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Editorial: A Reviewers Integrity


Reviews are a dime-a-dozen. And people read reviews for different reasons. Some wonder if they should buy a game, so they check out some reviews. Others are curious what other people thought of the game, so they read some reviews. I fall into the latter category, especially after I review a game. I wonder if people thought the same thing as I did or not.

Sometimes my score will be higher or lower, but a lot of times, the complaints and props are the same. And even if I personally don’t like a game, I can still give it at least a somewhat proper grade on it’s merits. Or if I love a game, I can grade it properly due to it’s flaws. All reviewers should be this way, ESPECIALLY if you get paid.

I’ll use Heavy Rain as a good example here. Go look on Metacritic, and it has a pretty good average score. But scroll at the bottom, and you will see some really low scores. I read both of those reviews, and that was when it dawned on me that, Yes everyone has an opinion, but No, everyone should not write reviews. I like to think that even if I reviewed a game I didn’t like, I could find the positive things about the game, and give it credit where credit is due. But it sounded like these kids just missed the whole point of the game all together.

If, and this is a strong if, I were to review LEGO Rock Band, I wouldn’t give it an F because I really dislike music games. I will happily mention this is not up my alley, so the score may be slightly lower than some, but as a “reviewer”, you are obliged to give an honest opinion of the game. Realistically, it should be objective (or is the word I’m looking for subjective? Ah, who cares, you know what I mean.), and if the game works the way it should or not, in a round about way.

On the flip side, if you LOVE a game, don’t just give it a 100, or 10, or 5 stars, or whatever grade scale you use. I LOVED Heavy Rain, but that doesn’t detract from the fact it has some pretty big issues.

And lastly, a good reviewer doesn’t spoil the plot in their review. It is completely possible to review a game without spoiling anything; read my reviews. And I do it for free, so just think about how good they would be if I were getting paid. Just kidding, folks. But seriously, this is another big issue that “reviewers” need to think about when they type up a review.

I review games because I love games, and am an outspoken person. If my reviews persuade someone to check out a game, GREAT! If people read my reviews over other reviews, fantastic! So I’m basically taking this moment to thank everyone for coming to the site, and hopefully, for coming back time and time again. I know this piece turned into a weird rabbit trail, but thanks for hopping along with me.

If you are interested in reviewing games for Gameciety, I would love to hear from you. Email me at sobaer@live.com. Or if you wish to be affiliated in any way, same contact email. Thanks again for reading folks.

-Sobær

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