or showing off BF3's multiplayer. So then why make such an emphasis on something that's not part of the game that's most impressive.

The idea originally was that the story of games had to be good, but the times have changed. Games have proven to be completely digestible without a mere hint of a story. So why even have a story? It was a meaning to satisfy those who would have raged about it not even existing. Instead of saying “Why did the story suck so badly”, you can look at it more of a side-bonus. It's a bit of a stretch to say that, and I hope none of you take me the wrong way. The story shouldn't be a side bonus for a story-oriented game, but if it's a game that wants to make replayability it's key aspect, the story is one thing not necessary.



As a quick note, I have not played Battlefield 3's story, but I have played the multiplayer for a while. By saying this, I want to point out that I am not trying to establish myself as saying “BF3 story sucks” but as though this is what has been said by Jim Sterling. And honestly, I loved the multiplayer.

I am also not disagreeing with Jim's overall decision or score, but I am disagreeing with how he looked at the story with such emphasis. I realize the title may me misleading, however there was no other way to convey my idea to the cblogs. I do not believe Jim was wrong with his score or overall viewing of BF3, but I believe he was wrong with how he saw BF3's story being so terrible.


As time goes on, I see Jim Sterling as a less funny Yahtzee, and I mean that as no insult. But Yahtzee had the same problem, and I view that as incredibly ignorant too. Team Fortress 2 is probably one of the greatest games of all time in my opinion, and it lacked an entire story. But it made it up with some of the best FPS gameplay of all time, so high of a model as though I hate calling it a FPS because that's putting it in the same genre as “Brink”.

I loved BF3's multiplayer, but I can say that it's Bad Company 2 with graphics and a better engine. Not too game changing, but enough to earn my money. Bad Company 2 had a pretty bad story too, but it scored a point higher than BF3. This is probably because the reviewers of games were different (because they were), but then it brings another question to mind; Should a review of BF1 continue reviewing the games throughout the series? (I'll probably talk about his later on).

To summarize, I feel as though it's unfair to judge a game heavily on what it's not centered on. It's like hating Sno-balls (Hostess treat) because of little white piece of paper it sits on when you get it. It's on the side, and it's not the main part, so why the emphasis on it so heavily? Yeah, that piece of paper sucks because it has no use and no one's going to eat it/enjoy it. But let's focus more on the actually Sno-ball, because that my friends, is delicious.

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