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ctothej
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(09-27-2013, 04:39 AM)
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http://zeboyd.com/2013/09/10/why-gam...-gaming-press/

If you're interested, you should read whole article. Robert Boyd articulates the frustration a lot of us have with Metacritic and explains why a lot of great games (The Wonderful 101, Mirror's Edge, etc.) don't get the love they deserve.

The Wonderful 101 is one of the best games to come out this year & is arguably the first truly killer app for the Wii U (though NSMBU was a lot of fun & Zombi U had some interesting ideas). It is also currently averaging around a 78% on Gamerankings.

There are many things that the developers of The Wonderful 101 could have changed to make the game more inviting to the press & general public for that matter but ultimately games like The Wonderful 101 are a poor fit for the gaming press.

The press is even relatively well-equipped to handle competitive skill-focused multi-player games as long as they’re grounded in a well-established genre. Got a FPS to review? Jot down a list of features, compare its level of execution to the most popular games in the genre at the time, and you’re good.

Where it gets to be a lot more hit & miss is when the press is faced with a skill-focused game that doesn’t easily fit into a pre-established category. These are games designed to be played over a period of months, honing your craft & improving your scores & times, not rushed through to see what happens at the end of the story. And if the reviewer doesn’t even realize that this is a skill-focused game and instead thinks that the game is an experienced-focused game because it’s single-player and has a story? Heaven help the developer of that game who is hoping for a good metacritic score because they’re not going to get it.

Now if someone buys a game like this and doesn’t immediately get it, what are they going to do? Well, they have an investment in the game (the money they spent and their desire to enjoy the game) so they’re going to put in the effort to try to get something out of the game. They’ll keep at it until the game’s systems click for them, or they’ll look online at gameplay videos, ask questions on forums, check out a FAQ, etc. Some of them will eventually end up deciding that the game is bad or just not for them, but many of them will eventually end up enjoying the game. And if they end up enjoying the game, they may stick with the game and compete on the leaderboards, try to 100% the game, get all the achievements, etc.

Contrast this with your typical reviewer. They’re pressed for time so they’re unlikely to really master any of the games that they have to review. They’re unlikely to connect with other fans of the game or look up hints & strategies (and for that matter, hints & strategies may not even exist online since they may have the game pre-release). In short they have no incentive to try to get the most out of a game. In fact, they may even feel like putting any extra effort into a game may taint their “unbiased” viewpoint.

Richie
Member
(09-27-2013, 04:46 AM)
Agree wholeheartedly. W101 seems destined to inhabit "Most Underrated Games Of The Generation" type lists some years from now.
I also expect some outlets to re-review the game down the line and give it the fair shake it deserves.
For that matter, ZombiU qualifies also.
Last edited by Richie; 09-27-2013 at 04:48 AM.
Darryl
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(09-27-2013, 04:49 AM)
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This extends to party games like Wii Sports and Nintendo Land as well. Those games can't exactly sit around on the reviewers shelves waiting for a friend or family gathering to pop up and see how well it clicks. They just have to guess and it's hard to guess whether a party game is going to click with parties or not. Some real stab in the dark reviews for those games. These days I don't really know how far I should trust them - I'm still debating on Game & Wario, for example. Reviews for games seems as pointless as reviews for music. Just a huge waste of time but something that has to be done regardless.
Man-is-Obsolete
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(09-27-2013, 04:49 AM)
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Most review scores are decided before the game has even started. Or better, the starting point of the review is set before hand. GTA gets to start at a 10 and get whittled down while others start at 7/8 and have a tough climb ahead of them and shortcomings are more glaring.

One only needs to listen to podcasts to see how uninterested the people reviewing games are in most games.
taoofjord
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(09-27-2013, 04:52 AM)
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There are plenty of games that just deserve more than a rushed play through to put a score on it. Strategy games, for example.
TOYCOFFIN
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(09-27-2013, 04:53 AM)
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OR, a majority of people just aren't huge fans of the game? I mean if he was right, it'd translate into amazing sales.
JoeFenix
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(09-27-2013, 04:54 AM)
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Platinum cycle. Every. Single. Time.
Treythalomew
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(09-27-2013, 04:55 AM)
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This is why I rarely look to reviews for games. I don't beat GTA 5 in a weekend and I don't finish sports games in a week. Things that seem repetitive when played for 10 hour stretches aren't bad when played in 2-3 hour periods.
RadarScope1
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(09-27-2013, 04:56 AM)
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This describes an issue with many, many games today, not just TW101.
Last edited by RadarScope1; 09-27-2013 at 06:14 AM.
Htown
STOP SHITTING ON MY MOTHER'S HEADSTONE
(09-27-2013, 04:57 AM)
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Originally Posted by TOYCOFFIN

OR, a majority of people just aren't huge fans of the game? I mean if he was right, it'd translate into amazing sales.

what planet are you living on, and how do I get on the space bus to that wonderful world?
bigboss370
Junior Member
(09-27-2013, 04:57 AM)
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once in a while though there's something like Demons' Souls that gets 90 metacritic >_>
JohnsonUT
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(09-27-2013, 04:57 AM)
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Originally Posted by TOYCOFFIN

I mean if he was right, it'd translate into amazing sales.

Not sure how you jumped to this conclusion. Plenty of good games do not sell well. Plenty of bad games do sell well.
Zoramon089
Banned
(09-27-2013, 05:00 AM)
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Originally Posted by TOYCOFFIN

OR, a majority of people just aren't huge fans of the game? I mean if he was right, it'd translate into amazing sales.

This doesn't seem to have any basis in reality
EXPotemkin
Junior Member
(09-27-2013, 05:01 AM)
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You really shouldn't put a lot of stock in those reviewers. The majority of them don't even have any type of degree like a film critic does.

Then there's the obvious bias from a lot of reviewers in favor of a certain genre or franchise and of course publishers buying ad space on said websites.
noobasuar
Banned
(09-27-2013, 05:01 AM)
Yup I wholeheartly agree. I haven't taken reviews seriously in years.
JazzmanZ
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(09-27-2013, 05:02 AM)
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Originally Posted by TOYCOFFIN

OR, a majority of people just aren't huge fans of the game? I mean if he was right, it'd translate into amazing sales.

By that logic Bayonetta should of been a multi million seller
DarthOrange
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(09-27-2013, 05:04 AM)
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This is why we can't have nice things. Damn press sneak fucks.
Xanathus
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(09-27-2013, 05:04 AM)
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And this is exactly why I never trust the review of someone who is paid to write a game review and/or did not buy the game with their own money. At best the only things you can get from such reviews are non-subjective facts about the game which may help give you an idea of what the game is about, but the opinions written in such reviews hardly ever match up with my own opinions which renders the reviews mostly useless.
TheBaronOfNA
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(09-27-2013, 05:04 AM)
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Originally Posted by JazzmanZ

By that logic Bayonetta should of been a multi million seller

It was a million seller. And was the most successful Platinum developed game. It was just not in the level that Sega wanted to be.
Gsnap
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(09-27-2013, 05:05 AM)
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It's true. And it's not just about W101. Reviewers just don't have time. They really don't. So yeah, it does hurt good games.
Riposte
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(09-27-2013, 05:05 AM)
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Originally Posted by bigboss370

once in a while though there's something like Demons' Souls that gets 90 metacritic >_>

Demon's Souls had a lot of built up hype before hand from importers and such. Dark Souls had Demon's Souls. Reviewers knew what to expect and reacted accordingly. (Probably they thought something like: "Oh! I'm suppose to make an exception and act like I can handle frustration".) This probably sounds reasonable to some people, but I think it makes reviewers sound like idiots on the wrong side of the reviewer/consumer relationship.
DarthOrange
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(09-27-2013, 05:08 AM)
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Originally Posted by Darryl

This extends to party games like Wii Sports and Nintendo Land as well. Those games can't exactly sit around on the reviewers shelves waiting for a friend or family gathering to pop up and see how well it clicks. They just have to guess and it's hard to guess whether a party game is going to click with parties or not. Some real stab in the dark reviews for those games. These days I don't really know how far I should trust them - I'm still debating on Game & Wario, for example. Reviews for games seems as pointless as reviews for music. Just a huge waste of time but something that has to be done regardless.


Game & Wario is pretty great if there are other people who would also be playing it on your system and you have high scores to compare and try to beat. Three of the four multiplayer minigames are also really good and way more casual friendly than the stuff in Nintendo Land (the music multiplayer game is not very good).
Last edited by DarthOrange; 09-27-2013 at 05:13 AM.
Nirolak
Mrgrgr
(09-27-2013, 05:08 AM)
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Honestly I feel I notice this more with GOTY awards than reviews.

When being assigned a game in a genre they don't understand, especially under notable time pressure, sometimes reviewers will just assume the best of the game to the point of insanity (hello Empire: Total War).

However, when we get around to GOTY voting, it's often incredibly hard for a title based around co-operative multiplayer, competitive gaming, or a systems driven design to have good odds of winning because it's not something that every journalist can pick up and immediately have a good time with unless they have friends with similar interests, an interest in honing a specific competitive skillset, or a want to dig into the unique interlocking mechanics of a title that may otherwise seem foreboding and/or directionless.

Thus, almost everything that wins GOTY is a game that has an experiential and/or cinematic, accessible singleplayer campaign. Some level of systems design (like in open world games) is workable, but it needs to live strictly in the framework of the former (like say a Rockstar game does, but Minecraft won't).
TheBaronOfNA
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(09-27-2013, 05:08 AM)
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I will be honest:

This defense was the same one that PA used to defend AssCreed 1 lukewarm reception.

So dunno if is just the "silly reviewers" what happens with some of the "under serving " games
Cheddahz
Member
(09-27-2013, 05:09 AM)
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I'll tweet this thread to the dude, so he can come in here to talk about this
Somnid
Corporate Ballwasher
Ignore everything I say
(09-27-2013, 05:09 AM)
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The original Style Savvy had this problem as well, not that it was hard, it simply wasn't of interest to the insular "hardcore" reviewer community. In that case it simply wasn't reviewed at all. Trendsetters got slightly better coverage but only because by then it was established.

It's like reverse Hollywood. Reviewers flock to the high-budget drivel but have seriously neglected some of the more interesting but perhaps under-the-radar titles. It's depressing especially to see games like Steamworld dig get so few reviews, some known-quantity PSN port would literally get 2-3 times as many reviews.
GON.
Member
(09-27-2013, 05:09 AM)
I never even glance at reviews for character action games. No point, article sums up why nicely.
Mory Dunz
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(09-27-2013, 05:10 AM)
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It's not only about W101.

It's about games that are unique and can't be easily categorized, so it's hard for a reviewer to quickly assess the game with nothing to compare it to.
Kai Dracon
Writing a dinosaur space opera symphony
(09-27-2013, 05:10 AM)
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Originally Posted by Man-is-Obsolete

Most review scores are decided before the game has even started. Or better, the starting point of the review is set before hand. GTA gets to start at a 10 and get whittled down while others start at 7/8 and have a tough climb ahead of them and shortcomings are more glaring.

One only needs to listen to podcasts to see how uninterested the people reviewing games are in most games.

In my experience this is an ugly, ugly truth. I've listened to so many people, both on podcasts and elsewhere, essentially drip contempt in their tone for a game they've been handed that they simply don't care about.

Plus, in relation to TW101 specifically, I've been unsettled - yet not really surprised - to witness the creeping narrative of "look, I want to feel challenged by a game, but I just don't have time to you know, "be" "challenged". Ain't nobody got time for that, that's not what games are about. We've moved on." Listened to one jackass on a podcast say almost exactly that. (He did literally say games have moved on.)
brandonh83
(09-27-2013, 05:11 AM)
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I finished it today and this rings true for me at least. It's easily one of the best games I've played this year and IMO is the definitive example of a pure videogame. Sure it has plenty of cutscenes and dialogue and story, but it handles it in a way that is charming, memorable, funny, but without pretending like it's another form of media. Games like Beyond and The Last of Us are super impressive visually and even down to the writing, but as videogames they just don't really hook me (judging by the Beyond demo and Heavy Rain). It's totally OK for those types of games to exist and they definitely have a place, but games like Wonderful 101 are sort of like, oh yeah, this is why I love videogames in the first place.

Originally Posted by Kai Dracon

Plus, in relation to TW101 specifically, I've been unsettled - yet not really surprised - to hear the creeping narrative of "look, I want to feel challenged by a game, but I just don't have time to you know, "be" "challenged". Ain't nobody got time for that, that's not what games are about. We've moved on." Listened to one jackass on a podcast say almost exactly that. (He did literally say games have moved on.)

Well, Wonderful 101 has a continue screen so obviously that's its first mistake.
The Power Of Snap
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(09-27-2013, 05:11 AM)
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Gsnap
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(09-27-2013, 05:13 AM)
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Originally Posted by Kai Dracon

In my experience this is an ugly, ugly truth. I've listened to so many people, both on podcasts and elsewhere, essentially drip contempt in their tone for a game they've been handed that they simply don't care about.

Plus, in relation to TW101 specifically, I've been unsettled - yet not really surprised - to hear the creeping narrative of "look, I want to feel challenged by a game, but I just don't have time to you know, "be" "challenged". Ain't nobody got time for that, that's not what games are about. We've moved on." Listened to one jackass on a podcast say almost exactly that. (He did literally say games have moved on.)

What podcast? That's sounds like a weird discussion and I'd like to hear it. lol
TheBaronOfNA
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(09-27-2013, 05:13 AM)
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Originally Posted by brandonh83

I finished it today and this rings true for me at least. It's easily one of the best games I've played this year and IMO is the definitive example of a pure videogame. Sure it has plenty of cutscenes and dialogue and story, but it handles it in a way that is charming, memorable, funny, but without pretending like it's another form of media. Games like Beyond and The Last of Us are super impressive visually and even down to the writing, but as videogames they just don't really hook me (judging by the Beyond demo and Heavy Rain). It's totally OK for those types of games to exist and they definitely have a place, but games like Wonderful 101 are sort of like, oh yeah, this is why I love videogames in the first place.

Well, some people have, for better or worse, the reaction of "that's why I play video games" with the Last of Us. Some people have another expectations with the medium.
akachan ningen
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(09-27-2013, 05:15 AM)
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Another reason why the gaming press doesn't need to exist.
TheBaronOfNA
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(09-27-2013, 05:16 AM)
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Originally Posted by akachan ningen

Another reason why the gaming press doesn't need to exist.

Because they don't like the things that I like?
Kai Dracon
Writing a dinosaur space opera symphony
(09-27-2013, 05:16 AM)
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Originally Posted by Gsnap

What podcast? That's sounds like a weird discussion and I'd like to hear it. lol

It was a long quote edited into this podcast I think. But I don't know who was speaking when they started going on about how they don't want to suffer challenge, and would rather the game make them feel as if they were accomplishing something.
bigboss370
Junior Member
(09-27-2013, 05:16 AM)
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Originally Posted by Riposte

Demon's Souls had a lot of built up hype before hand from importers and such. Dark Souls had Demon's Souls. Reviewers knew what to expect and reacted accordingly. (Probably they thought something like: "Oh! I'm suppose to make an exception and act like I can handle frustration".) This probably sounds reasonable to some people, but I think it makes reviewers sound like idiots on the wrong side of the reviewer/consumer relationship.

i don't remember demon's souls having hype, quite the opposite.
Cheddahz
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(09-27-2013, 05:16 AM)
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Originally Posted by brandonh83

I finished it today and this rings true for me at least. It's easily one of the best games I've played this year and IMO is the definitive example of a pure videogame. Sure it has plenty of cutscenes and dialogue and story, but it handles it in a way that is charming, memorable, funny, but without pretending like it's another form of media. Games like Beyond and The Last of Us are super impressive visually and even down to the writing, but as videogames they just don't really hook me (judging by the Beyond demo and Heavy Rain). It's totally OK for those types of games to exist and they definitely have a place, but games like Wonderful 101 are sort of like, oh yeah, this is why I love videogames in the first place.

I agree with you about this. I recently completed GTAV and while I really enjoyed it, it felt more like a movie to me than a game and honestly, I never go back to play games like that again. I watched my girlfriend play Heavy Rain and after seeing her beat it, I had no desire to play it myself.

Games that act like interactive movies are great and all, but I just want to play a game for fun, not "movie storytelling" and such
brandonh83
(09-27-2013, 05:17 AM)
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Originally Posted by TheBaronOfNA

Well, some people have, for better or worse, the reaction of "that's why I play video games" with the Last of Us. Some people have another expectations with the medium.

Like I said, that's fine. I appreciate those games and even enjoy them to some degree. I'm talking about my own experience with the game; I can't vouch for anyone else but myself. I just know that during my time with the game it reminded me of games I grew up on, that were all about the gameplay but also had a story and dialogue and colorful characters. Again it's totally cool for different kinds of experiences to exist; I want them to. They have a place and I enjoy them, but I'm speaking in relation to this game as the article leans on it as a title that, I feel anyway, is a title that the industry needs more of. Games like TLOU and GTAV get tons of attention and fair enough, they're incredibly amazing games-- but I don't like that games like Wonderful 101 are getting largely ignored simply because it isn't some super graphically amazing, cinematic experience.
TheBaronOfNA
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(09-27-2013, 05:18 AM)
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Originally Posted by bigboss370

i don't remember demon's souls having hype, quite the opposite.

It got mediocre reviews, even with Famitsu (compare their Demon's Souls score with the Dark Souls one)
Atomski
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(09-27-2013, 05:18 AM)
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Didn't Dark Souls review decently?
NewGame
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(09-27-2013, 05:18 AM)
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If is was a journalist who was bad at games to the point of not actually being able to play them I would quit my job out of self disgust.
ohlawd
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(09-27-2013, 05:19 AM)
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Originally Posted by TheBaronOfNA

Because they don't like the things that I like?

We wouldn't have this problem if people liked the right things.

Shame.
Kai Dracon
Writing a dinosaur space opera symphony
(09-27-2013, 05:19 AM)
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The press reception of Demon's Souls and Dark Souls almost stick out as a glitch this generation. I dunno; with the way those games are talked about and name-dropped so much. Sometimes I feel as if the gaming press is proud of them because they give you street cred if you say you played them.

Then it's right back to business as usual, heh.
Sushen
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(09-27-2013, 05:19 AM)
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Originally Posted by Man-is-Obsolete

Most review scores are decided before the game has even started. Or better, the starting point of the review is set before hand. GTA gets to start at a 10 and get whittled down while others start at 7/8 and have a tough climb ahead of them and shortcomings are more glaring.

One only needs to listen to podcasts to see how uninterested the people reviewing games are in most games.

So true. Many reviewer fit their review to the score they like to give intentionally and unintentionally. That's why I don't pay attention to scores and try to read how they justify the score.
Skilletor
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(09-27-2013, 05:20 AM)
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I need to go buy this game.
Lunzio
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(09-27-2013, 05:20 AM)
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I certainly agree that this may be the case, however, we must also understand that it's quite unfair for a game to ask you to master it before having any fun. I'm speaking in generalities here, as I haven't played W101 myself.
TOYCOFFIN
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(09-27-2013, 05:21 AM)
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Originally Posted by JohnsonUT

Not sure how you jumped to this conclusion. Plenty of good games do not sell well. Plenty of bad games do sell well.

Originally Posted by Zoramon089

This doesn't seem to have any basis in reality

Originally Posted by JazzmanZ

By that logic Bayonetta should of been a multi million seller

Well, it was a little out there...actually pretty much only in a fantasy world.

But those good games almost exclusively receive good reviews....so for Boyd to say they are a poor fit is baffling.
Skilletor
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(09-27-2013, 05:22 AM)
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Originally Posted by Lunzio

I certainly agree that this may be the case, however, we must also understand that it's quite unfair for a game to ask you to master it before having any fun. I'm speaking in generalities here, as I haven't played W101 myself.

For some people getting better is a huge part of the fun.
LiquidSolid
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(09-27-2013, 05:22 AM)
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Originally Posted by TOYCOFFIN

OR, a majority of people just aren't huge fans of the game? I mean if he was right, it'd translate into amazing sales.

Uh, you realise that's the problem, right? Whether they're a fan of it or not shouldn't matter. It's their job.

Originally Posted by Riposte

Demon's Souls had a lot of built up hype before hand from importers and such. Dark Souls had Demon's Souls. Reviewers knew what to expect and reacted accordingly. (Probably they thought something like: "Oh! I'm suppose to make an exception and act like I can handle frustration".) This probably sounds reasonable to some people, but I think it makes reviewers sound like idiots on the wrong side of the reviewer/consumer relationship.

Could not agree more. If Demon's Souls had released worldwide on day one it would've been panned.

Going forward, I think Platinum Games would be wise to adopt the same strategy. Release their games only in Japan, let importers hype them up and discuss what their games do both right and wrong before reviewers touch them and then release the western versions.

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