"there are many of us who feel as if the reviewing segment of our hobby has gone completely awry over the past few years. In my ever-so humble opinion, when it comes right down to it, I question whether it was any good from the outset. Many of us grew up with gaming but unfortunately, in many ways, gaming hasn't grown up with us. We're still the purchasers of hackneyed trash and in most cases, we do it with a smile. I had an opening rant prepared on the review system for this editorial but after lengthy consideration, I will defer to Rob Reiner and his mockumentary classic, This is Spinal Tap.
Nigel Tufnel: The numbers all go to eleven. Look, right across the board, eleven, eleven, eleven and...
Marty DiBergi: Oh, I see. And most amps go up to ten?
Nigel Tufnel: Exactly.
Marty DiBergi: Does that mean it's louder? Is it any louder?
Nigel Tufnel: Well, it's one louder, isn't it? It's not ten. You see, most blokes, you know, will be playing at ten. You're on ten here, all the way up, all the way up, all the way up, you're on ten on your guitar. Where can you go from there? Where?
Marty DiBergi: I don't know.
Nigel Tufnel: Nowhere. Exactly. What we do is, if we need that extra push over the cliff, you know what we do?
Marty DiBergi: Put it up to eleven.
Nigel Tufnel: Eleven. Exactly. One louder.
Marty DiBergi: Why don't you just make ten louder and make ten be the top number and make that a little louder?
Nigel Tufnel: [pause] These go to eleven.
Like a 13-year old watching Neon Genesis Evangelion and calling it fine art while cursing Sunshine in the same breath, most video game reviewers seemingly hold contempt for the games they review. After all, if they were maturely reviewing games based on adulthood, why would juvenile ramblings be universally praised with adulation such as "Oscar-worthy dialogue" or "stunning storytelling" when they are written on the level of a third grade comprehension level and show the cleverness of Dane Cook's standup routine? Most of what we play in games would be laughed out of any other form of media, yet we lap it up and buy into not only that one game but also the inevitable sequels that will follow it. This doesn't bother me much, as all I have to do is look at modern cinema or the recording industry to see the same thing happening. There is a key difference, though; the professional critics of those industries rarely buy into the media hype behind their respective ad campaigns. If anything, they challenge the hype and it causes a reverse effect on the ratings. In short, there appears to be some form of critical integrity throughout most competing entertainment media."