Thomcult: Last week saw veteran game writer Kieron Gillen call for a change in the culture of videogame reviewing. Central to Gillen's argument is the notion that videogame reviewers should take a more 'elitist' - as opposed to 'populist' - approach when reviewing games.
While Gillen argues that talking up games like Brain Training, games which would otherwise sell themselves, is a waste of critical man hours it in fact offers a unique opportunity for game marketers.
Word of mouth is the equivalent of a marketing holy grail. Consumers repeatedly assert that they value tthe recommendations of those around them over any unsolicited corporate communication. Furthermore, persuading consumers to engage in positive word of mouth is an art form in and of itself. What game marketers have in the form of the videogame reviewing culture is essentially a kind of word of mouth generator.