You don’t have to go far to hear about how bad Metacritic is for the gaming industry. Kotaku recently wrote a great piece about it and Adam Sessler also had some good points in his recent video. This isn’t a new complaint either, IGN covered it a year ago and so have countless other sites.
Ninja Theory’s westernised reboot of Capcom’s stylish hack-and-slash Devil May Cry has been pretty divisive. Long time fans aren’t particularly enthused about Dante being an angsty, emo teen. Their bitching and moaning seems to have all been for naught though; it seems the reboot hasn’t divided critics who’re full of praise for the game. Here’s what reviewers had to say.
It’s an open secret that there are a few media outlets out there who have no issue with accepting money for higher review scores or even worse, giving high review scores in an idiotic attempt to secure extra advertising from companies.
Hitman Absolution rolls out to dispense some bar-coded bald justice on scantily clad nuns in latex tomorrow, as it the cult classic franchise returns after a lengthy absence. But can a game with an emphasis on creative solutions and single-player content really succeed in this turbulent landscape of contemporary online warzone shooters and islands infected with madness an exploding everythings? According to these scores, yes it can.
Happy backstab day guys (WHY GEOFF? WHHHYYYYYY?!)! The third core chapter in the Assassin’s Creed franchise is officially out today, waiting for you to jump in and engage in some historical combat. And it looks like the game is a winner so far.
Assassin’s Creed III will be getting a US release tomorrow, while we’ll be getting it just a day later. Stock is already in stores and there should be no delays with the title at all. those of you eagerly chomping at the bit might be happy to know that the game’s received its first reviews – and they’re looking might promising indeed.
The latest instalment in the Resident Evil franchise is out right now, and after the zombified mess that was Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City, the fans are obviously eager for something new and improved in the latest undead chapter. Reviews are out for the game, and so far, the scores are more conflicted than Geoff’s sleeping patterns.
One of the most reiterated problems with the pirate-RPG Risen 2: Dark Waters, was its lack of playable pirate sailing and battles. I found this interesting, since not many have voiced that same opinion about benign transport for, say, Mass Effect.
True: You did manage to control forms of transport in all three games, from the awful Mako to the Normandy itself. But the big space battles only occurred during cutscenes: there was no Joker versus Collectors or Shepard versus space-pirates. I am glad those didn’t occur, since I was more interested in the actual brilliant RPG than the method of transportation of my characters.
Gavin recently noted that games that receive almost universal dislike from professional reviewers still sometimes sell better than ones highly praised. For example, Sniper Elite V2 sold better at one point than Mass Effect 3. Ignoring for the moment that sales don’t indicate quality – Twilight, anyone? – it is still interesting to wonder about game reviews’ purpose, in general. After all, if reviews that universally hated a game do nothing to reduce a game’s sales, then what is the point of reviews? To be clear, the aim of a critical review is not to reduce the sales of a game (though I did hope to stop at least two purchases with my column on Skyrim): but reduced sales of a game is usually a sign that people aren’t going to invest time and money, because they know it’s crap. And obviously people discover crappiness through reviews.
Gavin’s point was that this data means either that people don’t care about reviews or that they simply ignore them. Both are good things, but it doesn’t negate reviews altogether. It just means in many instances, reviews are ignored – it doesn’t prove reviews are pointless.
It was just yesterday when Geoff posted up asking if review scores matter after Resident Evil Racoon City which was an appalling managed to sell nearly 2 million copies.
And then last night I received an email from a local distributor showing how well their game is doing in the UK with Sniper Elite V2 knocking Prototype 2 off its perch in the UK.
Yesterday we uh…expressed dissatisfaction…with the way Monkeybin studios treated us and our readers as idiots - by providing pre-written, overwhelmingly positive reviews of one of their games for us to post on the site. To make it more of a slap in the face, they didn’t even provide us with a copy of the game so we could make up our own minds.
They’ve now issued an apology via email; although if I’m honest, their apology is about as half-baked as their copy & paste reviews.
It begins with a short sharp sentence.
Now the obligatory sentence written in first person to describe some fantastical event that would never happen to people like us – like battling dragons, destroying spaceships, or sleeping with girls. Here, a mention about the developer’s history; perhaps the game’s first appearance at E3 from thirty years ago; or maybe how we’re about to have our mind’s blown (but probably not because we’ve seen the screenshots already). Perhaps the first paragraph ends with a question mark to make you read on?