Submitted by wound 694d ago | opinion piece

10/10: The Problem in Game Reviews

Kyle Lawrence writes:
"Recently a GYP colleague showed me Edge’s list of games that have received a 10/10, or perfect score. Looking at this list, I noticed that as we get closer to the present day the frequency of 10/10 games shoots up dramatically, which you can see in the chart below.

As time goes on, games have vastly improved technologically and the industry has gained more experience, so it’s not unexpected to think that more 10/10 games would come along. But what I see is a list that gets sketchier and more debatable as it goes." (Industry)

yellowgerbil  +   694d ago
I think a lot of reviewers think you will only look at the review if it is either AMAZING or AWFUL. why read a review that is 8/10 just so pedestrian...
admiralvic  +   694d ago
Most people don't actually read reviews, but simply look at the score. You can see that constantly in the comment section on N4G and peoples reactions to some negative reviews.

The real problem is how reviews are read like college grades. While 5 should be average on a 10 point scale, we instead see 7 as the average score. This in turn makes it a lot harder to score things well and I believe is why you see a lot of 9 review scores. That and people don't want to deal with drama. A lot of people know it's a LOT easier to compromise their integrity to make companies / consumers happy, than to give a popular game a low score.
cleft5  +   694d ago
If a game review site wants to play that game where there reviews are somehow magically different than everyone else where a 5/10 is average than they shouldn't be trying to get those scores submitted to metacritic.

I see sites that do stuff like that as being pretentious and harmful. Most people see a 7/10 as being average. Review scores tend to correlate with the grading scale for school system in most people mind. This isn't inherently a bad thing as it gives every reviewer a target for what is consider average, good, great, and excellent.
joe90  +   694d ago
8/10 is amazing with minor faults.

1 = bad

5 = average

10 = perfect

in the eyes of a lot of gamers a 7/10 is a failed title where as i see it as better than average but not perfect. an 8/10 review is a great review and the devs should feel proud for that score.
#1.2 (Edited 694d ago ) | Agree(6) | Disagree(4) | Report | Reply
yellowgerbil  +   694d ago
yeah. that's the problem. there is no defined definite rule to scoring, unlike school.
I think 10s come too easy for certain. to me 10 should mean flawless, I love fallout but it is flawed to all hell, but because games no where near as good as it (basically every game besides bioshock and naughty dog games) they have to give it a 10 just because it is better.
slimeybrainboy  +   694d ago
The problem is more with people who read reviews than the reviews themselves. 10 doesnt have to mean perfect. You don't see a Movie get 5/5 and movie buffs say "What the fuck, what about the plothole where Jimmy should have got a email!" But in games people take 10 to mean flawless.

I like IGN's definition of a 10: Masterpiece.
'A work of outstanding artistry, skill, or workmanship.'

You just have to look at individual sites and reviewers and see the range of scores they give out, the whole point of a review is that it is one persons evaluation.
come_bom  +   694d ago
I find every review that's 10/10, quite absurd, not worth my time reading them. No game deserves a perfect 10, don't matter how good it is. I don't read reviews 10/10. The reviewer is simply over-hyping the game, and i don't trust him.
#3 (Edited 694d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(3) | Report | Reply
admiralvic  +   694d ago
Depends on a lot of things, but I do believe there are some perfect games out there.

In my own personal opinion, Spelunker HD is the only 10/10 game I've played on the PS3 and that is out of nearly 400 games on the PSN alone. The game was brutal, but fair if you understood the mechanics (think of Demon Souls). There was no story, so you weren't bogged down with pointless details as to why you had to search a cave for stuff. The game is roughly 20 times longer than the NES version that the game is a sequel to. Every floor followed a unique theme / logic to change up the gameplay. Featured 6 player online co op, 4 player splitscreen co op and slightly different levels in MP. In addition to all of this, the game also featured an option to play the game in HD or in "8 bit", which resulted in the WHOLE GAME being scaled down to look like the NES version and featured the 8 bit soundtrack. Even stuff that wasn't in the original game looked like things that came from it. Very impressive. Also the game featured home unlocks, a platinum trophy, 200 challenging mural pieces and cost a mere $10 dollars in the US ($25+ in Japan originally). The game was also later remade when Tozai games got the rights to it, which resulted in 10 challenge levels being added for free and all buyers of the original were upgraded for free. An additional 9 DLC packs were released and only $2 dollars for each set of 10 levels. They also launched for $1 dollar with Plus, which was also when the game was on sale for $5 dollars.

Killer deal and insane quality.
wingman32x  +   694d ago
The 10/10 has become so devalued over recent years. A 10 out of 10 used to be very rare, and a sign that a game was truly special IMO. Now it seems like nearly every big budget game gets at least a handful of them.

This is all IMO of course. I remember subscribing to magazines throughout my childhood, and I didn't see nearly as many 10/10's as I do now. Of course, some of that may have to do with the internet increasing the amount of reviewers for any particular game, but I do think the 1-10 scale has gotten softer.
admiralvic  +   694d ago
A bit of this has to do with higher quality games being released and as you've said, more reviewers. So far I know I've seen BioShock Infinite, The Last of Us, Rayman Legends, Dragon's Crown, Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate, SMT IV, Soul Sacrifice, Metal Gear Rising, Super Luigi U and JoJo's Bizarre Adventure all get at least 1 perfect score. This isn't even counting GTA V, Killzone Mercs, Pokemon, Wind Waker, Link Between Worlds, Watch Dogs, Shadow Fall, Battlefield 4, CoD Ghosts, Super Mario World, DK Tropical Freeze (or whatever it's called), and more set to release by the end of the year.

Also a lot of this has to do with people writing off things they just "dont care about". Like Dragon's Crown lacking voice chat was a big thing to me, where as I know at least 1 reviewer that didn't care and didn't impact their score in the least.
RedSoakedSponge  +   694d ago
it seems like 7/10 is the new rating to give a game that is average, which is stupid in my opinion.

its a hole reviews have fallen down which is near impossible to get out of.
#5 (Edited 694d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
TPSou  +   694d ago
I think part of the 'problem' is that many games are of quite a high quality now. Loads of games are a lot of fun and offer fantastic value for your money, moreso than 10 or twenty years ago.

A '5' reflects a game that is average, not good or bad, just fine. To me this would be a game that works but isn't very exciting or compelling like some of the SImulator games. They're not broken, they're just not that polished or fun. When you start looking at games with budgets in the millions you're going to see lots of 7s, 8s and 9s because the people that make them are very talented and lots of money is spent on them.

For those implying journalists compromise their integrity to keep companies happen, I've never had a publisher or developer put pressure on me to give a high score and contacts from larger organisations (IGN for example) have said exactly the same, it just doesn't seem to happen now, if it ever did, the marketing people know and understand how reviews work.
admiralvic  +   694d ago
I can tell you FOR A FACT that the site I use to write for was anti anything that could piss off a company. It got so bad that the EiC actually gave one of my reviews 3 extra points because I "angered" the company, where as the company just wanted to make sure I wasn't right about their glitch. Maybe it's not common practice, but a lot of sites are ran by greedy... who just want to make sure their free games keep a flowin.
TPSou  +   693d ago
Oh yeah I can imagine people trying to win over PR people by lying about games, I just meant the pressure doesn't seem to come from the companies. I've always thought if I ever got an e-mail telling me to publish a lie in exchange for something I'd publish the e-mail, but I've never had one.
jackanderson1985  +   694d ago
ha if i based any of my purchases off of reviews i'd be a richer man.. i've bought some games that received piss poor reviews and loved playing them
#7 (Edited 694d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
CalamityCB  +   694d ago
In my own opinion 10/10 should be the impossible score, no game can ever be the "perfect" game, as with films and literature. This is due to everyone's perception of the perfect item varies from person to person, a typical gamer who buys a couple of games a year may say that this years annual FPS shooter is a 10/10 must buy game, while the seasoned gamer would rather eat a dogs shit than rate it anywhere near the "perfect score".
It should be a non-said rule that the 10/10 score is virtually impossible, think about it, if a game does get 10/10 that means it is the perfect video game, flawless in design, since it is so perfect why would you ever need to play another game as it is the epitome of the industry?
The sad thing too is people see scores such as 7-8/10 as low score or even more, a bad game when these scores are quite high.
There cannot ever be a perfect game, if there is it means we have reached the epitome of video games, no further progress must be needed as this game is perfect. In essence it would mark the end of a industry.
ALSO if we are at the point where reviewers can be put under pear pressure by the makers of the product, is there any point of trustworthy review anymore?
(See admiralvic response to TPSou as reference).
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CalamityCB  +   694d ago
Sorry if I killed anyone with this brick wall of writing :(
admiralvic  +   694d ago
A common misconception is that a 10/10 is a perfect score, but it's actually a lot more like a 4.0 in college. For instance, my Japanese syllabus defines an A or 4.0 as a score above 92%. So there is no difference between getting every question right and averaging a 92%, since both grades give you the same "perfect score". This is pretty much the same thing with 10/10 reviews, since it simply means that there might be some minor flaws, but the whole package more than makes up for it.

To put it another way, you could apply this concept to any homework assignment that doesn't have an absolute answer. Like would you be happy if your teacher gave you a 9.9/10 because you didn't capitalize a word, spelt 1 word incorrectly, forgot a comma, had a run on sentence, used the wrong font or made literally any other error in your paper?
NoTheMama  +   694d ago
Ive been thinking this way for a while now. Most reviewers review graphics more than than the games themselves.

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