The XBLA/PSN game called Amy never really caught my attention. At least, not until I began seeing some of the lowest review scores that I had seen in a long, long time.
Having seen a few trailers for the game, it didn't impress me that much. It struck me as yet another zombie game. Big whoop. We get one of those every few months.
But for some odd reason, I was compelled to do a bit of digging. "Wasn't this the game that IGN said was 'like ICO, but with zombies'?" I thought to myself. Indeed, as I looked into the past, I found a great number of glowing previews for the game. Destructoid, IGN, Gamespot, and many other sites all had very nice things to say about this game.
IGN had these two articles on the game last year:
Amy is ICO with Zombies and it's brilliant-
Amy Makes Fighting Zombies feel fresh again-
Gamespot did a preview on the game, too, praising its atmosphere and gameplay:
If you're so compelled, you can look up other previews on other gaming sites, too.
My point is that Amy was getting a fair amount of hype. It had positive previews from pretty much every big-name gaming website.
And then the reviews hit.
2/10. 4/10. 1.5/10. Horrible, horrible, horrible scores. IGN called it "horrifyingly bad". Wait. Hang on a second, folks. I thought this game had "incredible atmosphere". I thought this game was "a breath of fresh air into the zombie genre". Now you're telling me it's a bad game? It would be one thing if they were a bit apprehensive in their previews, but no. These gaming sites unabashedly shower the game with praises. They don't say "well...I hope they can work out the bugs, because the game has potential" or "I think there are a few neat things, but let's wait until we see the final product". No. Nothing like that. It was eager preview one after another.
To me, this situation clearly exposes the motivations of so-called "gaming sites". "Advertisement hubs" is more like it. I've always lived by the mantra "there's no such thing as a bad preview", and Amy is a shining example of that philosophy. Think of the gamers who watched trailers, read previews, and expected a great, unique zombie game. They got shafted. They relied on honest previews and instead got thinly-veiled advertisements.
I'm not saying these journalists were bribed.
I'm saying these journalists are all idiots who couldn't tell a good or bad game if it punched them in the face. These journalists flip-flop in their opinions like a dirty politician.
It was bad enough when gaming journalists showered Skyrim with wonderful reviews when all three versions on all three platforms suffered from some pretty serious bugs. But this thing with Amy is just...bad. If we can't rely on gaming "journalists" to deliver honest previews, why should we trust their reviews, or anything else they say?