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1UP Changes Scoring Policy, Letters To Replace Numbers

Scoring games using numbers? Sucks. It's a total mess. So it's probably with great pleasure that the 1UP team (including EGM and Games For Windows) have today announced that they're done with numbers. For good. In their place will be a school-like grading system, with titles ranked between A+ and F. The changes will take place during March on 1UP, in the April issue of EGM and the April/May issue of GFW. Best part? 1UP will be trawling through their reviews archives and updating the scores for every game they've ever reviewed, replacing the numerical value with a letter. 1UP's newly-promoted Editor-in-chief, James Mielke, says:

"..it'll more accurately convey how we feel about a game. I mean, we knew a 5 out of 10 meant 'average' to us, but no one else seemed to get the clue. So we're changing things around so that anyone who's gone to school will instantly know how we feel when they see our letter grade on a game review."

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Rattles3518d ago

we can finaly judge games one the good stuff and the bad not just a stupid number at the end.

mikeslemonade3518d ago

This sucks for the people who were in the know that 5 was an average score on 1up. For the people who could not grasp a 5 was average then then the "School" grades should be better, but most people gets As and Bs so they're still going to think Cs are bad. And the number scale was the best because there was a possibility of 20 scores 0, 0.5, 1 etc. compared to 15 scores F-, F, F+, etc.

Brian52473518d ago

Thank you for changing it!!

Genki3518d ago

This is fundamentally the same as a numerical system. Just like in grade school, EVERYONE and their mom has their own interpretation of an A, B, or C.

There's folks who are happy with a C, and others who can't stand to get an A-. This will be no different. Elitist fanboys will still shun any game that's an A- or less, just wait and see. This is a strictly psychological difference.

Once again...rating games is not an exact science. Until the day reviewers quit being so ambiguous, gamers everywhere will continue to bicker about their personal interpretation of scores and grades without actually reading the content of the reviews.

They need to just quit trying to pass off critiquing a game as something official, scientific, or somehow more complicated than any layman can comprehend. It's as simple as whether or not it's fun, worth owning, worth playing, worth a rental, a classic, a piece of junk, or whatever.

Numerical and arbitrary ratings have been obsolete for entirely too long now, but it's the fault of us and the reviewers themselves.

DrPirate3518d ago

There only needs to be three ratings.

Buy, Rent, Dodge.

In the review content itself, it should pay attention to what is done well, and what has technical or design flaws.

That way the review material itself sticks to hard facts and minimizes subjectivity.

mistertwoturbo3518d ago

Actually no, even if a game got an A-, it is generally perceived especially if you ever went to an american high school, as having a good grade. It's only the small minority of "goodie two shoes" that cant have nothing but an A+.

But I think we'll find that this new grading system is a lot better than numerical. For example a game like Halo 3, only deserves a C+ at best, not a B, and definitely not an A.

Genki3518d ago (Edited 3518d ago )

Words like Buy, Rent, and dodge/pass/avoid have clear cut meanings. Granted, that means that more games will inherently fall into less categories, therefore casting doubt upon the reader, but that's the point.

Not enough people READ reviews anymore. Everyone takes reviews for granted as some pseudo-scientific method for rating games..they're not. A rating or score strictly reflects the opinion of the reviewer(or their agenda, either or).

The content within the review is what gamers are SUPPOSED to pay attention to,because that tells us about the story, that tells us about the sound, the gameplay, controls, aesthetics, and any other things that we just love to ignore these days.

Reviews aren't a tool with which to hand a game some arbitrary verdict, they're for our info. I don't exactly know when it happened, but they've been perverted by the entire gaming community, the publishers, media outlets, and gamers alike. Publishers for handing out gifts and whoring out ads to reviewers, media for succumbing to this stuff, folding under hype, playing to/against the crowd, or dangling scores over a publishers head, and most importantly gamers for putting these meaningless numbers on a pedestal. Once again, reviews should be there to inform us about a game, not shoehorn a stigma onto it and call it a day.

IMO, anyone who would complain about such a system being too ambiguous is probably part of the problem. Most likely the same folks who make their judgments on a game based upon numbers and aggregates. Not descriptions, not gameplay mechanics, not unique features, story, or anything of that nature...just numbers.

It's high time we started using reviews for what they're supposed to be used for, a point of reference. We don't read dictionaries as if they were novels, so why have we contributed to the perversion of game reviews?

ravinash3518d ago

Mr DrPirate, I would one more to that list...

Dodge, Rent, Buy or make a new religion around.

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 3518d ago
Statix3518d ago

I like this idea. People are too stupid to recognize what the numbers actually mean in a numerical scoring system, and subsequently dumb fanboys will complain about scores being too low when in truth every other score is overinflated.

DrPirate3518d ago

Exactly, this falls into Clinton's point about people not reading reviews anymore. They just focus on the numbers, and some shortend summary of the pros and cons. You never get the jist of what this game was trying to bring to the table.

Genki3518d ago

Literally, the only difference between this and numbers are the fact that one is a digit and the other is text. Literally. A letter or a number has no MEANING. Why?

Ask 30 people what an 85 means to them. Guarantee you'll get 30 different answers.

Ask 30 people what a B means to them. Again, you'll get 30 different answers. It's no different.

On the other hand...ask 30 people what the word buy means...you'll get the same answer from every one, same with rent and avoid.

This is the problem inherent with numbers, scales, letters, and scores. They're ambiguous, not specific, unclear, not defined.

What does A mean? There's no amount of problems and questions to get wrong in any ten different games that will equate to a particular grade. This isn't a test, there are no specific multiple choice answers here. The reason an A is an A in school is because it's based upon how many problems one can answer correctly. Once again, critiquing a game isn't a science, it's subjective, so no matter how you cut it, an A+, B-, C, or D will mean different things to everyone.

thedude176553518d ago

would they think 5 out of 10 is average in the first place, everyone who has made it past kintergarten knows that means you did bad. 7 out of 10 is average, to me anyway.

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