A couple weeks back I posted a blog observing that all the fall "heavy hitters" (Deus Ex, Resistance 3, and Gears of War 3) had all received a rating of 9 from IGN. I stated that I was of the opinion that the rating of 9 had become obligatory; a default score, if you will, for any company that gave IGN any advertising money.
I quickly got my ass chewed out by trolly posters and inbox messages accusing me of unfairly hating on IGN. Most of the comments were ad-hoc, off topic, and mildly retarded.
Although I wrote off IGN after they gave GTA4 a perfect 10, it doesn't seem to stop me from checking their scores. After wading through half a days worth of Activia adds popping up on my screen I find that IGN has given GOW3 a 9. Big surprise. Especially considering IGN has given every fall "big hitter" a 9 so far. Resistance 3; 9. Deus Ex; 9!
Look, I haven't played GOW3 yet, and I'm certain it's a 9 or above. However, if you're going to use a point system, as IGN does, then take advantage of it! When was the last time you saw a game get a 9.1 or a 8.6? I know it happens, but the trend lately seems to be that if you make a game, and there is ANY amount of hype around it, your game gets the ole obligatory 9.
When I see a 9 I automatically think that the reviewer is lazy. Either that or they are trying to perform a balancing act between not pissing fans off and making sure that studios will still advertise with them. However, it seems more often than not IGN has leaned on the side of studio. Games are F#$%ing expensive! And if you're like me, YOU PLAY A LOT OF THEM! The folks at IGN are the "rich kids" of the gaming community. They have a very large following and they capitalize off this hardily. For them to skirt their responsibility to the audience is shameful. My advise to IGN; go back to your root and start giving games an honest grade. The gaming community will be all right without all the Activia ads.
No one cares about relaxing games; I'm going to review comic books for you guys. Why? There is much bleed between the game-fan-boys and the comic-fan-boys and the comic fans need some representation on Destructoid. I would like to start with short critical essay on the "new 52" D.C. universe and then each Wednesday release a short review and rundown of the top 5 comics of the week. ... or something like that. Here's a short preview of week #1's essay.
It occurred to me a while back that D.C. comics is obsessed with origin stories. The last decade D.C. has seemingly served up countless telling and retelling of the core heroes backgrounds. When they realize a heroes origin retelling has become obtuse, they kill that hero off then bring s/he back to give them a new origin. In an effort to prove me right, this month D.C. launches "The New 52." Following the events of Flashpoint (yes it was actually called Flashpoint...skip it. or if you're obsessive just read issued #5) Grant Morrison and pals have rebooted the D.C. universe while simultaneously having NOT rebooted the D.C. Universe. Sound confusing? It is.
D.C.'s modus operandi of minimizing fanboy alienation while streamlining their universe to reel in new readers is a risky proposition. The core fanbase doesn't want the last few years of reading to have been in vain. On the other hand many of the lofty story arcs have become muddled and fairly out of grasp for someone who wants to jump into a new comic. With this problem in mind, last week D.C. released their flagship title "Justice League #1." And the verdict?. well... it's kind of great.
I would love to review comics for you guys. Give me a shout.