Review Scores and Their Fundamental Flaw

GP Editor, Marcus Estrada discusses his take on review scores and why the current system used by many websites is inherently flawed. What exactly would it take to change it?

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CaptainPunch2692d ago

Personally I review on an Alphabet system, much simpler.

MariaHelFutura2692d ago (Edited 2692d ago )

They need to stop letting people/fanboys pretend to be journalist and just make demos mandatory. Most of the time, a demo will answer all of YOUR questions about the game.

Dan502692d ago

Not if the demo is super old.

CaptainPunch2692d ago

Lol I never thought of myself as a journalist by any means :P When I give my opinion on a movie or a game I give them a letter grade, simple as that!

Rocket Sauce2692d ago

I'd like to see more sites use 4/5 star scales. It's simpler, and critics are more likely to use the full range.

How do you come up with a random score like 8.8? Eight tenths of a point doesn't mean much to me; just give it an 8 or a 9.

NovusTerminus2692d ago (Edited 2692d ago )

10 - Perfect
9 - Extremely Great
8 - Great
7 - Really Good
6 - Good
5 - Average
4 - Bad
3 - Really Bad
2 - Complete Crap
1 - Unplayable

5 is what an average game, which most people seem to forget, And what knifefight said is right, read the review as a whole. The Pros, Cons and score is not ment to be the whole thing.

Anything above a 5 is good, I think reviewers are to forgiving and just give high scores to not be "bias"

A game with a 5 or 6 can be good fun, it might not be some end all revolution of a game. But it can still be fun and enjoyable.

BrianG2692d ago (Edited 2692d ago )

I agree with you, but I tend not to step back and look at the scale as a whole sometimes.

I believe a 5, passing to me, means the game does what it is supposed to do, it works. Anything above is icing on the cake. A good example is Socom 4, currently has a 67 Meta, but it is a GOOD solid game.

Usually I'll have a problem with a low review score if it is unwarranted, or just nit picking.

The main problem with review scores comes when a mediocre game gets a 90 average, and a decent to great game struggles to get above an 80 average. Clearly showing that some reviewers do NOT follow the scale. Which in the end makes the whole scale pointless, maybe another system would be better.

NovusTerminus2692d ago

Truthfully I think that if a site does not consistently follow the scale THEY chose to use, then I won't listen to their opinion. As Son_Lee said, EDGE gets torn apart by people because a game might get a lower score, however they never say it is a bad game.

Persistantthug2692d ago

That's an F....a big fat F.

And Personally, I haven't seen any METACRITIC 90'ish scoring games that didn't deserve their great scores...not 1.

Can you show me one?

BrianG2692d ago


lol, I actually went to some nice schools. But I suppose I didn't think that all the way through. However in some of my college classes our grades were split, starting at different points. In some a 50 would be a D, in others a 90 would be a B, making only 95 and above an A.

Either way, a 5 out of 10 to mean means the game works. Anything below is borderline unplayable or just horrid.

Here's a funny one for you, World of Goo, holding a 98 Meta, 2nd highest rated game EVER. Must be amazing, but the user score is 6.9. 4 critic reviews.

Proving that the review system isn't perfect. Or else everyone would pick this game up, cause it is better than every game out this year and last so far.

Peaceful_Jelly2692d ago (Edited 2692d ago )

7 = average

Game reviewers already set the precedent that anything below 7 is garbage. So now they need to add even more numbers between 7 to 10 to give an objective score even though they don't use more than half the scale.

coolbeans2692d ago

I don't think so. On metacritic, 75-90 Generally positive reviews while 50-74 is mixed.

I personally call 5.9 and under "average" (or worse if it's below a 4-ish). Edge's average is a 5 as well.

knifefight2691d ago

Holy crap, you just posted RPG Land's exact review scale....

NovusTerminus2691d ago (Edited 2691d ago )

I promise, I do not work for them! I run my own small site! XP

I promise I have never seen that page before! lol. Nice find and bubbles for you!

CobraKai2692d ago

I would make it simple, no score. Simply: Buy, Rent, or Don't Waste Your Time.

Neckbear2692d ago

Too arbitrary for my tastes. I mean, who are you to hereby proclaim that a game is or is not worth -my- time?

In my opinion, I'd simply ditch all ways to rate a game and, instead, write whatever I thought of it. Let the readers themselves make the choice, with no silly score nor declaration of just -how- much worth a game has.

Son_Lee2692d ago

The problem with reviews is that, especially in this gen, anything below an 8 seems unplayable. This is way beyond the laws of logic. Edge Magazine gets slammed a lot, but they actually USE the WHOLE review spectrum. A 5 is average. In my opinion, anything above a 7 is worth playing. Anything above a 6 is worth checking out if you're into the genre. An 8 or above are must-plays, and 9s and above are must-owns. Really not that hard of a concept to grasp. It's a shame more reviewers don't use the whole grading scale and people nowadays don't know how to grasp it.

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