Review controversy

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#1 Posted by Barbed_Haywire (30 posts) -

Hi all,

Jim Sterling from GameFront just wrote a pretty poignant article about the backlash he got for giving Gears of War 3 a score of 8/10, I find stuff like this absolutely fascinating so I thought I'd share it with everyone and get your thoughts.

http://www.gamefront.com/gears-of-war-3-perfect-review-scores-by-divine-right/

So what do you think? Personally I hate that the 1-10 scale has become a 7-10 scale, and that developers and fanboys think, just by the mere fact of a game being a AAA title, it must be entitled to a certain score.

#2 Posted by protomessiah (49 posts) -

I agree, its ridiculous that 7-8 out of 10 is considered a poor score. That is 70-80%! I gave Bulletstorm 6/10 when I reviewed it and I meant that as a good game and well above average. I thought average would be 5 but on the likes of IGN and Gamespot average seems to be 7/10.

#3 Posted by Jeffsekai (7054 posts) -

This happens every time, who gives a shit.

#4 Posted by jetsetwillie (857 posts) -

this is really why i stopped paying any attention to review scores. i just find them to be arbitrary.

#5 Posted by IBurningStar (2190 posts) -

People getting mad at review scores? Jim Sterling? Yeah, this probably isn't worth reading up on.

#6 Posted by MeierTheRed (4941 posts) -

8 seems like a good score, people need to smarten the fuck up. There is a reason the scale goes to 10, too bad reviewers are brain damaged and can't figure out how to use the numbers below 7 properly.

But of course it doesn't help that gamers think a score of 7 = a shit game. Guess we are equally as brain damaged as they are.

#7 Posted by dbz1995 (4790 posts) -

There's some guy on there who's commented that people think that AAA games are more reviewed between 7-10 than 1-10, so 8 is just a 50% according to that messed up rating review. He is pretty much spot on IMO.

#8 Posted by Eojay (183 posts) -

I hadn't heard about this, so I just assumed that it was a bunch of users who were disappointed with the review score. Then I read the article and found out it was also industry people, including devs and people from Epic themselves? Jesus Christ. Greedy fuckers.

8/10 != 4/10

#9 Posted by Slaker117 (4843 posts) -

Yo man. Eight out of ten is a pretty good score.

#10 Posted by Gamer_152 (14113 posts) -

A great article by Sterling again and he's right, this is ludicrous. This isn't the first time this has happened to a reviewer and it isn't even the first time it's happened to him, this is one of those unfortunate recurring circumstances which highlights just how childish and self-centred certain members of the gaming community can be. What do they want Sterling to do, lie about how much he enjoyed the game? Perhaps they genuinely think that somewhere past the fifteen hour mark he's going to have some sort of epiphany which bumps the game up to a nine or ten for him. What's different about this situation is that some professional games publications seem to think that eight is a low score. This shit is just sad.

Moderator
#11 Posted by Adamsons (873 posts) -

@IBurningStar said:

People getting mad at review scores? Jim Sterling? Yeah, this probably isn't worth reading up on.

Pretty much this.

#12 Posted by Colonel_Fury (453 posts) -

This should be a non story. Not that I'm helping by commenting on this here post.

#13 Edited by GuyIncognito (445 posts) -

@Barbed_Haywire said:

Hi all,

Jim Sterling from GameFront just wrote a pretty poignant article about the backlash he got for giving Gears of War 3 a score of 8/10, I find stuff like this absolutely fascinating so I thought I'd share it with everyone and get your thoughts.

http://www.gamefront.com/gears-of-war-3-perfect-review-scores-by-divine-right/

So what do you think? Personally I hate that the 1-10 scale has become a 7-10 scale, and that developers and fanboys think, just by the mere fact of a game being a AAA title, it must be entitled to a certain score.

"Last night, I reviewed Gears of War 3 for Destructoid"

I stopped reading right there.

EDIT: "by the mere fact of a game being a AAA title, it must be entitled to a certain score." You don't see anything wrong with that statement?

#14 Posted by BrickRoad (704 posts) -

Surely the average game these days is 'good'? I mean there's more good games than bad games, so the average game out there is good. I'd say the average score for a game these days is around 7 or 8 out of 10. That doesn't mean 7 or 8 means average as in 'poor', but also that doesn't or shouldn't mean 5/10 means a game is average, because in todays world the average game is good, and 5/10 is not a good score. It's confusing, and I think words make for better reviews than scores. I even think stars is pushing it, but it's a system that works, mostly. 'Average' can mean so many different things if you apply it in certain ways.

#15 Posted by GuyIncognito (445 posts) -

@BrickRoad said:

Surely the average game these days is 'good'? I mean there's more good games than bad games, so the average game out there is good. I'd say the average score for a game these days is around 7 or 8 out of 10. That doesn't mean 7 or 8 means average as in 'poor', but also that doesn't or shouldn't mean 5/10 means a game is average, because in todays world the average game is good, and 5/10 is not a good score. It's confusing, and I think words make for better reviews than scores. I even think stars is pushing it, but it's a system that works, mostly. 'Average' can mean so many different things if you apply it in certain ways.

You're absolutely right.

#16 Posted by StarvingGamer (8559 posts) -

@GuyIncognito said:

EDIT: "by the mere fact of a game being a AAA title, it must be entitled to a certain score." You don't see anything wrong with that statement?

I was always under the impression that AAA was meant to indicate cost, not quality.

#17 Posted by Slaker117 (4843 posts) -
@SoftCoreDave said:

When recommending games to friends it goes something like this :

You HAVE to play this game

This game is decent and worth a look

If you have nothing else on this game is fun

Only worth a look if you can pick it up cheap

Don't bother

This is just an example but I find it much more useful that x/10when as you say everything seems to get a 7/8/9

Yay, five star system.
#18 Posted by mazik765 (2316 posts) -

@GuyIncognito said:

@Barbed_Haywire said:

Hi all,

Jim Sterling from GameFront just wrote a pretty poignant article about the backlash he got for giving Gears of War 3 a score of 8/10, I find stuff like this absolutely fascinating so I thought I'd share it with everyone and get your thoughts.

http://www.gamefront.com/gears-of-war-3-perfect-review-scores-by-divine-right/

So what do you think? Personally I hate that the 1-10 scale has become a 7-10 scale, and that developers and fanboys think, just by the mere fact of a game being a AAA title, it must be entitled to a certain score.

"Last night, I reviewed Gears of War 3 for Destructoid"

I stopped reading right there.

You got farther than I did. I stopped at the first mention this was associated in anyway with Jim Sterling.

#19 Posted by 1p (760 posts) -

lol review scores. Such a nonsensical concept to begin with.

#20 Posted by DrDarkStryfe (1148 posts) -

Sterling is good with the written word, but his writing tone always makes him sound like an elitist ass.

#21 Posted by Vodun (2370 posts) -

Ars Tehcnica's got it right; Buy or Don't buy. Simple and to the point.

#22 Posted by Ramone (2976 posts) -

Gotta say as much as I really don't like Jim Sterling I have to agree with him here. Also review scores are stupid anyway.

#23 Posted by PSNgamesun (414 posts) -

To be honest an 8 is not a bad score but after playing the game I really don't get these score because it did deserve more, I really just feel he wanted to stray out of the pack. It really irritates me when I see this kinda stuff , u see it in movies 2 like look at inception awesome movie real good but u know what it's not as good as fucking kings speech y I don't know it's just a standard thatis full of shit like this reviewer given gears an 8 really an 8 come on man what r u basein ur standard that's the real question. I always see him giving 8s n 7s or below always n u see the games he gives those scores the best games. Oh yeah I forgot it has to be different special n smart , man it's so annoying it's like that loser spoiled brat mentality is taking over video games

#24 Edited by Galiant (2195 posts) -

How about we just get rid of review scores, so people will actually read reviews, Metacritic can die and hard working people developing games won't get worse pay because some jerk decided to bring down a game's average score by spamming Metacritic?

It's all so incredibly stupid!

#25 Posted by Zirilius (732 posts) -

@mazik765 said:

@GuyIncognito said:

@Barbed_Haywire said:

Hi all,

Jim Sterling from GameFront just wrote a pretty poignant article about the backlash he got for giving Gears of War 3 a score of 8/10, I find stuff like this absolutely fascinating so I thought I'd share it with everyone and get your thoughts.

http://www.gamefront.com/gears-of-war-3-perfect-review-scores-by-divine-right/

So what do you think? Personally I hate that the 1-10 scale has become a 7-10 scale, and that developers and fanboys think, just by the mere fact of a game being a AAA title, it must be entitled to a certain score.

"Last night, I reviewed Gears of War 3 for Destructoid"

I stopped reading right there.

You got farther than I did. I stopped at the first mention this was associated in anyway with Jim Sterling.

I should have stopped at that but like a train wreck I couldn't look away.

#26 Posted by jeffb01 (25 posts) -

I look at it like grades - a 9 or a 10 is an A, an 8 is a B, a 7 is a C, a 6 is a D, and a 5 or less is an F... Have you ever been upset when you got a B and thought you deserved an A?

#27 Posted by Milkman (17337 posts) -

Since when did Jim Sterling not write for Destructoid?

#28 Posted by Hailinel (25205 posts) -

@jeffb01 said:

I look at it like grades - a 9 or a 10 is an A, an 8 is a B, a 7 is a C, a 6 is a D, and a 5 or less is an F... Have you ever been upset when you got a B and thought you deserved an A?

Why use a ten point scale if the lower half is utterly meaningless?

#29 Posted by TobbRobb (4850 posts) -
@IBurningStar said:
People getting mad at review scores? Jim Sterling? Yeah, this probably isn't worth reading up on.
@Adamsons said:

@IBurningStar said:

People getting mad at review scores? Jim Sterling? Yeah, this probably isn't worth reading up on.

Pretty much this.

@mazik765 said:

@GuyIncognito said:

@Barbed_Haywire said:

Hi all,

Jim Sterling from GameFront just wrote a pretty poignant article about the backlash he got for giving Gears of War 3 a score of 8/10, I find stuff like this absolutely fascinating so I thought I'd share it with everyone and get your thoughts.

http://www.gamefront.com/gears-of-war-3-perfect-review-scores-by-divine-right/

So what do you think? Personally I hate that the 1-10 scale has become a 7-10 scale, and that developers and fanboys think, just by the mere fact of a game being a AAA title, it must be entitled to a certain score.

"Last night, I reviewed Gears of War 3 for Destructoid"

I stopped reading right there.

You got farther than I did. I stopped at the first mention this was associated in anyway with Jim Sterling.

Well that is pretty damn petty of all of you. I don't especially like sterling or agree with him, but in this article he makes several points, and dammit he's right. Just read it.
#30 Posted by monssfisch (45 posts) -
@CaLe said:

I advise giving this a read even if you harbour a grudge against Jim Sterling. He makes a very important point in this article.

He does, but I think that he's definitely aware that people who go looking for reviews on metacritic are much more likely to read the reviews at the highest and lowest ends of the scale. No prizes for guessing where his review lies (out of 55 reviews).  Maybe that's an overly cynical way to look at it, but come on, it's Jim Sterling we're talking about.
#31 Edited by Mentalnova (139 posts) -

I'm watching an online playthrough and this is another GEARS OF CRINGE STORY to the bone - so glad I didn't get suckered like I did with the second.

#32 Posted by TekZero (2691 posts) -

Wait, 8/10 is a good score.

But people should, you know, READ THE REVIEW INSTEAD OF JUST LOOKING AT A SCORE.

#33 Edited by Tebbit (4486 posts) -

I've noticed that non-American publications (and specifically non-American reviewers) have been scoring the game lower than average, largely because they found the narrative elements to be... not perfect. Gamespot UK's Start Select programme makes fun of it, Jim Sterling, Eurogamer and others (which I can't recall off the top of my head) are examples of this.

Has anyone paused to think that this may be a regional thing? Gears has always told a very Western, and especially American story (often overly so, never forget those bro-tastic moments from 1 and 2), so couldn't it be that European, English or otherwise foreign-to-the-US reviewers simply don't find that kind of narrative appealing?

I have never found the characterisations in the other Gears games to be anything special, and the actual storytelling bordered on atrocious at times. Having not played 3 yet (where most reviewers inform me significant strides in character development have been made) I can't say whether this trend has truly continued or not, but the way I see things panning out, I reckon the storytelling just wasn't Jim's cup of tea.

TLDR: different people have different opinions. People who "stop reading" after they see the words Jim Sterling or Destructoid are flippant morons who can't tell the significant difference between justified opinion and parody.

#34 Posted by SethPhotopoulos (5407 posts) -
#35 Posted by Soffish (139 posts) -

There's controversy surrounding a Jim Sterling review? Shocking.

#36 Posted by Captain_Felafel (1602 posts) -

Interesting read, some salient points were raised. It is a disturbing phenomenon where AAA titles are expected to "start" at a 9/10 merely because of their budget. It's something the movie industry obviously doesn't have to deal with, as made evidence by the myriad of Summer blockbusters this year. Huge, ridiculous budgets and ridiculous profits but tepid scores from reviewers (See: Transformers 3, for example).

#37 Posted by kishinfoulux (2527 posts) -

I like Jim but my problem with his 8 score is that Gears 3 seems to clearly be the better game then it's predecessor and yet it scores lower. This is my beef with numerical scores. They're arbitrary and mean nothing.

#38 Posted by Rolyatkcinmai (2699 posts) -

Hey, a Jim Sterling article.

Let me just print that out and shove it up my fucking ass.

#39 Posted by kishinfoulux (2527 posts) -

@Milkman said:

Since when did Jim Sterling not write for Destructoid?

D-toid is his primary gig but he freelances for other places as well. Gamesradar is another he writes for and he's also on the Escapist.

#40 Posted by Jerr (531 posts) -

Yeah, I don't find it fascinating at all.

#41 Posted by VicRattlehead (1400 posts) -

that troll found a new bridge to live under? i thought he worked for Destructoid?

#42 Posted by MariachiMacabre (7100 posts) -

Sterling writes, seemingly, for the sole purpose of starting controversy. As good as this article is, it doesn't change the fact that I do not think his written opinions are genuine.

#43 Posted by Bobby_The_Great (1015 posts) -

Yet, Jim did give Assassins Creed 2 a 4/10, which I find to be asinine. Review scores = opinions. Just look at Dead Island. Not such great scores, but fans are loving it and it's selling well. Good on the public.

#44 Edited by swamplord666 (1763 posts) -

taking out of context that it's jim sterling and destructoid, he brings up a valid point and i'm sad to hear that both industry devs and editors are annoyed. 8/10 is still a great score and his explanation behind his score is absolutely valid. and once again... opinions.

edit: does anyone remember the backlash jeff got after his 8.8 for twilight princess? that was hilarious!

#45 Edited by Maajin (1091 posts) -

I hate Jim Sterling's persona, but I respect him a lot. And this was a great read. Feeling a bit disgusted as well, especially about the Epic guy.

Though, I think Jim missed the point a bit: people weren't pissed because Gears 3 was supposed to receive 90%+ scores for it's brand name and history, they were pissed because pretty much everybody else gave it a 90%+ score.

#46 Posted by PrivateIronTFU (3874 posts) -

I will never understand why Jim Sterling gets so much hate. Gamers, or at least commenters on Destructoid, seem to be a bunch of thin-skinned pussies who can never take a joke. It's pathetic.

#47 Posted by Sitoxity (544 posts) -

The problem is that no matter who you are, what the game is and what score you give it, a reviewer will always be criticized and shot down about a score for a game. I've seen people on the site I work for get death threats for christ sakes. Why? He gave Resistance 2 a bad score, because he genuinely hated that game.

Hell, my God of War 3 review got hate because it wasn't a 5 star review. Mostly on N4G mind, but still. It doesn't matter that I was praising the game, people just look at the scores and judge from that. If they're a fan, anything less than perfect is a terrible review.

It's best just to go with the reviewers your opinion mimics, or who you at least find interesting to read. If a game intrigues you enough that even a bad or average review still makes you think you'll want to play it, then go buy it. If a review turns you off a game, don't.

No matter how much Dead Island I see, and how much fun people have playing it, I never plan on buying it. It looks dull and tedious to me. Sure messing around in Co Op with friends looks like a fantastic laugh and the reviews all round weren't exactly bad, that doesn't mean I, personally, will definitely enjoy it.

Sure, I don't like Jim Sterling's reviews, I don't agree with his opinions on most things, but really him complaining about him getting this attention is pretty unprofessional. So people didn't like his review? Big deal. Move on. There's no need to go all out and respond to this crap. It'll happen no matter what, especially more so on big titles.

#48 Posted by Ravenlight (8011 posts) -

@MariachiMacabre said:

Sterling writes, seemingly, for the sole purpose of starting controversy. As good as this article is, it doesn't change the fact that I do not think his written opinions are genuine.

Yeah, this might be (slightly more) newsworthy if it it didn't involve a known troll/mediawhore.

#49 Posted by Twisted_Scot (1180 posts) -

Your assumption that these kids that complain about an 8 / 10 score can count these days.....it's cute.

#50 Posted by Brendan (8167 posts) -

@kishinfoulux said:

I like Jim but my problem with his 8 score is that Gears 3 seems to clearly be the better game then it's predecessor and yet it scores lower. This is my beef with numerical scores. They're arbitrary and mean nothing.

Dude, expectations change over time. The problem you have is with your lack of understanding of this basic concept. The original Halo has score on par with many of it's sequels, but do you really think that those sequels haven't gotten any better over the years? Of course they have! Scores indicate quality at the time of release. If a sequel comes out that, in the reviewers eyes, doesn't improve enough upon it's predecessor in the changed landscape with higher expectations then clearly it's going to score lower. I honestly cannot believe that people can't understand this.

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