So I'm one of those video game nerds who grew up in the 80s. Zelda, Mario, Mega Man, Ninja Turtles... you know the games. I'm still a gamer all these years later, currently using valuable time on my PS3, PSP, DS, GameCube, Dreamcast and Saturn. My favorite genre is probably RPGs, which is no surprise since as a child I enduring the punishing torture of Final Fantasy I and Dragon Warrior I. I also love action/adventure, puzzle, FPS and pretty much every other video game genre out there, except for sports.
When I'm not wasting time with video games, I'm wasting time as the webmaster of the Mecha and Anime HQ, or recording podcasts. I also have this annoying thing called a day job, which by the way is a reporter.
Some infidel reviewer has committed the grave sin of giving your precious game (which you haven't played yet) a review score that's lower than what you've arbitrarily decided is proper.
Good lord, what is one to do?!?
Obviously, the answer is to bitch and moan about it on and on. But I'd like to offer my own humble suggestion, if I may: SHUT THE FUCK UP.
Now, this post was inspired by the seemingly endless stream of moronic comments following the 6/10 that Nick gave to Brutal Legend. Now tell me, seriously, is this the end of the world? I know it can be hard for rabid video game fanboys to see things outside of their narrow tunnel vision, but is it really important that Nick didn't like the game and dared to give it a score lower than other sites? Given that reviews are subjective opinions, does it really matter what Destructoid thinks in comparison to IGN, GameSpot, or whoever? And seriously, does IGN have any credibility to begin with?
While the Brutal Legend review is the most recent example, this is a trend that's been developing for years. Any time that some high profile game comes out, angry fanboys invariably have to mention how some other site gave it a certain score, or that the review average on Metacritic is whatever number. The question here is, who cares? We all know that a 9 on IGN is not the same as a 9 on Destructoid. I laugh while reading Fanboy Fridays how there's always some idiot bringing up Killzone 2's IGN scores somewhere, but Brutal Legend has convinced me that Dtoid isn't immune from this stupidity, sadly.
Follow me back in time to 2006, when then-GameSpot editor Jeff Gertsmann DARED to give The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess a mere 8.8/10, and not the 1,000/10 that it clearly deserved. It was the very definition of a shitstorm, with angry fanboys proclaiming that he was wrong, that it was at least a 9.5, etc. Then, as now, there were people complaining that it shows how number ratings on game reviews are flawed and shouldn't be used. It's funny how that complaint only comes up when it's a score someone disagrees with.
Which brings me to the whole point of this rant: why are people so hung up on review scores?
Don't get me wrong, I'm a huge video game fan and will play games until the day I die. But I don't see why people react so strongly to negative reviews of games they like. Often, it's a game they haven't even played yet, but are simply excited about. If that's the case, where do you get off saying that a review is "wrong" when you haven't touched the game yourself? If someone reviews a game and is being a troll or is being contrarian simply for the sake of being contrarian, speak up. But just because someone's opinion is different than yours, it's no excuse to fly off the handle. For whatever reason, some fans react as if a negative review of a game is a personal attack against them. It's really quite stupid, and I wish more people were mature enough to realize this.
Maturity and video game fanboys in the same sentence? Surely I must be mad...