DragonKnight (User)

  • Contributor
  • 7 bubbles
  • 9 in CRank
  • Score: 149660
"I don't care about bubbles. Seriously, I don't."

DmC and How it Brought Out Some Curiosities of the Gaming World

DragonKnight | 644d ago
User blog

It's no secret what I think of DmC. I've actually commented FAR too much on it lately. I've allowed zeal to overcome the sense of direction I had when first starting to talk about what's wrong with the game. To that end, I'm not going to comment on DmC review articles anymore unless the reviewer has a general douchebag tone about them. I only do myself, and those gamers who have real issues with the game, a major disservice by acting so zealously.

But moving on from that, I want to talk about how the reviews for this game have shown, at least to me, that the review system in common use is probably more broken now than everyone was saying it was at the beginning of this gen. If you look at reviews for DmC, setting aside the final score, you'll see mentions of how the combat is easier to get into than the previous titles, the game is more streamlined and accessible for new players, and the story.. well I'm not going to touch on that.

Let's assume that these are legitimate and good points for the game at least from a new audience perspective. My question is, why is it good for DmC but not good for other games? I've used this example a lot, but Ninja Gaiden 3 was a game that was hammered for doing the same thing that DmC has done. Complaints against Ninja Gaiden 3's streamlined and accessible combat, non-consistent difficulty curve that saw the game being exponentially easier than the previous games in the franchise at normal levels, yet vastly increasing the difficulty on higher levels to unfair levels (Hell or Hell mode in DmC has Dante dying if he gets hit), and unwelcome story elements like Ryu removing his mask were some of the things everyone, including reviews, hated about the game.

When things like this happened, regardless of the game, earlier in this console generation, all you could see were people talking about inconsistent reviewing and some games getting free passes and how the review system was broken and needed to change. What happened since then?

And honestly, do even half of these reviewers understand the weight they put behind the numbers they use to score a game? If you score a game a 9.5 out of 10, there better be practically no bad points in your review, and if there are then they'd better be so minute that you have to admit that it's just you being picky. If you score a game a 1, the opposite is true. The numbered score system this gen has become very padded and inflated. How can you say that you don't like the story of the game, and the gameplay feels too easy to you, and yet give the game a 9?

I was thinking about this for a few days, mostly because I couldn't fathom how DmC was getting 9s, but I remembered reviews from way back in the beginning of the gen that were just as bad. The one that really comes to mind for me was when one of the reviewers at Gamespot gave Ratchet and Clank Future: Tools of Destruction a 7 out of 10 and had the complaint that the game had "too much variety" in the weapons. Now, too much variety DOES exist, usually in the form of customization options that just bore you to death looking through them all. However, Ratchet and Clank is a series all about the varied weapons, so unless there are redundancies then there's really no such thing as "too much variety" is there?

Then there's the User Scores on Metacritic. There is really no point in even going there to find useful scores. You will find either so many 0s or so many 10s you can't gauge the worth of a game based on that. It's just not possible unless you're willing to read through every single review looking for a decent one. And Metacritic knows that that feature is being abused and they still keep it up there. I'm certain they've had complaints on it. They really should just remove it.

So what do you think. Even disregarding DmC's reviews at all, do you think that the review system in place works? Or is it really just filled with a lot of ignorant people, padding numbers so they get recognized and obtain lots of traffic? I would love to see examples of other games (not DmC or RE6) that you just couldn't believe the review score on, I'm sure there's plenty.

But yeah, no more DmC article comments from me unless they are replies or the author is a douche.

zerocrossing  +   642d ago
I completely agree, regardless of my feelings towards DmC I found the reviews scores it received during its release ridiculous (9s & 10s) I mean even if you really like the game it's got too much holding it back to be worthy of such a score.

I'm not sure if the reviewers were just going for hits but bashing those of the original fanbase who dislike DmC was cheap and un-professional, reviews are supposed to be objective, trying to make the readers aware of all the pros and cons and only then should a genuine, non biased review score be given.

Well at least that's how I think it should be done.
Blacktric  +   642d ago
"So what do you think. Even disregarding DmC's reviews at all, do you think that the review system in place works? Or is it really just filled with a lot of ignorant people, padding numbers so they get recognized and obtain lots of traffic?"

It's the latter for the most part really. I'm fairly sure that most of those scores are given thanks to Capcom's deep pockets or threats made to smaller media outlets that need free game handouts from companies to review games. They already learned their lesson regarding the power and influence of the media thanks to Resident Evil 5 (which still sold fairly well), Operation Raccoon City and Resident Evil 6. And think about how well movies and games that surprise the critics usually do in terms of sales after getting ton of negative hype from tons of people. Also please don't come to me with the typical half assed rebuttals like "lol every review out there is paid then?" or "you are being a conspiracy theorist" and then give me quotes from fantastic individuals from inside the industry itself like Geoff Keighley, Greg Miller (or anyone else from IGN for that matter) and Adam Sessler before he left G4 for good. You are free to believe whatever you want to and free to offer a proper rebuttal as long as it's not some logical fallacy like a negative proof, claiming that "there's no proof regarding how most of the positive reviews are written by sellouts or people who accept bribes of any kind and thus it can't be true that they are sellouts until proven otherwise".

And honestly, I never thought there was anything wrong with the current "system" in place for reviews and scores. It's always the reviewers that warp it to their liking. And that's why I've never trusted a review since the end of last console generation.

And as a side note; DmC never deserved more than a 7 or 8 at the best (depending on how "great" your taste is). And you can keep blaming people for not being open minded enough to "get" it or just being a plain old hater for all you want. It's just not an excuse for an unintentionally dumbed down storytelling, horrid character development and mediocre gameplay topped with other elements aimed to pander to the both the lowest common denominator and fans of the old series. And yes, I am saying this as someone who invested in more than 15 hours into the PS3 version with my friend.
#2 (Edited 642d ago ) | Agree(5) | Disagree(1) | Report | Reply
listenkids  +   642d ago
Everyone gets paid off to write good reviews about shit games, I'm not ignorant, let's rant.

Peace.
SeraphimBlade  +   642d ago
Really? I didn't get that memo when I wrote for a gaming news site...
DragonKnight  +   642d ago
@zerocrossing: That's what I'm thinking too. I mean, I am not saying ALL reviews have been bought, I would think the only ones that would be bought are those of high profile reviewers with partnership deals. It's simply a bad business decision to try and pay off every reviewer out there. I'm also sure that some reviewers are trying to make a name for themselves as well with this game given all of its attention. What I am concerned with is that there is no accountability, and no actual standard for reviewing games. A real system needs to be put in place. I mean, we have a better rating system for games than we do for reviewing.

If numbers are to be used, I believe it should be a 1 to 5 system, no half numbers, 1 means utter garbage everyone should avoid, 5 is an absolutely masterful experience (doesn't mean perfect) that everyone should try, 3 is an average, 2 is below average but above garbage and you likely won't enjoy it even if it has SOME good things, and 4 is above average but missing that certain something that makes it a complete masterpiece. Then you'd be able to weed out the real reviewers from the ones who are just reviewing it for their own gain.

@Blacktric: As I said to zero, I don't think ALL reviews were "bought" (and bought doesn't mean cash exchanging hands, it could mean exclusive first looks, early access, no blacklisting threats, etc..) but when a game like DmC scores positively for what a game like Ninja Gaiden 3 scored negatively for, I call a foul. And I also call foul for the amount of 9's and 10's being thrown around because I seriously doubt many of the reviewers truly understand the weight behind those numbers. Or if they do, they are either trolling or using the numbers for recognition given the traffic this game will generate to their site.

It's unfortunate that there are those out there that would allow reviews to help them decide which games to buy, as reviews simply can't be trusted when you look at all the potential shenanigans that could be happening behind the curtains.
#4 (Edited 642d ago ) | Agree(3) | Disagree(2) | Report | Reply
rainslacker  +   642d ago
The only issue I think with the way you wrote this blog is that you are using DMC as an example. I know your personal views on this based on your posts elsewhere, and I understand them, but this issue is endemic of an entire system and not just DMC. I understand though what your trying to compare given the NG3 correlation.

However...given the sheer number of positive reviews, I'm finding it hard to believe that it is Capcom "paying off" reviewers. Some of them may be that, although it's probably not as sinister as it sounds. There could be a lot of things being done which affect different sites in different ways is the best way I can put it shortly.

I think the bigger issue is not lack of consistency, but rather the absolute ease with which a game can get a perfect score nowadays, along with the obvious bias that is prevalent within some reviewers own articles. Today a perfect score is practically meaningless, when before this gen is was a very rare and special thing, reserved for better than the best, and even then still hard to obtain. It makes me wonder...have we lowered our standards, because I don't think it's that games have become substantially better overall.

Looking back on this generation, many games were not deserving of a perfect score. Some of those that got perfect scores were probably 9 or 9.5, but most would likely be better suited to having an 7 or 8.

While entirely subjective, the only games I personally played that I feel deserve a 10 would be Uncharted 2 and Arkham Asylum. I'm sure more exists, but can't say since I may not have played them.

On top of that we have bias infecting our culture to massive degrees. Console bias is obvious, but less obvious is genre bias, or even origin bias(ie western vs. Japanese). JRPG's in particular have been hit pretty hard this gen although many of them have been amazing compared to last gen.

I've never, in my entire life, like the score system for reviews, or movies for that matter. It offers nothing of substance to judge a game on. It's a lazy way for people to determine if a game is worth playing without learning anything behind what makes that number relevant in the first place. As such, I think just changing what the number's represent wouldn't change anything at all, simply because it will still be used the same way.

I have another response down below in response to your actual article if you care to read it.
Nate-Dog  +   642d ago
I have been keeping an eye on the whole DMC debacle like most people I imagine but I have never really played any games of the series so I wasn't particularly on this or that side. But I agree completely. I kept a close eye on most of the initial review scores that came out and someone else pointed out to me that many of the 8.5-9.5 scores involved complaints on things such as the story and voice-acting (or if they didn't they probably should have considering what I have seen of it, but that's subjective I suppose so I ought not to go into that). But anyway I concur, it seems like reviews have just jumped from one extreme to the other, at one stage they tended to receive quite low scores and everyone was a critic as the saying goes, but now, even with criticisms or with reviewers basically saying that this or that game is OK and does what it does well but doesn't really add that much to what was seen before how can these reviews amount to scores of 9+? It's bizarre really but it's just another aspect of some of the bad trends affecting the industry now and one which the vast majority of gamers just accept, so it'll stay presumably.
Flatbattery  +   642d ago
I can't fathom how anybody can take a review seriously anymore, the double standards are astronomical making review scores meaningless.

The gaming media are almost on a par with the tabloid rags when it comes to integrity. There are exceptions, but they are lost in a sea of slime. It seems that all they are interested in is being the catalyst of gamer infighting rather than a source of helpful and informative information.
caseh  +   642d ago
^ This.

Too many reviews which demonstrate double standards these days.

As the blog author stated, NG3 gets slated for making the game more accessible, DMC gets praised. No consistency

For me its the whole RE review situation that made me think 'what the fu...'. RE5 wasn't really slated and got high reviews across the board. RE6 improved upon RE5 but got SLAMMED for stepping away from its roots, something RE5 had already done in case 99% of the people who reviewed it missed that fact.

I went beyond caring a long time ago, I can watch a video of a game on Youtube or gaming site these days and decide if its worth a look without paying attention to reviews.
#6.1 (Edited 642d ago ) | Agree(3) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
rainslacker  +   642d ago
Gaming news and reviews on the internet have gone from being big respected sites, to being mostly blogs and big sites that can only survive if they produce sensationalized articles. The voices of the good reviewers go unheard, particularly on here, because of this sensationalism.

The user blog has made a mockery of real journalism. Since the big sites can't make it without ad revenue, they have devolved into being as irrelevant as the bloggers. Good sites with good articles, or big scoops, often get looked down upon as they also have an equal or greater number of fluff articles.

Throughout the history of gaming there have always been controversial reviews. It's nothing new. The very nature of a review is subjective, and opinion vary wildly.

However, I see a problem with your actual logic, although it was well thought out. You are placing a blanket statement over the entire review process, assuming that one reviewer gives a free pass, and then trashes a game that does the exact same thing later on (or vice versa). You are applying this across all reviewers, instead of focusing on specific individuals. I know it's easier to make your point this way, and that point is valid, but there are times when you have to qualify statements such as this in order to point out those that do it positively to show that it can be done.

Most of the major sites have several reviewers, or use free lancers. Sometimes the big sites even post user reviews which people assume are from the site itself. I personally don't want a sites preference clouding any review. It is up to the editor to ensure that the review simply meets their standards for grading and writing.

Good reviewers are generally consistent in their opinions, and it's those that you have to look for. When you find one, if their opinion often matches your own, you stick to them to find the reviews that you want.

As far as user reviews on MetaCritic...I don't want to see them removed. I believe for less popular or less hyped games they are very good at getting real opinions on games, particularly since major sites, and even less bloggers, give them much notice. JRPGs have taken a beating in reviews this gen because of the bias that exists.

Is the review process broken? Yes and No. It all comes down to the standards that the particular site sets for it's review process.

Looking back, print magazines had pretty high standards for their reviews, and it was on par with the way movie critics wrote. It made a decision, then backed up that decision with real information pertaining to how the game played, looked, sounded. etc. Some consideration was given to how it made you feel to play it, but a bulk of the content was based on real quantifiable, albeit subjective, analysis of the game. They almost always posted the positive and the negative, and it was common to see "despite how good the game is...here are the flaws", and then it would mention how those flaws affected the actual score. Now it seems to be one way or the other, or major breaking flaws are overlooked, or worse yet given a pass for whatever reason.

Then of course you have the ones that have completely useless scores which obviously are nothing but ways to stir up hits...but if you really look closely, they get the most attention. In some ways it's the community allowing this to happen. Same with the sensationalism. If we gave more focus to the articles/reviews which do things right (whether a positive story, or constructively critical discussion) in a intelligent and mature manner, then the media for hobby will be forced to change to survive. It's idealistic, and unlikely to happen, but if we stop feeding the trolls, they will eventually go someplace else.
ZoyosJD  +   642d ago
I strongly believe that the review system entirely should be replaced with a game suggestion system.

The thing is that we are all unique individuals with different tastes (although your previous rants and pms would lead me to believe you think otherwise).

So, i prepose a system not where each game is given a score, but where every game is given a place on your "suggestion list".

Now, i know you cant directly predict what someone will like the most, but you can compare any gamers tastes to that of any millions of gamers that are just as much individuals as you are.

By simply placing your scores for games you've played at the center of a bell curve and finding other gamers that rate games as close to that of your own scores, their most highly rated games can move up on your suggestion list.

All it would take is a single score to get you moving in the right direction initially.

Reviews for those that wish to do them should only supplement this process.

Ranking a game 0 or 10 only impacts those that tend to agree with you so there is no harm done if someone tries to abuse the system.

The only problem i see is initial support, which can be overcome.

I think gamers deserve better than "It's a bad game - fact."
TheBlackSmoke  +   642d ago
My god, do you actually listen to yourself?, do you know the meaning of hypocrisy and irony? Your Blog is basically calling out the credibility of DmC reviews when you yourself have rejected the game from the start and most importantly.... YOU HAVEN'T PLAYED THE GAME. A person with extreme negative bias and who has not actually played the game is supposed to be trusted over an entire industry of people who review games for a living? How are you credible? Your opinion on reviews of this game mean absolutely nothing. You can criticise his appearance all day, its subjective ( although I know its just about the hair) but you cannot review the game until you play it. period.

now dont get me wrong, I dont always agree with INDIVIDUAL reviews either , but for the most part if a game is getting all around good scores then the general consensus is that the game is probably good.

But what makes it even more ridiculous is the FACT that there are significantly more positive reviews from non metacritic/big sites with nothing to gain then there are from the so called paid off mainstream reviewers. Infact if a site was looking for hits they would be low balling the game instead of wholeheartedly agreeing its good because they know they could easily attract the tin foil hat brigade. If Capcom was in the business of paying off reviewers dont you think they would of done it for Resident Evil 6?, their biggest game, instead of Devil may cry, a reboot for a franchise they had run out of ideas for.

Using Ninja Gaiden 3 in all of your posts is silly, NG3 is a sequel, a continuation of a series made by the same team with the same engine , same assets, same animations etc etc. DmC is a reboot, a reimagining, built from scratch in a different engine, a westernised interpretation of a japanime based franchise. NG3 was needlessly downgraded on normal difficulty to appeal to casuals (however on higher difficulties the fundamentals of hiding inside invincible frames is still intact and essential for completion). DmC is the first game in a new series, I understood that concept right from the reveal and so I decided to roll with it and see what they come up with instead of expecting the same thing as before.

The problem is your "opinions" are so black and white, If DMC4'S combat is a 10/10 then DmC is 1/10 coz "omg teh easy mode" You could never be a professional reviewer because you cant see anything objectively. In the end I just can't take you seriously, You're either the most self entitled delusional person on n4g or you just trolled the crap out of everyone.
Deadpool616  +   642d ago
I find Dragonknights blog rather insightful. The NG3 example isn't that far fetched. Without Tomonobu Itagaki at the helm of NG3, the direction of the game is considerably different than its predecessors. The same goes for DmC and the Devil May Cry series when Hideki Kamiya left Capcom and became part of Platinum Games. Everyone knows the true successor to Devil May Cry is Bayonetta. DmC is just a decent action hack n slash game using the Devil May Cry name to garner attention and nothing more than that.

As for the scoring system it has been broken for several years now. I stopped relying on numbers when IGN gave GodHand a 3.0 out of 10. The score just didn't make sense at all. I ignored the scores and started paying attention to the content. For example, I have fun with the Dynasty Warriors games, but reviewers rip them apart. They're just bias against "crowd-fighting" action games for some reason, even when they know what they're getting themselves into. They often call them "mindless and repetitive" while other genres get a pass for doing the same thing over and over again. It really just boils down to the reviewers and how they review games.
Whitefox789  +   641d ago
The second you mentioned it was about the hair, you lost all of your credibility.

Me I personally don't approve of people outsourcing their products, I can understand if Capcom wants to have DMC to have a more western appeal (even though majority of their sales for DMC games were from the west anyways). Though if you want to achieve this, they should of done it themselves rather then rely on another game developer. I mean Capcom is a big company it has not only a JPN branch but a US branch and a UK branch. That's all I'm going to say.
#9.2 (Edited 641d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
Roccetarius  +   642d ago
I haven't trusted the review system either for a long time. I always look on gameplay + other details, that way i can see if it's worth it or not. The double standard, like is mentioned here, is simply out of control in the media.

Just some days ago, i saw someone saying that DmC felt like a game made by Platinum Games. I can't count how many facepalms that resulted in.
DragonKnight  +   642d ago
@Rainslacker 1: Well I used DmC as an example because it's the freshest example out there and I also had a little bit I wanted to say about it without going into a whole huge thing about it. I did mention in replies that I don't think Capcom bought off all the reviewers. What I think is most likely is that Capcom incentivized positive reviews for more well known magazines and websites. For the lesser known, it's a combination of trolling reviews, support, and genuine opinion. That's just how I see it. I do agree with you that it's far too easy for games to have really high scores. Like I said, I don't think these sites understand the weight behind the numbers they use, and of course it boils down to some form of bias.

Rainslacker 2: It was much easier to use a blanket argument than a specific one, but also you have to remember that reviews in particular are supposed to represent the site submitting the review. The format is always *Insert Game Name Here* Review *Insert Site Name Here* so it's important to remember that, unless multiple reviews by the same site are posted, the reviews are being used as the representation that said site believes in that score and that's why you'll see reviews appearing on box art and in commercial ads as "9 out of 10 IGN" or "A masterpiece GameInformer." Most of these blogger sites allow the users to post anything any time without needing an editor approval and the only aspect that does require editor approval is if the piece will be featured on the page prominently. A "reviewer" could post a completely terrible reveiw of a great game (and vice versa) and it will be seen as the review for the site even if it was a trolling review. Then there's the instances of reviewers going back on what they said in their own reviews (Skyrim anyone?) after it's shown that what they said is in fact false. Just too many examples of poor reviewing and those reviews being linked to an entire site of individuals that may think differently. Reviews should be highly scrutinized by editors before being published.

@ZoyosJD: Firstly, that dig at me wasn't necessary to get your point across was it? Moving on from that, your system has some merit. Maybe the review could be the following type of format. "What I like about this game" followed by "What I don't like about this game" and then whether the reviewer suggests checking it out or not. The only problem I can see comes from developers/publishers who want to plaster review scores all over their ads and box art to sell their games.

@TheBlackSmoke: Just so you know, I'm replying to you to tell you that I placed you on my ignore list already so I would have to actually want to see what you wrote. I can't imagine ever wanting to read what you wrote, so I didn't and you just wasted your time here unless you made a comment on the actual blog.

@Roccetarius: There's no way you know someone that dense. Really? Someone said that it felt like a Platinum Games creation? I assume you took a copy of Bayonetta and promptly smacked them upside the head with it right?
Whitefox789  +   641d ago
Circa year 2008 never in my life had I seen so many games get so many 10/10 perfect scores.

So in short yes the system is massively inflated.

Add comment

You need to be registered to add comments. Register here or login
Remember