Does anyone trust print magazine reviews?

  • krudster 4 Nov 2002 23:05:51 597 posts
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    At the risk of sounding like an old git, but there used to be a time when you could trust magazine reviews. Nowadays, I'm forever hearing of mags (naming no names), ahem, being 'persuaded' to up their scores for certain games. Maybe this has always happened, maybe I'm just getting more cynical in my old age...But the point is, do you take any notice of mag reviews? And do you agree that review scores are waaaay too biased towards the latter end of the scale?
  • skalmanxl 4 Nov 2002 23:14:03 982 posts
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    I read them, though not said that I make any conclusions because of them. More often I get mags to read articles, rather then the reviews. I have a pretty good mind of whom I trust or don't trust when it comes to reviews. If I was forced to base a purchase of a review, I'd choose EG any time. After all, Tom did save me from that embarassing Gunvalkyrie purchase I was set on.
  • Deleted user 4 November 2002 23:19:22
    I totally agree. A few years back the games industry wasn't nearly as big as it is now and therefore game developers didn't have the cash or interest in buying reviews. Now it's a multi billion-euro industry mag reviews count for a lot more and publishers will do anything to bump up scores. I read an article on MSN a while back that talked of the little "perks" that some companies included with the review codes of games they sent to reviewers. Any Cuban cigars or Rolex’s in that Fifa 2003 package you got Krudster:)
  • skalmanxl 4 Nov 2002 23:25:17 982 posts
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    duncan wrote:
    working late eh?

    Personally I think they don't seem to enjoy them for the same reason as me.

    Not really, just not interested in going to bed right now.

    Edge however seem to focus too much on the games innovation. Often is the case that a particlar game must push the technial as well as creative boundaries in order to recieve a higher mark. Sometimes I feel like Edge can't let games be just plain fun, they need innovation as well. Something I don't wholly agree on.

    Innovation is good, but a fun game is a fun game. Disregarding innovation.
  • krudster 4 Nov 2002 23:28:39 597 posts
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    I'm, personally, all for scores being downgraded somewhat to reflect that not all games are 'must buys'. I get annoyed at the tendency for people in the games industry to think of anything less than 8/10 as being a bad score. In reality a five should be average, six = good, seven = great if you like the genre, eight = exceptional, nine = a must buy, and ten = an absolute benchmark game (very rare, and I'm thinking of Half Life standard, GTA 3 etc)

    Thoughts?
  • skalmanxl 4 Nov 2002 23:33:34 982 posts
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    Well, that's something that every publication NEED to define. No matter how standardized you think the 10-point scale is, there are always some morons who consider 7 to me the equal to 5.

    When I write a review I go back and think, would I have spent 60€ on this game? If I would, it gets a 6 or higher.
  • Alastair 5 Nov 2002 08:26:43 24,257 posts
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    krudster wrote:
    In reality a five should be average, six = good, seven = great if you like the genre, eight = exceptional, nine = a must buy, and ten = an absolute benchmark game (very rare, and I'm thinking of Half Life standard, GTA 3 etc)

    Thoughts?

    With all the fuss about scores in game reviews, why don't you drop the numeric values and use words, as illustrated above, instead?

    On the subject of mags - I have bought one mag in the past year, and that was the Edge that covered the GameCube prior to release. I used to buy N64 mag fairly regularly, partly for the reviews and partly for hints/tips. Since getting more regular internet access and discovering sites like EG and gamefaqs I've had no need to buy any mags.
  • skalmanxl 5 Nov 2002 08:34:28 982 posts
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    Alastair wrote:
    With all the fuss about scores in game reviews, why don't you drop the numeric values and use words, as illustrated above, instead?

    Pretty much every games magazine/site/whatever needs to reach out to the masses. This includes dumbing down the reviews to a point score in order to tell the lazy reader how the game did. Not everyone can analyze a text and make a good enough conclusion, sadly.

    Scores are needed unless you wish to scare away your readers. It doesn't matter that the fans of the publication says that it's good to remove the scores. I know we are a fair share of people here who would like to see scores removed. But lets face it, we maybe make 1-5 % of the entire number of visitors. To make such a change, they would scare away a huge portion of their readers. And it doesn't matter that we the regulars (regular posters that is) want something, we are in a devastating minority when it comes to this.

    Scores are needed for survival.

    Edited by skalmanxl at 08:34:28 05-11-2002
  • Blerk Moderator 5 Nov 2002 08:53:39 48,222 posts
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    I buy mags for demos, that's all. There's no point even reading the reviews because you it's obvious in many cases that they haven't even played the final game. Eurogamer and Digitiser are the only places I trust for honest reviews.
  • Nemesis 5 Nov 2002 14:57:28 19,711 posts
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    I used to read PC Gamer with a passion, but I haven't picked up a copy for about 2 years now.

    The only magazine I will read is the OXBM, partly because I have a subscription, but also because they seem to have a genuine affection for the console in question. The articles on Live! this edition, paired with the SC demo, made for a good purchase IMO.

    But I wouldn't purchase a game based on a single review. It's subjective. What I like someone else may not. Just let me know if it's a complete howler and I'll make the judgement myself.

    As for the Ninendo mag; how can you respect a publication that gives you free stickers for your console.
  • skalmanxl 5 Nov 2002 14:58:36 982 posts
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    As for the Ninendo mag; how can you respect a publication that gives you free stickers for your console.

    They...um...what?
  • Nemesis 5 Nov 2002 15:00:32 19,711 posts
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    This edition you get Zelda stickers to put onto your console. To decorate it. And these are the people who want to get away from the 'kiddie' image.

    They were doing so well too. The last few editions we got a disc wallet and a dust cover.
  • Lalaland 5 Nov 2002 15:03:22 20 posts
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    I trust PC Zone they went shit about 2-3 years ago but they've changed their scoring system to be a lot harder since to pretty much what Duncan described and it works very well. The humour is what I buy it for as much as anything else to be honest although they've been doing some pretty good journalism of late too.
  • Mr_Sleep 5 Nov 2002 15:07:15 23,333 posts
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    Nemesis wrote:
    I used to read PC Gamer with a passion, but I haven't picked up a copy for about 2 years now.

    Same here, I stopped reading it when their reviews started reading like stand up comedy, they were funny but not what I wanted...plus I have the net!
  • Pirotic Moderator 5 Nov 2002 15:07:40 20,642 posts
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    Dont you just hate people who put stickers on consoles! i notice girls tend to smother the console in every sticker they can find, spent about 2 hours getting all the sonic ones off an old megadrive.
  • eviltobz 5 Nov 2002 15:07:41 2,511 posts
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    ninty mag needs to follow suit and get a few demos going, the only reason that i ever buy either the xbox or ps2 mags is to play demos of games that interest me. Thats the reason behind me getting ico and aggressive inline, and its the reason that i'm looking forwards to battle engine aquila. if i hadn't played to demo of sm:s in gamestation there's no way on earth that i'd've ever bought a f@*king mario game. demos are important.

    and anything to do with dragonball z or transformers.
  • Nemesis 5 Nov 2002 15:12:21 19,711 posts
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    People who put stickers on consoles (Ooooh look, this one glows in the DARK - best put that one on right over the air vents) should be led to a small nasty dark room. It's just not right.

    I know some people on here give it shit, but Edge is still a good magazine to read, but maybe they shouldn't bother with the reviews. They are so small it's almost like the budget release columns you get in other mags. I generally skip over their reviews to be honest.
  • Alastair 5 Nov 2002 15:13:13 24,257 posts
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    Nemesis wrote:
    As for the Ninendo mag; how can you respect a publication that gives you free stickers for your console.

    Hey, I never said I respected it, just used it!
    :o)
  • skalmanxl 5 Nov 2002 15:16:51 982 posts
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    I know some people on here give it shit, but Edge is still a good magazine to read, but maybe they shouldn't bother with the reviews. They are so small it's almost like the budget release columns you get in other mags. I generally skip over their reviews to be honest.

    Yeah, they have some of the best and most insightful articles in the industry, but some scores are just plain wrong. Seeing as they need innovation to score a game high...
  • Scientist 5 Nov 2002 16:06:12 1,197 posts
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    On a similar theme, what do people think of film mags and their reviews? Or music mags?
  • Rico 5 Nov 2002 17:43:28 116 posts
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    krudster wrote:
    = exceptional, nine = a must buy, and ten = an absolute benchmark game (very rare, and I'm thinking of Half Life standard, GTA 3 etc)
    Well, there you are then. I thought GTA3 was average-to-good, but no way a benchmark game. Not even a 9 or an 8. Reviews are down to the reviewer, natch, so I prefer to use demos or borrowed games to make decisions. But no, I don't trust print review scores a great deal, and yes I think they are artificially inflated at times, and generally overscored.
  • MrWorf 5 Nov 2002 18:10:26 63,798 posts
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    I don't think anyone trusted the OMN reviews, :\
  • Deleted user 25 November 2010 10:50:19
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