Metacritic scores on average higher this year than last

Metacritic has compiled some data on how this year’s games are performing compared to 2009. Looking at the first six months of last year next to 2010, the organization has found that while sales may be suffering at the moment, the quality of games may be going up.

So far, seven titles have achieved a Metacritic score of 90 or better, which is comparable to last year, but three games (Super Mario Galaxy 2, Red Dead Redemption and Mass Effect 2) managed to score higher than the best reviewed game from the same period in 2009 (Street Fighter IV). Meanwhile, only sixteen games have received ratings below 50, which is down from twenty-five last year.

That sounds good, but we also have to consider how many games simply didn’t get released in 2009 as originally planned, so it’s a little hard to tell how seriously we should be taking the upper end of the spectrum. If the tactic of having a more rounded, year-long release schedule for high-profile games, these numbers will be more significant next year.

As for the bottom of the barrel, it seems as though the report leaves off some titles because they haven’t received enough reviews. I’ve found no less than three  With all of the stuff coming out every month, it’s unsurprising that some lower-quality shovelware might not garner the necessary quantity of reviews, but it doesn’t change the fact that the games came out this year. 

So, games might be better this year than last. It is also possible that they aren’t. Statistics are fun!

Midyear Report: The Best Games of 2010 So Far [Metacritic via Edge]

Conrad Zimmerman