Author Topic: About the state of the gaming journalism  (Read 4705 times)

Offline Mariano

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About the state of the gaming journalism
« on: May 06, 2015, 09:07:23 pm »
Here is an old but very interesting article about game reviews:


http://vgrhq.com/exclusive-critics-admit-to-lowering-scores-for-attention/


If you believe the article or not is your decision.


I am not going to give a very long and hard opinion about this topic, for me at least the amount of sensationalism in the industry is sick to the point that i barely look for gaming news anymore...


I just wanted to open this topic if someome want to express himself. I am not against journalist in general of course, but in this industry in particular, there is just to much bullshit.

Offline Berto

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Re: About the state of the gaming journalism
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2015, 03:44:48 am »
Here is an old but very interesting article about game reviews:


http://vgrhq.com/exclusive-critics-admit-to-lowering-scores-for-attention/


If you believe the article or not is your decision.


I am not going to give a very long and hard opinion about this topic, for me at least the amount of sensationalism in the industry is sick to the point that i barely look for gaming news anymore...


I just wanted to open this topic if someome want to express himself. I am not against journalist in general of course, but in this industry in particular, there is just to much bullshit.

Thanks for sharing the article, somehow reading that make me mad too.  >:(
I wonder if this is one of them : http://www.ign.com/articles/2014/10/03/alien-isolation-review
judging for lot of angry comments on the article.

Offline TimmiT

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Re: About the state of the gaming journalism
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2015, 03:49:12 am »
Looks like another website not many people know about that's trying to cause controversy and get attention. If those are quotes from actual reviewers, we have no idea where they're from. They could be from sites people barely know about. Aside from that, this hardly proves that it's something that happens on most gaming websites.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2015, 03:55:12 am by TimmiT »

Offline Draikin

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Re: About the state of the gaming journalism
« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2015, 02:23:20 pm »
Video game website using ads to generate revenue posts controversial article about websites writing controversial reviews to generate ad revenue.

Maybe it's just me, but I do find that a bit ironic. I was even redirect to an advertisement page before being able to view the "About" page. And the website also opens under pop-under ads that also pop up a dialog box when you try to close them.

Offline George

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Re: About the state of the gaming journalism
« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2015, 03:03:22 pm »
This has been known for awhile now, the guys at Giantbomb have talked about this sorta practice on their podcast and even worse about companies taking reviews to big events, with parties to get higher scores. I think Ubisoft got some shit for Assassin's Creed 2 when they took reviewers to an all paid trip to Italy to play the game there, but if you wanted to attend you had to sign a forum that basically stated you would give the game a high review, of at least 8 and above. That's worse.

Offline TimmiT

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Re: About the state of the gaming journalism
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2015, 03:43:54 pm »
This has been known for awhile now, the guys at Giantbomb have talked about this sorta practice on their podcast and even worse about companies taking reviews to big events, with parties to get higher scores. I think Ubisoft got some shit for Assassin's Creed 2 when they took reviewers to an all paid trip to Italy to play the game there, but if you wanted to attend you had to sign a forum that basically stated you would give the game a high review, of at least 8 and above. That's worse.
Well yeah, publishers trying to manipulate sites into giving their games higher scores is sadly nothing new. Thankfully there are reviewers who point that shit out. I think that right now publishers trying to get Youtubers to make sponsored videos without a disclaimer of that they're sponsored, or Youtubers not making it clear that videos are sponsored or not might be bigger problem at the moment though. As an example of the latter, whenever JonTron does a sponsored video it's only mentioned in the "read more of the description" part that most people don't read.

The article is about reviewers purposely lowering review scores to cause controversies though, and it's one of which the legitimacy is very questionable. There are probably sites that do that, but I doubt that it's a widespread thing that happens.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2015, 03:46:29 pm by TimmiT »

Offline Nirmugen

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Re: About the state of the gaming journalism
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2015, 06:47:53 pm »
Well...the decimal score system is working more "favorable" to Metacritic than anything and you know how Metacritic works even if a game got a 79 score...

Offline inthesky

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Re: About the state of the gaming journalism
« Reply #7 on: May 07, 2015, 11:34:50 pm »
It's obviously happened before but the problem is it doesn't offer any insight into how representative of a practice this is besides suggesting that it happened during a certain time frame and applies to nonmajor sites. The latter especially is strange - the logic of it is sound, but the insight to me still feels limited. I'm inclined to believe it but I want a deeper look - but of course this isn't possible due to the perceived threats to these writers' well-being.

What I find interesting is the conflicting interests involved in this setup. See, presumably if you throw out a negative review for a prominent game it's entirely possible that a publisher will decline to provide you with review copies. Konami already has an axe to grind with Jim Sterling due to his perceived hostility over time. More generally, fraying relations with a company has more ramifications than just the above - less likely to get interviews, have to shell out money for game (however little it may be relatively speaking to operations of a media company), and possible signaling to other publishers that you are a hostile party that should not be dealt with. These risks for a hypothetical return of more traffic? I mean, I understand that this is a strategy that a niche or mid-sized site would probably employ (better risk buffering) but still it doesn't seem rewarding. Absent context, I would think that our current structure rewards either positivity or hiveminds/orthodoxy. As should already be clear, publishers do not always play honest with the concept of reviewing, too, and I think the leverage of publishers needs to be acknowledged in light of some black marks in gaming media (Jeff Gerstmann, Robert Florence departures).

I feel like it should be noted that the very obvious point of this article is not to stoke the flames of INCESTUIS GAEMZ JOURNZLIAMS and claim that reviews are useless ("We have no writing awards for our field and gamers typically just spend their time trashing and insulting reviewers") but to point out the weakening of gaming media in general as the economics of the media industry have changed. That is, payment through ad revenue. But of course, under our current system of economics there is no recourse for gaming journalists and little to encourage them, strictly from the vantage point of self-interest, that such behavior isn't desirable. I feel like the industry is evolving to reward predatory behavior more over time.

btw, it should not be the case that deviations from the norm are viewed immediately as suspect - i.e. assuming that Arthur Gies' review of Bayonetta 2 or the other relatively low scoring reviews are fundamentally dishonest.

Journalism is a shriveling industry on the whole, and this has continued to be the case over the years. Pay is bad, opportunities are scarce.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2015, 11:40:39 pm by inthesky »
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Offline Berto

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Re: About the state of the gaming journalism
« Reply #8 on: May 11, 2015, 01:58:42 am »
What I find interesting is the conflicting interests involved in this setup. See, presumably if you throw out a negative review for a prominent game it's entirely possible that a publisher will decline to provide you with review copies. Konami already has an axe to grind with Jim Sterling due to his perceived hostility over time.

Haha, not just Konami. SEGA of Australia used to have that kind of thing with Blow The Cartridge's Cameron.
I guess every developers had their own black list.

Quote
Anyway. Fast forward a few years and I’m writing for a different publication in Australia, and they send Sega Australia a request for them to send me a copy of Sonic Adventure 2 for review. It arrives a week after deadline…shattered into pieces. Not “oh the post man must have dropped it, oops” kind of shattered, but the kind of shattered you can only get when you deliberately attack a Dreamcast case with a hammer for a few minutes.

I ended up having to pirate the damn game over a 56k modem connection to get the review done in time, and the game was great! Geez, everyone that worked for Sega Australia were jerks.

Link : http://blowthecartridge.com/2013/11/20/sonic-adventure-2/

Offline Tad

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Re: About the state of the gaming journalism
« Reply #9 on: June 09, 2015, 04:36:15 am »
We don't have journalists in gaming. Heck, we hardly have journalists in the newspapers anymore either as most of them just go after the usually celeb nonsense.

If you want to see a real journalist look no further then someone like Andrew Jennings who uncovered the mass corruption in sport.


Offline crackdude

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Re: About the state of the gaming journalism
« Reply #10 on: June 09, 2015, 05:10:16 am »
You mean Sonic Boom is not ACTUALLY the worst game of all time?

Well, color me baffled.
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Offline MadeManG74

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Re: About the state of the gaming journalism
« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2015, 08:08:12 am »
You mean Sonic Boom is not ACTUALLY the worst game of all time?

Well, color me baffled.

That would be Sonic 06.

Offline Barry the Nomad

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Re: About the state of the gaming journalism
« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2015, 09:00:51 am »
Sonic Boom is a licensed platformer with Sonic gameplay shoehorned in. The game functions and is playable, its just boring.

Sonic '06 is an awful broken 3D Sonic game. It's largely unplayable. Like, literally unplayable. I have tried to complete it and the game is just plain broken.

Between the two, Sonic '06 wins out as worst Sonic game of all time. Bonus points for being a main series title from Sonic Team. At least Boom can use the spin-off external developer excuse.

Offline Tad

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Re: About the state of the gaming journalism
« Reply #13 on: June 09, 2015, 09:03:00 am »
That's also not what a journalist does. That's a reviewer.

A review is nothing more then an opinion.

Offline crackdude

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Re: About the state of the gaming journalism
« Reply #14 on: June 09, 2015, 09:12:25 am »
That's also not what a journalist does. That's a reviewer.

A review is nothing more then an opinion.
If journalists did actual journalism, we would only need one single outlet.

And that outlet would be Classic Game Room.
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