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I didn't want to threadjack the "Gamespot is teh bias" thread, so new topic:


This isn't a rant against real or perceived biases of the reviewers. Like a lot of people, I have problems with game ratings. No, not a problem with the fact that they are rated at all -- ratings can serve as useful summaries of a well-written review.


Unfortunately, the rating systems out there don't seem to accomplish this. The ten point system is particularly odd to me, when a reviewer or editor is (allegedly) busy figuring out scores down to a tenth of a point.


Here's what I would like:


No numerical rating. The rating would be

  • ,

[*]Satisfactory, or


That's it. No more rating a game 2.3/10 for the humor value. If a game is horrible, it gets an "unsat" -- period. A 2.2 or a 1.8 isn't telling me anything I need to know. This style of rating would help reduce grade-inflation (no, it wouldn't prevent it).


Then I want the reviewer to have option of attaching an "X", "I", "M" or "G" to the rating.

  • denotes cross-over appeal,

[*]I denotes innovation in one or more areas,

[*]M means the reviewer believes the game is missing something critical (like MOO3 lacking a save in multiplayer) and

[*]G denotes a game that has special genre appeal (like Steel Battalion or a baseball management sim).

There would be a fourth rating of "Excellent" or "Choice". This denotes a "good" title on top of its genre (exceptionally well-crafted) or cross-over appeal and innovation.


Depending on a reviewers take, Apex on the Xbox, for example, might earn a Satisfactory-XI, because of its RPG angle. Halo might earn a Good-X, because its elements are put together particularly well.


Isn't this more useful than seemingly random numbers?




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Hey Robot.


Give this thread a read for what to expect review wise on this site:




I think youll like what you read:).


My favourite route for reviewing is really just to write about the chosen subject and leave it at that. I've always felt just summing up one's thoughts in a soundbite or single score at the end of a review will often prompt the read to skip what's been written entirely and just look to the score.


That is exactly why there will be no score on any review here Dan.

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I think Romier has already stated that the reviews here would not have a numerical score at all.


That's fine -- the talk of ratings in the "Gamespot is teh bias" thread prompted me to post something I've thought about. My intent is certainly not to say Romier and Kelley should do things here the way I suggested!


Still, I believe that such a rating process serves a useful purpose and outweighs the negatives.


For example, suppose I don't particularly care for racing games. A summary announcing cross-over appeal helps clue me in to a review -- and a game -- that I might otherwise pass by.


Someone might read the summary and ignore the review? I know someone like this. And as long as writing reviews is not my livelihood, forget him. He isn't my intended audience anway.


Finally, an in-depth review almost needs a summary. For example, I might be describing a game to my friend Smitty (XBL: Gorkamork). When I review things, I pay attention to details and clearly articulating the good and the bad. Early in the my "review", he'll interrupt and ask me "Okay, did you like it or not?"


He isn't asking me this early on in order to ignore my in-depth review. He just wants to be able to put my cheers and jeers in context. With the context, my comments are more useful to him.


This context is even more enhanced when I know the reviewer, either personally or by reading his or her reviews for a while.




Dammit, Romier, can't you wait until I post my reply before dropping some knowledge on my ass?


Although I still think a summary can provide useful information, I'm looking forward to this site's approach to reviews -- especially the reviewer profile. Awesome. Backpacker magazine does this to a degree with its gear reviews and I love it.



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Well, again, not to harp on my own reviewing tactics, but the way I always wrote movie reviews was to write a basic full review, then sum up at the bottom with the so-called bottom line, a quick capsule summary of the pluses and minuses of the title. That way if you want in-depth, you get it, otherwise you can read the quick bit and be done.


Mind you, I still had starred reviews, and still do, but even I recognize they are completely arbitrary. I'm glad to see this site going the no-numerical rating route like CGW, which was the finest computer gaming magazine of its time (pre-starred :P).

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