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Paid Reviews: Critics or Conmen?

This is a discussion on Paid Reviews: Critics or Conmen? within the General PS3 Discussion forum, part of the Everything PlayStation; Originally Posted by mattveego It is just someone's opinion. If they like a game a lot and you don't, that ...

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattveego View Post
    It is just someone's opinion. If they like a game a lot and you don't, that does not mean that they are not aloud to give it a high score based on their opinion.
    While this is true to some extent, not balancing well the pros and cons leads to an opinion to not be well-justified and thus, making it shit. Counting 50 cons to weight the same as one pro (or vice versa) isn't giving your opinion any credbility and makes the review (and your opinion along the way) crap.

    Then again, you are more than free to keep hiding behind the "It's his opinion!" argument.

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    I've been saying it for almost a decade, and I'll keep preaching it till I die. Why do people depend on reviews to make the choice for them on what they will like and play? Most reviews are biased anyways based on the "gaming expert" that's doing the review. I enjoy the bad reviewed games a lot most of the time compared to the overrated and hyped games that come out every year.

    I'm sure a few reviews are paid for, but as many as the video lists? I don't know about that. And since when was a 7-8 score a bad score? A bad score to me is what the 1-10 is supposed to entail. 1-3/4 is a bad score, 4-6 is the average game, 7-9 is an extremely good game, and 10 better be the greatest thing since sliced bread. The amount of games that receive a 10 score is unbelievable and unjust.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Minarum View Post
    Most reviews are biased anyways based on the "gaming expert" that's doing the review.
    All reviews are biased, for they are the reviewer's opinion.

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    I finally got to play Uncharted 3, I saw IGN gave it a 10 and I already know it was gonna be a good game, and now that I finally played it, it was overhyped, the second one was better by far to me, the story felt weak and rushed to me, same as MW3, but I see why Review teams praise games like this so bad, Because they don't want bad rep by the fans and the ppl that are going to buy it so they follow the fans words and rate it that way
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    At this point, video game reviews are little more than my guilty pleasure for entertainment purposes, or to scratch an itch that I know is going to be bad the second I go and rake my nails into it.

    It's kind of difficult for a review not to be as biased as it is for professional reviewer, considering that the overwhelming amount of commercial funding comes from the game companies themselves advertising on your relative platform. I do think as a journalistic standpoint that it causes a painful conflict of interest when you're unsure if the larger piece of the revenue pie is going to be heading to a competitor because you docked half a point, because of something you felt was lacking - so I do feel that particularly the more "hyped" titles are inflated because of this conundrum.

    It also feels, that the majority of reviews at this point simply gloss over the positives that a game brings, but spends an unbalanced amount of the reviews emphasis on the negative points. I am not entirely sure if it just because as a human beings, we enjoy to see the proverbial "car wreck" with the colorful analogies and descriptions for how bad something is as opposed to seeing an article build up something positive in a way that is equally appealing to us. So often times your left with an article that although might say there are good things about a game, seems to be overly nitpicking in it's delivery in order to try and present itself as something more entertaining than informative.

    I think more people need to use there own head in deciding what games are good, and listen to people who are close and know you and your particular likes and dislikes and value their input (if it's pertaining to your views, because somebody could love a particular genre of games and think something is the best ever, but if they aren't taking into account that you dislike the genre they aren't exactly giving you applicable input.) It seems far to often that individuals prefer to let other people change their opinions and that sometimes works out on you missing out on something your gut feeling might have been right about.

    I can't remember the last time a review helped sway my opinion on a game one way or the other, but that doesn't mean that I don't still read them for the sake of trying to find a particularly well written one that doesn't sound as if it's forceful, or done in a way that is trying to suggest I should play the game. The days of reviews being informative pieces, to me, has long since gone by the way side, and what I am left with is chuckle material, or something to fulfill my daily quota of face palms.

    Maybe one day, I'll find that holy grail of game reviews that causes me to snap my fingers and say "Eureka!", but until then - they'll be my guilty pleasure reading material.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mattveego View Post
    Actually the Playstation team on IGN makes the "greatest games list" an the guy who gave MGS4 a 10/10 is not at IGN anymore. You cannot expect every person at IGN o have the same opinion.

    I do not believe in paid reviews. I feel that is just an excuse people give themselves when their game does not get 10's across the board.
    I agree not everyone can have the same opinion. What I am saying is it devalues the integrity of the site and their reviews. No one says 'John Smith' wrote the review. No one says 'John Smith and Jane Doe' wrote the greatest games list. People say 'IGN' scored it X, and IGN names X as the greatest PS3 game. 10/10 is the best score something can get. To have someone represent your website and say a game is as close to perfection as possible, and then have people represent your site and make a list naming the greatest PS3 games without said 10/10 on the list anywhere, damages the sites integrity. Why bother look at the sites reviews anymore? It causes too much confusion if a 10/10 is not 'good' enough to be on a 'best of' list for the system.

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    if anyone tries to say IGN Is good at reviews, just go read the Dead space 2 Review they wrote:


    Dead Space 2 Review - PlayStation 3 Review at IGN


    Dead Space 2 is an amazing game. I'm going to write about its scary moments, cool kills, and how much I dig the main character's internal struggle, but Dead Space 2 is about more than this.

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    A biased and ultimately stupid video, this is a great example of a classic logical error "Begging the question," in other words the entire premise assumes the conclusion/point is true.

    This provides no more value to the discussion than some of the anti-BioWare stuff you posed about DA2 and ME3.

    I keep coming back to two major questions that have never, ever, ever, ever been truly answered with any evidence that holds up to critical thinking.

    1) If major publication reviews are paid for (definition: money is exchanged to influence/purchase a review score directly on a wide-scale), why is their no true evidence of such a massive conspiracy? Where is the money trail? After all you are talking about millions of dollars per game to influence all the reviews.

    - Anecdotal/singular evidence doesn't count (i.e. Kane & Lynch), actually I'd argue they support the position that the major publication reviews on the whole aren't, because we have an example of a slip-up getting out and causing massive PR issues because it was obvious. I am talking about someone who used to work for IGN or one of these major publications coming out publicly about it.

    After all this whole premise is implying a wide-scale conspiracy involving hundreds or thousands of people...

    2) How do you account for the variances of all reviews? There actually is quite a bit of variance in review scores if you look at Metacritic, and there is also variance on the variance from game to game.

    I've actually done alot of analysis to try and find trends if I disagree with the public opinion on a wholesale level, and I am telling you right now that each game has about a 20+% variance and the variance on the variance is about 50% on average, meaning there isn't a really obvious pattern in scores here.

    As I've said all along reviews exist in their own realm, they are subjective analysis of a median. Most reviewer's bias is well known and obvious if you actually read the fucking review rather than focus on the scores, if you, as a consumer of this information, can't figure this out... I have no sympathy for you because you clearly aren't intelligent enough to differentiate out subjectivity and apply information across subjective lines. You're apart of the same garbage that spawns extremism and ignorance.

    I trust most major publications before I trust most user reviews as the ratio of quality vs. non-quality user reviews to quality vs. non-quality published reviews are orders of magnitude in favor of published reviews.

    Quote Originally Posted by BadWolf2142 View Post
    I have no doubt that all the marketing done by game publishers (including providing free copies of games to reviewers before launch and hype built up amongst fans) has an influence on game review scores. And it's nothing new really, just something to be weary of when deciding which game to buy.
    So you are saying that the fact that reviewers are given free copies of the game they want to review is influencing the score? Could you explain why this is because I can't figure out what your logic is here...

    I feel like, in all actuality, if you are given a free game you are more likely to dislike it because you don't have an investment in it... Its the same concept that spawns fanboyism, at its core its caused by the fact that people have a desire to be "right" about subjective purchases. If you don't want a PS3 and a 360, for example, and you have to buy one or the other, you validate your purchase in light of society because you want to be comfortable in your purchase. In my opinion, this viewpoint is more likely than saying "Hey! Free game" and be happy with it even if its boring.

    I'm also curious how you address the fact that this is and has been common practice since critical publications were invented and stretch beyond the gaming industry.

    Technology, automotive, appliances, clothing, etc all adopt this same model... Yet I still read hundreds of scathing reviews in major publications each year for all kinds of merchandise in all industries.

    Again, the reality is reviews are subjective, the value they carry is in the analysis they provide. The information is applicable through your perception of it.

    I gave a pretty in-depth example when I posted something about Dante's Inferno many years ago, and to re-iterate the critical point of that its the fact that if you read the actual review by a good reviewer the opinions will be well thought out.

    They may not come to the same conclusions about the information you do, but the idea is through the subjective analysis you can apply the analysis to your own opinions to assess information. Again the value is in the analysis! Getting someone's real thoughts on things that aren't able to be represented concretely by things like gameplay videos/previews/demos/etc. You're adding a human thought-process, a human set of value analysis. You see things like this in the real world all the fucking time, the entire product-based technology industry is based on it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Ps360 View Post
    if anyone tries to say IGN Is good at reviews, just go read the Dead space 2 Review they wrote:
    Explain to me what about that sentence is bad. Seriously, don't just post that stuff... Tell me what about it is actually verifiably bad.

    Sure, it sounds kind of childish to rate a game based on "scary moments" and "cool kills," but what about that is bad.

    Moreover what are you implying now? I thought IGN's problem is they are ignorant, are you criticizing their writing skills or their review process? Those are two wildly different things. Not to mention are you implying that their DS2 review was dishonest?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nagflar View Post
    All reviews are biased, for they are the reviewer's opinion.
    Yes but the point of the review is to be unbiased and to provide as much detail as possible... Reviewers have forgotten that and strayed away from that for many years now by adding their love or hate for a series.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Minarum View Post
    Yes but the point of the review is to be unbiased and to provide as much detail as possible... Reviewers have forgotten that and strayed away from that for many years now by adding their love or hate for a series.
    100% Objective Review: Final Fantasy XIII -Destructoid

    If you want an "unbiased" review of a game, read the back of the box.

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    paid reviews completely destroy the whole point of it all, its like making a bad youtube video and wanting a bunch of views so you continually rewatch your own video a million times, its sad and while game developers should be focusing on making a good product their more concerned with falsely inflating a games reception. If the game is good, people will play it, look at resident evil 4, at the time when that came out resident evil wasn't mainstream, but the quality of that one game made it the must play game of the last generation, and now everyone has played it. Aside from all that, MGS4 is the best game on the ps3 and deserved a 10/10 regardless, as it was an absolute masterpiece that stayed true to the series and didn't give in to mainstream marketing and development like many companies are doing today (i'm looking at you capcom, y u ruin resident evil?)


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    Quote Originally Posted by mattveego View Post
    I feel that is just an excuse people give themselves when their game does not get 10's across the board.
    This and a way to justify thier purchases

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    Quote Originally Posted by CapnKoala View Post
    If you want an "unbiased" review of a game, read the back of the box.
    Lol, even then you get some misleading details for a game or about a game. Specially if it's GH edition lol. And I'm not going to read the link you posted. Not worth my time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Orange-Vision View Post
    paid reviews completely destroy the whole point of it all, its like making a bad youtube video and wanting a bunch of views so you continually rewatch your own video a million times, its sad and while game developers should be focusing on making a good product their more concerned with falsely inflating a games reception. If the game is good, people will play it, look at resident evil 4, at the time when that came out resident evil wasn't mainstream, but the quality of that one game made it the must play game of the last generation, and now everyone has played it.
    Resident Evil was very mainstream by the 2nd and 3rd installment.

    Quote Originally Posted by Orange-Vision View Post
    Aside from all that, MGS4 is the best game on the ps3 and deserved a 10/10 regardless, as it was an absolute masterpiece that stayed true to the series and didn't give in to mainstream marketing and development like many companies are doing today (i'm looking at you capcom, y u ruin resident evil?)
    See I disagree 100%. It didn't deserve anything, let alone a 10/10. It wasn't mind blowing or innovating enough to receive anything spectacular. There are much better games to be played on the ps3 for gameplay and story purposes.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Minarum View Post
    Yes but the point of the review is to be unbiased and to provide as much detail as possible... Reviewers have forgotten that and strayed away from that for many years now by adding their love or hate for a series.
    You can't be conpletely objective. What you perceive as great graphics, I can perceive as average graphics. What you perceive as smooth controls, I can perceive as clunky controls. The only thing I can be 100% objective about is the game's name, the characters in it, the publisher/developer and the genre (among other misc things). The link Koala provided is a perfect example of how moronic it is t expect a very objective review, when in fact, the way you experience the game is what dictates how you'll score it and how you feel about it.

    By any chance, did you happen to attend "How to post like Ps360 101"? Because every time it comes down to posting about reviews, you come up with impossible demands a la Ps360.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nagflar View Post
    you come up with impossible demands a la Ps360.
    nothing is impossible

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nagflar View Post
    You can't be conpletely objective. What you perceive as great graphics, I can perceive as average graphics. What you perceive as smooth controls, I can perceive as clunky controls. The only thing I can be 100% objective about is the game's name, the characters in it, the publisher/developer and the genre (among other misc things). The link Koala provided is a perfect example of how moronic it is t expect a very objective review, when in fact, the way you experience the game is what dictates how you'll score it and how you feel about it.

    By any chance, did you happen to attend "How to post like Ps360 101"? Because every time it comes down to posting about reviews, you come up with impossible demands a la Ps360.
    Why yes I did attend the school for the gifted and talented. It's not impossible demands. Which is why I say gameplay trailers and videos will put out the message about a game 10-100x better than any reviewer can. Specially if the person is being extremely biased. Ever since Youtube came out, I've based almost every purchase of games I WANT TO play off of gameplay vids, and I haven't been dissatisfied once. There have been too many great games out there that receive crappy reviews and scores that people religiously follow. Yet they'll turn around and praise the shittiest games that aren't worth a breath of life. Difference is, the shit keeps on produced shit, while the great rarely release games or a sequel.

    And I just read the link, it's moronic because the guy is talking like a robot and being extremely sarcastic throughout the whole thing. But on a subjective level. it's one of the better reviews I've read in awhile, he just needs a little more details now and to include gameplay footage.

    But yes. I agree with you on some people think one games graphics are superior and another game's graphics is crap. It's everyone's opinion. That's why you have to judge the game for yourself and not let others do it for you. Which is always my point. Nothing impossible about that, just don't read a review or let someone judge the game for you. Use your brain and think for yourself.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ps360 View Post
    nothing is impossible
    I suppose you saw a unicorn flying around carrying the dead and/or sickly that happen to be healed by the unicorn riding on its back then, eh?
    Last edited by dsluckay; 03-13-2012 at 06:12 PM.

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    I don't pay attention to payed reviews. If I wanted feedback on a game, I'd ask friends who've played the games their opinion before I decide whether or not I want to spend my precious money on it.


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    Quote Originally Posted by dsluckay View Post
    I suppose you saw a unicorn flying around carrying the dead and/or sickly that happen to be healed by the unicorn riding on its back then, eh?

    yup.


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    Quote Originally Posted by DaRe_xLw View Post
    I don't pay attention to payed reviews. If I wanted feedback on a game, I'd ask friends who've played the games their opinion before I decide whether or not I want to spend my precious money on it.
    Same here man!
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