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Exclusive reviews are ethically troubling

Discussion in 'News & Content Feedback' started by DarkUnderlord, May 5, 2008.

  1. DarkUnderlord Professional Throne Sitter

    DarkUnderlord
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    We've had a few threads here on the Codex forums about the pathetic nature of the gaming review industry. Namely that they're all corrupt and stupid. <a href="http://weblogs.variety.com/the_cut_scene/2008/04/exclusive-revie.html">Now here's an article on Variety which says the same thing</a>:
    <blockquote>I just got an email from an IGN publicist titled "FYI: Exclusive GTA IV Review @ IGN.com, scores 10" alerting me that "IGN.com, the Web's leading videogame and entertainment information destination, has posted the first and only review of Grand Theft Auto IV." I'm reminded of when Game Informer <a href="http://gameinformer.com/NR/exeres/DAF818DF-1429-458B-9033-C5E4C5DF02C3.htm">ran an exclusive review of "Mass Effect"</a> a few weeks before any other outlet and gave that game a 9.75. I was shocked since I really didn't think "Mass Effect" was that great (<a href="http://www.variety.com/review/VE1117935481.html?categoryid=1023&cs=1">and said as much in my review</a>), but of course it's very possible that the Game Informer folks just disagreed with me and that's well within their rights.

    (Though I have to say I still found the <a href="http://gameinformer.com/NR/exeres/DAF818DF-1429-458B-9033-C5E4C5DF02C3.htm">Game Informer review</a> problematic, since they gave "Mass Effect" an almost perfect score despite noting that "most of the skirmishes, which begin and end in the blink of an eye, run into balancing issues, problematic AI, and a difficulty in comprehending what is transpiring" and "it controls admirably, but it doesn't live up to the large stage the story sets or the standards you've come to expect from action games and RPGs." Those are pretty significant faults.)</blockquote>
    The author goes on to state that he personally doesn't trust any review labelled "exclusive". I mean, people trust reviews at all?

    Spotted @ <a href="http://sorcerers.net">Sorcerers.net</a>
     
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  2. Texas Red Whiner

    Texas Red
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    I'd like to spread this message to the unwashed masses but every time I post something "controversial" on their boards I get banned for "trolling". I'm not lying.
     
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  3. elander_ Arbiter

    elander_
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    "The author goes on to state that he personally doesn't trust any review labelled "exclusive". I mean, people trust reviews at all? "

    When the only info we have before buying a game is a crap load of dubious and fabricated reviews there's not much choice in the mater.

    Cautious people wait for someone who is trustable, a friend or an independent site, to review the game and then buy it but a lot of people don't really care that much about games and quality to be picky.
     
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  4. Kingston Arcane

    Kingston
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    Heh, good replies, but the obligatory "You guys who say this isnt 10/10 are idiots look at everything thats in this game absolutly nothing has come close to GTA IV so go back to your Wii's and leave us actual gamers alone."
     
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  5. Nightjed Liturgist

    Nightjed
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    the game media is all over GTAIV making 10s rain all over it, its worse than bukkake porn ..., its the same crap with movies, every freaking time its more expensive and reaches new levels of ultra-suckage but reviews are all "omg! its sooooo goooood i soiled myself"
     
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  6. Gnidrologist CONDUCTOR

    Gnidrologist
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    From the comments:
     
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  7. doctor_kaz Scholar

    doctor_kaz
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    I don't know if it's my imagination, but it seems like the problem gets worse and worse every year. Game costs are escalating and that means that publishers have to stake their profitability on fewer titles, which means that they can't tolerate bad reviews anymore. GTAIV supposedly cost $100 Million to make so spending a little more money to buy some advertising space or strongarm reviewers is worth it.
     
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  8. fastpunk Arbiter

    fastpunk
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    Twas an interesting read. I have a question though. It was triggered by the conclusion of this article. More specifically this part:

    Many reviewers have been babbling about how GTA IV is da best since Ocarine of Time. Why the fuck is everyone praising Ocarine of Time so much? Is it actually that good or something?
     
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  9. Nightjed Liturgist

    Nightjed
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    they dont just spend a little money, they often spend more in marketing than what they invest making the game

    I played zeldaOOT, the 3d novelty was nice at the time, but the gameplay was a boring pos, there were a few ok dungeons usually ruined by the need to run/ride horses/look around for the "spot" to hit with the hook for HOURS AT A TIME, i never finished it as i got bored really really fast, snes's zelda was waaaaaaaaaaay better (it was and it still is fun, i play it when all i have to work with is an underpowered box)


    from the gameplayer's review (obviously they gave it a 10)
    how those problems suddently dissapear and you end up with a 10 is beyond me (they go on trying to blame microsoft and the shitty hardware, yeah right as if a closed hardware system could hold the blame for usual-unpredictable-pc-hardware-like problems, they know what they were working with so any hardware bugs are still their fault)
     
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  10. Texas Red Whiner

    Texas Red
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    Absolutely not true. When was the last time you saw overall scores from film critics?
     
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  11. Nightjed Liturgist

    Nightjed
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    well, i live in Argentina, you should have seen the crap they pulled to get ppl to watch Jumper, they banned comments in newspaper's sites, they published notes about the cast mentioning the movie rather than actually doing a review, they use a system of "stars" that is as idiotic as the overall scores and thats just the paper media...

    i cant generalize it for every country, but you cant deny movies (and games) keep getting worse and worse, (and at least in my country they also get more and more expensive, i swear it costs 1 extra buck every time i check the price)
     
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  12. Lurkar Scholar

    Lurkar
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    Well, OoT was HUGE when it first came out. And it's still a pretty damn fun game. I'm iffy on 10/10 as, in my opinion, virtually zero games should ever get that, but it should be rated high.

    That said, I don't think GTA IV is even close to a ten out of ten. It's just the hype machine chugging along. It's hilarious to look at ratings over the years as they've steadily gone higher. Is anyone going to honestly say that video games as a whole have just gotten that much better?
     
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  13. OldSkoolKamikaze Arcane Patron

    OldSkoolKamikaze
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    Codex 2012 Codex 2013 Codex 2014 PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Make the Codex Great Again! Serpent in the Staglands Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 BattleTech Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    Majora's Mask > Ocarina of Time
     
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  14. Lurkar Scholar

    Lurkar
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    Agreed.


    Also, does anyone have the screenshot of the NWN2 and MotB ratings side by side? The one that has the actual review for MotB stating "This improves on the original game in every single aspect," then gives it a LOWER score then the OC?
     
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  15. Saxon1974 Prophet

    Saxon1974
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    I cancelled all my mag subscriptions a few years ago for this reason, you don't have a to be a brain surgeon to figure out that reviews are bought and sold now.

    Recently computer gaming world stopped printing their mag, this tells me their subscriptions were dropping and they weren't making money printing it anymore. It made me sad because I loved that mag from the early days but it became such a mess of crap that I just couldn't read it anymore. When the issue reviewing Oblivion came out and they didn't mention level scaling nor how the whole world was generic I knew they weren't objective anymore.

    I miss you ole CGW.
     
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  16. Human Shield Augur

    Human Shield
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    Master of Orion 3

    Feb 14, 2003 IGN - 9.2/10

    Mar 31, 2003 Eurogamer - 3/10

    IGN has been giving inflated reviews in exchange for being first forever, being first means website hits and that is all they need.
     
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  17. Chefe Erudite

    Chefe
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    hello world
     
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  18. Jaesun Fabulous Moderator

    Jaesun
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    Torment: Tides of Numenera Divinity: Original Sin 2 BattleTech
    When Gamespot gave Anarchy Online a 9(10)? at launch, it was then I realized gaming publications were totally bought off.

    So the mainstream media just figured this out?
     
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  19. FrancoTAU Cipher

    FrancoTAU
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    Wasn't there a study that showed review scores had almost no correlation with sales? I think the results were explained by saying basically that even the casual gamer doesn't trust these scores.
     
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  20. Brother None inXile Entertainment Developer

    Brother None
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    Well, y'know how review ratings have been on an upward curve? 10 years ago the best game of the year would rate an 8, 5 years ago a 9, and now the best is a 10. In 5 years time, GTA V will be rated 11 out of 10. It goes all the way up to 11, man.

    But anyway, Ocarina of Time was the biggest exception on that. Metacritic aggregates Ocarina at 99/100, Gamerankings as 97.7.

    I guess since then, that game has always stood as an example of how easy it can be to twist ratings into whatever you want them to be just to sell your game? Hence the comparison.

    PS: y'know, the GameRankings file really do show the ratings progress.
    Best of 2000: Perfect Dark, 94.6
    2001: Halo Combat Evolved, 95.51
    2002: Metroid Prime, 96.26
    2003: Legend of Zelda, Wind Waker 94.81
    2004: Half-Life 2, 95.48
    2005: Resident Evil 4, 95.78
    2006: Legend of Zelda, Twilight Princess 93.98
    2007: Super Mario Galaxy, 97.31
    2008: GTA IV, 99.40 (though that'll become lower in a month, that always happens)

    Except for the two Zeldas pushing it down, that's a pretty steady upwards curve.
     
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  21. Xi Arcane

    Xi
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    Failure of the free market maybe?
     
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  22. DraQ Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    DraQ
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    Gee, they noticed that there is something wrong with exclusive reviews in principle? How observant. :roll:
     
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  23. Keldorn Scholar

    Keldorn
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    Dearest Draq : smug sarcasm is not much of a constructive solution to such a predicament. Maybe the first step is boldly transparent and brutally honest identification, followed by promotion of alternative, non-payolas based sources (like mebbe rpgwatch and rpgcodex).
     
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  24. Morbus Scholar

    Morbus
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    Mebbe. But what does it matter? They are two separate "markets"...
     
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  25. Claw Erudite Patron

    Claw
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    Project: Eternity Divinity: Original Sin 2
    Maybe?
     
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