Alex and Brad are the best writers on staff.
I almost never see eye to eye with Brad but almost always read his reviews because they're generally very well written.
Jeff doesn't write as well as Brad and Alex in my opinion. He's just not as creative with his choices of words. I can't really form an opinion on Ryan since he hasn't written anything in ages it seems. Can't say i've read enough of Rorie's work on screened either to really know about him.
As for Patrick i think he's the weakest one. This has nothing to do with the subject matter he chooses and the opinions he express but purely from a structure, grammar and choice of words point of view i just don't think he's a very good writer.
Alex and Brad are the best writers on staff by far. Patrick has really good ideas that he often executes on very well, though I wish he would often take a bit more care in his writing. I enjoy Ryan and Rorie's writing when they do it. And I really respect Jeff, but it's not for his writing prowess honestly.
Can't say i've read enough of Rorie's work on screened either to really know about him.
Rorie did some great stuff in his... um... hiatus. You can check it all out on his blog. I hope they let him start writing more for the site because he offers another perspective pretty different from the other guys. Sort of like if Alex and Dave had a baby who loved MMOs and Star Wars. Also, I think he's known for being more reserved and proper in a way, but he's great with the snark too when he wants to be:
(from Rorie's blog, 9/30/12)
Here are some thoughts/ideas as to how Gearbox could spice up (like the Spice Girls LOL) the incoming DLC for Borderlands 2:
- How about a mission where you’re forced to find a bunch of ECHO recorders that each contain a piece of a song? Except - get this - it’s a parody of the Gotye hit “Somebody That I Used To Know.” Wacky, huh?!
- You embark on a series of quests that will ultimately pit you against a slightly pudgy Asian boss. And when you finally get to fight him, his intro cutscene features him doing the Gangnam Style dance! Would that be crazy or what???
- Or maybe you could be stranded on an island after your spaceship crashes, and you have to bring together a diverse and bickering group of NPCs before a big monster that’s made out of smoke gets you all! And then, when you defeat it, you get nothing.
- GET THIS: there could be an NPC that resembles a certain young male pop star! Only his name would be - wait for it - “Justin Beaver!” WHOAAAAAAAAA blew your mind there didn’t I! But not as much as you’re gonna blow Beaver’s mind, because you wind up shooting him in the head! ROFLCOPTERS!
- It’d be funny if maybe some of the bandits yelled “USE THE FORCE, LUKE!” when they die because it was in Star Wars!
And then your character farts.
Kind of a tough question, since context plays heavily into it. I think Rorie is my favourite writer in general, considering I cared enough to consistently visit his blog between Screened and now; he's really great at writing all around, from article flow to just simple grammar. Rorie doesn't really write for the site at all though, so I felt a bit weird about voting for him. Out of the people that write reviews, I only read Patrick's as his views generally seems to match up most with mine, though overall I tend to find Drew and Vinny (barring Dark Souls) have more similar tastes to me.
I think both Alex and Patrick are really good writers. The only issue I find with Patrick's writing is he could stand to proof read his articles a couple more times, or have someone peer-review his work, as he ends up being the one with the greatest number of typos and phrasing issues. Grammar doesn't manage to detract much from my enjoyment of the articles though, so it's not much of an issue. Between "Worth Reading", the Walking Dead Series, his written interviews, and his reviews, my vote had to go to Patrick.
You can tell Patrick is young and inexperienced through his writing. Jeff has a very predictable style but it's practical and gets the job done. Alex is probably the best writer but I prefer Brad's more subdued tone and thoughtful word choice.
I made all of this up. I don't know anything about any of them. Jeff's commas are predictable though, just like my own.
Alex is both the most well read and most clever writer on staff. Jeff's writing style is iconoclast and kind of meat-and-potatoes (some might say WORKMANLIKE) and Brad's is a more verbose version of that. Patrick seems like... I bet Patrick's writing today is very similar to how Alex would have written 6-7 years ago. He has the same sort of style but is much more grasping beyond his reach.
I've only read like two Rorie articles and I actually find him a little longwinded. Which is strange, because... I love listening to Rorie just talk, and I don't like his writing. I find Alex to be kind of obnoxious when I hear him talking, but I find him to be excellent in the written form.
It would probably be Alex either way, but I feel like I've barely read anything more than tweets and really short stuff from anyone but Alex or Patrick for a long time.
I have definitely read a few full-length Brad reviews lately, and while I like the content and detail his reviews most of the time, he has some habits as a writer that I don't always like.
Patrick for sure! Worth Reading is one of my favorite things about this site, and dude posts really interesting links to games I'd never be exposed to otherwise.
But is it his writing that makes it good or the links to other peoples articles that make it good?
I don't really enjoy any of the articles Patrick writes, the subject matter he writes about does nothing for me. Indie game, sexism, big bad corporations just boring predictable stuff to me.
@zombie2011: You actually bring up a pretty good point, I can't think of anything off the top of my head that Patrick has written that really blew me away. Although, I do enjoy his tweets and interviews, I can't say he's really wowed me with an article. I can't really say that for any of the GB crew though, to be honest. I don't really like Alex's writing style, I don't hardly ever agree with his opinions and all he writes are opinion pieces. I do like the articles Jeff does... it's really a toss up between Jeff and Patrick, but admittedly, I don't come to this site to read and I hardly ever read the articles. I just really liked the thing Jeff did on the Video Game Wrestling Federation, and I also really enjoy his tweets.
Jeff I guess, though I chose see result because I really couldn't care less. They're all fine writers in their own way. I don't ever remember reading much of Jeff's work other than from some reviews and just before the crew is going to a convention like E3 or PAX, and I enjoy those insights some.
When Ryan writes I really like it, so I voted for him. But Alex is really good and he's pretty prevalent too. They're both my favorites. I find that some others tend to be needlessly pessimistic at times. I know they're critics, but it often feels like they hold bias.
Alex because he's the only one that does articles on his thoughts. I can't remember the last time the other guys shared their opinions in written form. Patrick has some great written interviews (the walking dead ones were fantastic), but even he has switched over to the audio format with the dump truck. Therefore, Alex sort of wins by default. That being said, I'm also a big fan of his work. Jeff could probably compete with him if he actually wrote anymore. (I suppose I'm excluding reviews here)