The New Adventures Of The GAFcast Episode #004 - 08/12/06

Agent Dormer

Dirty Drinking Smoker
#1
Another week, another minty fresh edition of The New Adventures Of The GAFcast. Hey, wait just a second - where's Kohler? Our fiery friend is preoccupied this week and we call on Meier (Jon) to join the regulars - Justin (sp0rks) and David (DCharlie) - for a couple rounds of top-notch videogame discussion. What's on the docket for this week's show? I'm glad you asked:

*The usual "What we've been playing" section with some Dead Rising discussion, as well as a little bit of Knee-Jerk News to warm us up for...
*The Real News/Things That Must Be True segment where we play the numbers game and sink our teeth into the July NPD numbers, talk about the changes to WoW endgame in the expansions, and the possibility of a PSP price cut?
*And our topic of the week, which is bound to surprise some of you. I'd say more... but I can't spoil it or the other guys would kill me! Also, we talk about your responses to last week's QotW (thanks a lot again for those, posters!), and serve up another question for the next show.

Total Runtime: 01:07:24
Size: 35.3MB

The New Adventures Of The GAFcast Episode #004 - 08/12/06
 

Y2Kev

TLG Fan Caretaker Est. 2009
Jul 6, 2005
91,412
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#17
:lol :lol :lol :lol :lol :lol

CREEPY FASCINATION WITH ZIFF-DAVIS :lol :lol :lol

Is that Kohler singing in the background? MONEYHATS FOR MICROSOFT :lol
 
Oct 27, 2004
103,739
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Nowhere, PA
#25
~QUESTION OF THE WEEK (8/12/06)~

1. Who do you trust in terms of videogame reviews?

There's always a few people that I talk to personally and on the internet that I tend to agree with... they're not typically associated with publications. If I see one of these people saying "Yes, this game was great" I'd definitely have my attention pulled. However, it's rare when I see this happen in a videogame review. I find it all so political, so it's a distraction... and in the end, sometimes they are either too critical or not critical enough and so it's easier to rely on people who share some of my same tastes (dark10x, for instance, is someone who has an opinion I value).

2. Is there any way videogame reviewers could gain your trust back (so that you're not just looking for numbers, and you're reading text, etc...)?

In the end, it's a difficult thing to ask especially on any large scale. I would be happy if review scores themselves were heavily stripped down, and the text emphasized. A paragraph for game reviews just isn't enough, for instance. You can't explain enough about a title with that.

I think it's close to impossible, though.
 

Y2Kev

TLG Fan Caretaker Est. 2009
Jul 6, 2005
91,412
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#27
1. Who do you trust in terms of videogame reviews?

I, despite the shitstorm over UGnG, have always favored Jeremy (aka ToastyFrog) and Shane from ZD because we have similar tastes. My most trusted GAF person right now is duckroll. He has never led me astray. I completely dislike most magazine reviews because they are entirely too short. EGM's 60 word 2nd and 3rd opinion reviews are just not substantial enough to justify a score.

2. Is there any way videogame reviewers could gain your trust back (so that you're not just looking for numbers, and you're reading text, etc...)?

I don't think I have a comment yet. I will sleep on it and edit the post. ;)
 
Jun 7, 2004
4,903
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Bremerton, WA
#28
1. Who do you trust in terms of videogame reviews?

I have my goto guys on GAF. I don't browse GAF as much as I used to (blocked at work now :/ ) so I don't know GAF members as well, but Musashi Rules comes to mind as a trusted source for me. In the media community, I get most of my "review" information from the "Whachyoubeenplayin" segments on Podcasts. Used to be Che on the 1up Show, but he's been replaced by Lukems on 1upyours... who coincidentally is Dead Wrong about Dead Rising. Magazine/Web scores have already become meaningless to me. I don't read them and I just don't care like I used to. Word-of-mouth is a far greater seller.

2. Is there any way videogame reviewers could gain your trust back (so that you're not just looking for numbers, and you're reading text, etc...)?

XBN had it right when they used a 10 point scale. Having Madden at 2 tenths of a point higher than 2k was ****ing annoying. No gamer can discern 2/10ths of a point. Just put me in the ball park and let me figure it out from there. Besides, I'm more likely to read a review with a straight score.
 
Aug 6, 2004
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#29
1. Who do you trust in terms of videogame reviews?

There isn't really one guy who I always agree with really. I generally like 1up reviews quite a bit, and yeah, I like Jeremy Parish too. Usually, because of GAF news and impressions from GAF members I've already made my opinion on a game before the review comes out. Although often I'll read reviews to see if I've missed any details about the final game that I might like or dislike.

2. Is there any way videogame reviewers could gain your trust back (so that you're not just looking for numbers, and you're reading text, etc...)?

I don't read videogame magazines very often, but I read the latest EGM recently, and I was really surprised as to how incredibly short the reviews were. I like the 3 person review crew, but considering that they put hours into playing the game, they should get more than 150 words.

The podcast mentioned the idea that reviews aren't using the entire scale. I've never had a problem with that because I've always figured that the bottom games that would get scores between 1 and 4 simply aren't reviewed. Take some typical GBA shovelware titles for example: Catz and That's so Raven. With Catz, Gamespot didn't even review it, but reader reviews seem to have it placed at about a 1. With That's so Raven, none of the major sites have reviewed it, but according to gamestats.com, fansite reviews have it placed at 46%. These are the games that get the bottom scale, and big reviewers just don't review them because they aren't worth the time.
 
Jun 9, 2004
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#30
1. Who do you trust in terms of videogame reviews?

-There are a handfull of people on GAF that i trust when it comes to game reviews, but ulitimately it does indeed come down to what my interest is in said game. Case in point is that i was really looking forward to MGS2.. it was THE thing to have in 2001 even over GTA3; yet when i played the game it took me by surprise *it wasnt as good as i had hoped* but if i was to just see the review scores for the game they were all pretty high, for me though i would rate it somewhere around the 7 mark. Which by all means is still good just it could have been so much more.

To Finish off the answer, yes i do trust gaffers, namely ironclad, HG, Ram, Prine, Cerrius, Dopey and the rest of my halo 2 crew because i have played with them on live for over 2 years, learning what they like and dont like; they get to learn what i like, which helps all of us in recommending the games to others; But ulimately it is my decision and i wont buy Bullet Witch just because ironclad thinks it might be fun.

2. ( i dont really put too much weight into scores, but if there are valid complaints about the game i would love to actually hear about them)
 
Jun 14, 2006
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#33
Thanks guys for the air time on the topic I mentioned! It was greatly enjoyed and appreciated (though you guys have no idea what you are talking about)!

Is there any way videogame reviewers could gain your trust back (so that you're not just looking for numbers, and you're reading text, etc...)?

I believe there is a standard/general consensus in gaming of what makes a game good. That's why gaming critics exist, critics are suppose to know that standard. You can't call yourself a critic if you don't know what that standard is and where it should be going.

I read game reviews because these professional critics are familar with that standard i'm speaking about. I don't agree with 100% everything they say, but I at times agree with enough to get an idea of what to expect from the game. Of course, there are those times that I disagree strongly with a review. That's why hearing a debate on opinion is so much fun; because there is a general right and wrong to making games that changes with the times.
 
Jun 7, 2004
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#36
They're getting better week by week. I don't know how often you guys talk over skype or if you do dummy runs, but the more you get to know one another, the easier everything will flow. It was kind of awkward at the start but you guys are definitely feeling more at ease with each other and it'll help the tone of the show greatly.

Absolutely loved the skits as well, comedic genius. :)
 

Agent Dormer

Dirty Drinking Smoker
#37
Chibbi Brady said:
They're getting better week by week. I don't know how often you guys talk over skype or if you do dummy runs, but the more you get to know one another, the easier everything will flow. It was kind of awkward at the start but you guys are definitely feeling more at ease with each other and it'll help the tone of the show greatly.

Absolutely loved the skits as well, comedic genius. :)
It's not the fact we do dummy runs per say, it's just that usually that someone forgets to record the first twenty minutes or so, causing us to do a complete restart. It's almost better than alcohol for loosening up everyone!
 
Jun 9, 2004
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www.dyxtra.com
#40
Good job guys, however one thing has been bugging me for a few podcasts now and that is the difference in volume between the participants. For example in this cast DCharlie and Meier spoke rather softly, while Dormer and sp0rsk were much louder. I'm constantly adjusting the volume, but maybe it's just me.

Loved the real GAF heroes :)
 

hyp

Member
Jul 15, 2004
5,574
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#41
1. Who do you trust in terms of videogame reviews?

no one. game reviews are entirely subjective. the combination of personal biases, previous gaming experiences and prejudice influence these reviewers. i don't know what kind of gaming background they have, nor do i know the kind of pressures they face from their superiors or peers when scoring games. most especially, i'm curious about the skill level of these reviewers.... do they really know wtf they're doing and are they even quick to adapt to each genre they play? after watching some video reviews, i doubt it.

if i don't know much about a game, i'm usually quick to research it on the net or read impressions from people on the forum. word of mouth and trusting people whose gaming tastes are similar to mine is the only form of trust i need.

2. Is there any way videogame reviewers could gain your trust back (so that you're not just looking for numbers, and you're reading text, etc...)?

a couple of ways. abandon rating systems. don't rush reviews. play more than the main storyline/mode of games. play the game online extensively. try every game mode and all of the features. i feel that there just isn't enough time spent playing the games. even after a bad initial reaction, is there a diamond in the rough somewhere? this isn't conveyed in most reviews.

but most of all, quit hiring literary snobs and get people who understand games, who aren't quick to judge, and who are passionate about playing them no matter what genre/origin/brand they come from.
 

hyp

Member
Jul 15, 2004
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honolulu
#42
Sander said:
Good job guys, however one thing has been bugging me for a few podcasts now and that is the difference in volume between the participants. For example in this cast DCharlie and Meier spoke rather softly, while Dormer and sp0rsk were much louder. I'm constantly adjusting the volume, but maybe it's just me.

Loved the real GAF heroes :)
i agree. if you guys needs some audio editing help, feel free to ask. :)
 

Agent Dormer

Dirty Drinking Smoker
#44
the year 20XX said:
What's the email address for Question of the Week responses? Or do we just post those now?
You can just post in the thread.

Re: Mic levels. The main difference usually comes from the fact David and Jon had much lower levels throughout (almost to the point where Garage Band wasn't showing any activity!) vs Justin/Chris/Myself where ours are set at a normal level/higher than normal. We're fixing more of this every week. Your continued feedback allows us to produce a better product. Thanks for pointing it out!
 
Jun 6, 2004
66,616
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1,520
Austin, TX
www.last.fm
#47
Agent Dormer said:
You can just post in the thread.

Re: Mic levels. The main difference usually comes from the fact David and Jon had much lower levels throughout (almost to the point where Garage Band wasn't showing any activity!)
Weird, it sounded plenty loud to me on my end. Sorry!
 

elostyle

Never forget! I'm Dumb!
Jul 5, 2005
6,927
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#48
1. Who do you trust in terms of videogame reviews?

I enjoy reading eurogamer's reviews.

2. Is there any way videogame reviewers could gain your trust back (so that you're not just looking for numbers, and you're reading text, etc...)?
Give up reviewing for a perceived audiences and attempts at objectivity.

And to people bitching about reviewer that didn't give their most wanted game a high enough rating - supposedly to just stir up some controversy - just drop it. Most of those reviews have proven to be more accurate than the broad hype concsensus reviews.

Eurogamer's perfect dark zero review.
Gamespot's mario sunshine review.
Parish's new super mario bros. review.
...
 

DCharlie

And even i am moderately surprised
Staff member
Jun 7, 2004
23,294
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#49
And to people bitching about reviewer that didn't give their most wanted game a high enough rating - supposedly to just stir up some controversy - just drop it. Most of those reviews have proven to be more accurate than the broad hype concsensus reviews.
that was me.

I wasn't actually pointing at some of those reviews, i had others in mind.

I still stand by the contention that pro-review sites still have a quandry of balancing reviews and readership levels, nothing stirs up a bit of fun than not giving a good game what the other places are doing.

It's just an opinion! It's not being stated as fact.
As reviews are incredibly personal (my favourite game of this year seems to be constantly hitting that 6.something mark) poeple are always going to debate what scores come out.

At the end of the day, there is only one great reviewer for yourself and that is ... YOURSELF! :D