Isn't it about time we all agreed on review scores?

Much has been written about review scores in films, theatre, and literature, but it does appear that game critics and reviewers seem to be really hung up on the validity of representing the quality of a game in a seemingly arbitrary numerical value. I

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kancerkid2829d ago

Good article. I think a lot of people are real immature when it comes to review scores, especially games they own and think are excellent but one reviewer puts down as a 7/10, all of the sudden, everyone flips out.

NukaCola2829d ago (Edited 2829d ago )

When gaming media stops being biased fanboys who treat their site like they are some ranting blog space, then we can stop flipping out. But games are looked at different. A movie that is a 7 on the meta is a very good scored film, but a game at a 7 is a fail.

Overall there is way too much inconsistancy in reviews, so I recommend a better solution. Screw scores, and review the game for what it is.

Plus when it comes to the meta, sites that rate on a 4, 5, or 6 Start scale screw the score. A 4/5 is a great score in itself, but on the meta that is an 80% which on most school exams is 5 points above failing. I think everyone should get on the same page. You need to be on a 10, 20 or 100 point scale or else keep your scores of the collective.

darthv722829d ago

Opinion...that is what a review is. Seems the only way to accept it is if the person reviewing is on the same page as those who read it.

Yet that implies you are catering to the crowd instead of yourself. If you write openly and honestly then you should not have anything to fear if people do/do not like your review.

You can't please everyone and you shouldnt be required to.

Close_Second2829d ago


There is a difference between a review and opinion. Too many times reviewers stray from the facts and interject their own personal opinion.

Its not difficult to keep to the facts but then most reviews seem to be written to fuel fanboy behaviour.

darthv722829d ago

I would say you are right if reviews were written by machines and not people. It is easy to stray because if you are the one playing the game and writing the review you tend to write from the personal experience aspect.

The criteria that a review is based on is mostly personal and what you see/hear/ other words, experience. Thing is everyone is different and it should be viewed as such. Some may have a low tolerance for graphical tearing and others do not. The fact is there would be graphical tearing. How do you convey that in a review without expressing the personal dissatisfaction of seeing it?

Like I said. Reviews are not written by emotionless machines. If they were we would still be in the quandary we are now. People wanting to know more about the little that is listed. We could list facts in a game like how many cars there are and the load times and the tracks. It is more interesting to get the perspective of the person playing it through personal touches.

Where I find a great distrust in the process is not putting the right person in the right job. Taking someone who doesnt play a certain genre and having them review a game from that genre is like asking someone who has skills in one type of job and completely moving them to a totally different kind of job. Think Actor to Politics. It could work but most of the time it doesnt.

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Chris3992829d ago

The problems with numerical review scores are multi-fold: the reviewer, the review system and the the consumer. In 99% of all cases, the people who read review scores skip right to the number and ignore the actual "meat" of the article.

I'm all for abolishing numerical scores and just having worded reviews. People might actually have to read, study and debate the merits and flaws of a game and decide whether it suits their tastes or not. Metacritic is one of the worst things to happen to the industry. Its used as a measure of success and quality, when in some cases - glitch filled CoD - its not indicative of quality, merely financial success.

My biggest gripe with numerical reviews, is that for niche titles, tiles that do not fall into the AAA/FPS/ Action/ hype/ Metacritic cycle of things, these scores are often lower. It is rare to find more than one editor at the average media outlet who likes RPGs. Even then, do they like Western or Eastern ones. Likely Western ones.

Furthermore, in the case of some reviewers, I disdain the opinion that a game is "crap". Yes, I'm referring to the D-toid Trinity review, where Jim literally says that the game is crap and not worth your time or $. This generally indicates a broken or critically flawed title, which the game - technically and according to Metacritics own reviews and user scores - is NOT.

For these niche or Japanese titles, it feels like the average Western reviewer sits down with the worst mind-set possible, plays the game for an hour to reinforce their negative opinions, picks out every perceived flaw that they can find, and then puts their distaste to paper.

I have no issue with a "7/10", but if you're going to classify something as a "2/10" or "3/10", we're talking about broken shovelware on the level of Liesure Suit Larry: Box Office of Bust (currently 25 on Metacritic). You need to justify that more than: I didn't care for the repetetiveness or systems. Was the game broken? Did it set your machine on fire? Did you even PAY for it? Something that no reviewer usually does (pay for games), so I really question the whole concept of value for them. If I have X amount of games to review each day, I'm immersed and saturated in the medium, how subjective are my reviews, really? I realize that fatigue is a byproduct of every field of review, but still.

My 2 cents.

Chris3992829d ago (Edited 2829d ago )

Sterling's PSN ID:

I don't know if he has another account for reviews, but he hasn't even played Trinity: Souls of Zill O'll according to this (but has played LBP2 to a whopping 2%).

Edit: @ kancer. Kotaku actually do decent reviews. No score, just information.

Edit #2: He does have LBP2 on there (which he reviewed) and Splatterhouse and the infamous FF review (that he played till about chapter 3 before writing). So this would seem to be his "review" account. He played the game for maybe an hour tops - not even long enough to unlock a trophy. It was obvious from his review and why I took such issue with it before. I simply hadn't investigated till now.

Edit #3: Fair point. But he has a history - FF XIII - of publishing reviews with little playtime invested. Its hardly unfeasible that he did the same with Trinity. The review reads like someone who played it for an hour. He only mentions the first hour really, and none of the cinematic (of which there are dozens and dozens), or further game-play elements, which is suspicious.

I just think that this sort of reviewing is bad for the industry. And NOT because he gave it a bad score, but because it doesn't feel like he even invested himself in the review process.

kancerkid2829d ago (Edited 2829d ago )


I have been visiting GameCritics for 2 years now and would see their reviews on Metacritic with a score next to them and did not know where the score game from. They hide their scores in the review, and don't care about them in general.

I like reading reviews which talk about the game, how the story is, etc. I do not understand why people do not like Kotaku's reviews merely based on the layout, but they are cool as in they say what type of people will like the game based on certain information.

Edit: Aren't PSN accounts free and you can make a ton of them? I assume a guy like him would have multiple accounts so he isn't always hounded by people who don't like his reviews.

EDIT2: Sterling's trophy list also does not include Killzone 3, which he loves and recently reviewed. I would say that he has multiple accounts.

The Meerkat2829d ago

There isn't a problem with the review system.
Read as many as you can and decide for yourself what game suits you best.

There IS a problem with insecure buthurt fanboys who can't accept that some people don't like their new 'AAA' exclusive.

insomnium22829d ago

If MW2 gets a 10 and KZ3 gets a 7 there is a problem and the problem is not being butthurt. The problem is propaganda in the form of a gamereview.

Double standards is what is killing every bit of integrity gamereviews once had.

Urrakia342829d ago

How is that a problem? Real gamers know not to pay too much attention to reviews just as informed people know not to pay too much attention to the news channels

xTruthx2829d ago (Edited 2829d ago )

Yah cus there are no fanboy's on the media, its not like they gave the 360's mass effect a higher score when the ps3 version had all the dlc's and better visuals.

Wait.... they did :o

HK62829d ago

Everybody has their own and not everybody has the same one.

NYC_Gamer2829d ago (Edited 2829d ago )

we have to accept that everyone has their own opinion

anasurimbor2829d ago

Review *scores* are not a good idea. Simply writing a review, without slapping some unnecessary and nonsensical base value (A-, 3/4, 60%), is sufficient.

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