So just to be clear (in case it wasn't and because apparently after what happened with PEWDIEPIE people need to spell out for certain braindead reporters from the Wall Street Journal that things aren't always meant seriously) I do not support Hitler. I don't support his ideas nor those of the Nazi Party. I do not own a copy on Mein Kampf nor have I ever read it nor am I encouraging people to read it. The point of the header image being well sometimes you can have a pretty good idea what to expect beyond the cover.
This latest blog was pretty much inspired by a few people on the internet trotting out the old tired defence of "Well you can't judge the product without playing it so go buy it play it then judge it" all over Mass Effect Andromeda. Now for those of you looking forward to it, well good on you but for me my involvement in it will reading whatever happens to the Quarians and watching the compilation sex / romance scenes on youtube once they're uploaded. Oh and edit the odd gif to make a crappy joke.
I'm not here to say you can't like it or be excited. If you are, good for you. I am here to talk about the idea of pre-judgement of product and how it can be valid and other times it's not so much. So firstly the point of marketing is to make people want the product. To make it look good. To build that desire for it. If after the marketing so far I'm not interested in the product and it's been marketed to showcase the product, well then the marketing has failed. I don't owe the product money. I have a limited amount of money and as such I want to put it towards things I'll likely enjoy. Yes I will take a risk on a property from time to time but even then I tend to work to be an informed consumer looking at reviews and advanced information on the game in question.
It's funny because this exact argument of not being allowed to pre-judge was deployed around the time of Ghostbusters Answer the Call. A film where after two trailers it'd had managed to get a total of 1 dry smile and one small laugh from me between them. I gave my time to watch the trailers, they didn't work for me I didn't see a point trying the full film. I even watched a few reviews around its release just to see if I was wrong. However those reviewers I trusted (Those that hadn't bought into trying to make it some landmark historic film of social change because equality or something) trashed it. Those reviewers who I know hold views diametrically opposed to me, praised it, they're allowed to and a review you don't agree with is useful if you're aware of the reviewers previous preferences. Instead I went to see Suicide Squad and I enjoyed my time. I won't try to pretend Suicide Squad was perfect, it wasn't but I enjoyed it enough.
With Mass Effect Andromeda they've shown a lot of the combat and well, it isn't interesting me. It looks like some fairly bullet spongy enemies but where they've decided to try and make a faster paced combat system rather than a slower one where enemies taking a few more hits feels like it would fit.
However it wouldn't be fair to say you can always judge a book by its cover. Case and point the game that has been sucking up a lot of my time recently.
Now I'd put this one down to in part me not looking into it a lot near its release and reading very few reviews and in part a seeming failure to market the game such that it explained quite why people should buy it. The thing is Slayaway Camp is huge. So far I'm about 2 sets of levels off finished (3 if you count the DLC) and I'm already over 8 hours in and even now it's been changing up the gameplay a bit with new mechanics. This game is good. The problem is my initial perception was "Oh it's a sliding block style puzzle game with a horror theme thrown over it. It's neat I guess but it'll probably not be that big and it's possible it's going to be an indie game that's very much one where the money went to style not substance" and wow was I wrong as it's got both very definitely, so much so I'm probably going to pick up the DLC down the line just because I want to support the developer more as I feel like I've got such value from it. It's very much a case of the book being far deeper than the cover suggests.
In the end though I feel the important point is that it's wrong to expect or suggest a user should play the game before judging it especially in an age where there's so much information readily available from Twitch Streamers or Youtubers or even games websites such as this. The idea that somehow you can't judge a game or shouldn't is a joke as really you can or you can trust other people's views on the game in the form of their reviews etc. A better point is you shouldn't judge a game too quickly and brush it aside. Unless it's an Ubisoft open world game in which case you know radio towers are going to play some part in it.
So Judging by the cover, have you done it? Have you found a game you judged by the "cover" only for it to end up being either better than you thought or worse than you thought?