Doctored screenshots make games look better, but they can also be frustrating. GamePro speaks with industry insiders to expose the secrets of the infamous practice.
Faked, enhanced, or otherwise augmented screenshots are commonly called "bullshots." Their intent is to make a game look more appealing than it actually is, and their occurrence has largely existed since video games were first commercialized. So are bullshots misleading or just good marketing?
"Exceptionally misleading," says Steven Kent, author of The Ultimate History of Video Games. But that doesn't mean Kent wouldn't employ the practice were he a game publisher. "It's kind of like negative campaigning in politics," he says. "Everybody hates it, nobody respects it, but it's the upstanding guy who won't stoop that gets blasted." In other words, bullshots are a harsh reality.