Game Reviewing Rant

I am so FUCKING tired of having games get blasted in reviews for not having multiplayer modes. “WAH WAH WAH This is a great game and it rocks and everything is fantastic but WHY NO MULTIPLAYER?”

If a game doesn’t have multiplayer, you know what that makes it? A NON-MULTIPLAYER GAME. Like you know what they call movies that aren’t funny? NOT COMEDIES. So bitching about Schindler’s List because it wasn’t funny makes you a GODDAMN MORON. And bitching about a solo game not having Multiplayer makes you a GODDAMN LOSER.

Not every game needs to have the ability for you and your dumbshit friends to play together and call each other faggots. Get that through your fucking skulls!

I remember back on the message board I used to hang out on we were talking about JigZone and someone starts whining that you can’t play against anyone. YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT COMPETITIVE JIGSAW PUZZLE BUILDING. GET A GODDAMN GRIP.

Can people no longer be entertained unless they can hop on the internet and deliver punishing defeat to another assbrained moron while insulting them?

Online gaming isn’t my thing. I understand it is for some people. That’s fine. Just like I personally like sci-fi films, but I understand that many people don’t. Also fine. So I don’t go through the romance section at the video bitching that “Love is Noce” doesn’t have robots in it, I instead go to the Sci-Fi section and bitch that all the movies there are made for idiots, but that’s another story.

I, myself, have been heard to whine about some multiplayer games that have no single-player option. Say, Acheron’s Call or EverQuest.

Thing that gets me BIG time is people whinging about the graphics quality in games deliberately intended to be backwards compatible. Not everyone can afford some hyper amazing graphics card with 1gig of video ram etc etc etc.

When a game is made for its plot and its playability, it should be judged for that. Multi-million frame rates are not the be all and end all, nor are photo-realistic graphics.

Agreed, istara. Nor are all games meant to be in 3-D. Fortunately that little fad seems to have died down, but for a while there you could have the greatest game in the world, but if it wasn’t 3-D polyginal graphics, no one was interested.

When the revolution comes and the game reviewers are first up against the wall, I’ll be right there in the firing squad with you.

I’m not too sure who I agree with more… Lego or istara. I gotta go with istara as it bugs the living fuck out of me to see the following in PC Gamer:

“The dazzling game play, actual, intelligent NPC’s and bots, and the most inventive level design I have seen since Game Y would give this game a 95, but the GeForce2-quality craptastic graphics and occasional clipping issues force me to give this game a 70.”


Ugh - I run my own videogame reviews/news site and I know exactly what you mean. I think there are some games that lend themselves to a multiplayer mode, but if it’s not there, then you don’t count that against the game, unless it was listed as being there on the box (see Extreme Paintbrawl and their promise of AI being in the game).

The graphics gripes also bother me. One of my favorite games of all time is Jumping Flash - I have no idea why, I think it’s because about 3 hours out of any day, I’ll have it’s music stuck in my head. The graphics are terrible, but the gameplay is fun, so it’s still a good game. Same with hundreds of NES and SNES games, they’re good no matter how they look. Also, games that look good but aren’t fun coughquake3cough get reviews that are way too high. Doom 3 - it’s a tech demo, not a game, it will be fun when someone else takes it and makes a game out of it.

The last main problem I have with game reviewers are that they don’t take into account that most people don’t play games as much as they do. They don’t have time to level up for 20 hours before beating a boss, or attempting a jumping puzzle 300 times before finally getting it once. Some people want a realistic idea of how hard a game is before going and buying it. I think google needs a new language, ‘video game reviewer’ that changes the phrase “this game is just hard enough” to “don’t buy this if you want to keep your hair, it will make you cry and whimper in the corner then beat your dog.”

ps. craptastic needs to be removed from PC Gamer’s vocabulary, along with Rob Smith (guy who killed PC Accellerator) from the position of EIC. That man can ruin anything he touches - I remember when I could trust PC Gamer for reviews…

I miss PC-Accellerator. :frowning:



I’m a freelance game reviewer. Do I mention that a game lacks multiplayer? Yup, sometimes. Especially if I feel it was the sort of game that would benefit from it. Certainly not with games I don’t feel need it.

Do I mention crappy graphics and grade down for it? Yup, again sometimes. Some games warrant a mention on their graphics. Will it be the primary criteria for which I grade a game? Not at all. I loved Geneforge, and my review reflected it. Graphics? Dated like you haven’t seen in years. I thought it was better than Neverwinter Nights. I can’t wait until Geneforge 2 is out.

And I’ll let you in on a secret. The review score you see is not always the review score the reviewer gave it. Sometimes our editors override our scores. Not often, but sometimes.

Did no-one else think some bits in Schindler’s List were funny? Tragic, too, of course, but to me doign that seemed to make the rest seem so much more effectively bleaker.

FWIW, I’ll agree with the rest of the rant.

Reviewing this smiley is a mixed experience. On the one hand, it has a kind of minimalist old-school charm; a moving reminder that, hyperbole aside, people are basically good eggs, just hobbling along as best they can in industry constraints and expectations. And it installed without difficulty, and it was refreshing to have it up and running without the usual delays of swapping discs.

But on the other hand, it uses a woefully inadequate color palatte on even a mid-level modern machine; it consists entirely of flat, low-resolution sprite, and doesn’t use realtime lighting effects that consumers had come rightly to expect even three generations of video cards ago. The multiplayer component seems to only be a tacked-on add-on, with a baffling lack of user interactivity. Mod support seems completely lacking, and even more baffling, there is no uninstall option–users will need to manually edit their registries, a process that can easily leave traces with unintended after-effects. (A patch to correct this is available. --ed.)

In summary, while rewarding to hardcore fans of the niche genre, it just doesn’t have the broader appeal or replayability necessary to give it more than two out of five frags.

I’d post a big grin smiley in response to your post, Drastic, but I’m afraid we might end up in an endless smiley-review-smiley-review loop and cause the servers to explode. :wink: [sub]Damn, I did it anyway.[/sub]

Man but I miss MS-DOS. :sigh:


What I really, really hate, is when the idiots at mags like PC Gamer punish a game simply because it is an adventure game. I have seen reviews where the writers blithely insult an excellent game simply because it’s not an action game.

Note to the reviewers: Just because a game that doesn’t involve killing people doesn’t mean it’s boring. We don’t all have the attention span of a 2 year old.

PS: Wasn’t PC Accelerator the short lived magazine that featured a half-naked woman on the cover every issue? I honestly can’t explain in words how much I disliked the testorone filled magazines like boot that briefly flourished in the 90’s. How difficult is it to understand that women gamers exist? How fucking difficult is it to have a little respect for the other gender, instead of constantly objectifying and degenerating women? The message it sends me is that our only place in gaming is on magazines covers showing skin.

I don’t really give a fuck about half-naked woman–I’m all for them. What bothered me is how the constant pandering to the lowest denominator of male intelligence showed me that these magazines did not give a flying fuck about my patronship, or the patronship of every other female gamer out there. Good riddance to bad rubbish.


I seem to remember the box to Tomb Raider 2 promising multplayer. Am I right? I haven’t played a Tomb Raider game since… god they got derivative fast.

Yeah, I’ll jump on this bandwagon, if y’all don’t mind. I’ve tried a couple of online games that I enjoyed in single-player. It blew walrus chunks. Since we don’t have a cable modem hookup, about the most intense online gaming experience we can get into is checkers, possibly a rousing game of tic-tac-toe.

Does every damn game put out by every publishing house need to be written for the absolute state-of-the-art, just shipped this month, top of the line hardware? I understand wanting to take advantage of the latest tech, but c’mon people, give us a break, here.

That game you released all of six months ago that sold like water in the Sahara? We’re all excited that you’ve decided to continue the story-line, and give us more neat stuff to do in that game world, but please consider that if the minimum required processor speed goes from a P2-300mHz, to a P4-2.1gHz, maybe, just maybe you concentrated a bit too much on eye candy, and not quite enough on storyline, playability, and fun.

Software houses keep flaming out left and right, and none of them seem to grasp that the reason just might have something to do with the fact that the target audience can afford to either buy their latest release, or buy the hardware that’ll support it, but not both at the same time.

Hey guys? If I’ve gotta shell out the bucks for a new graphics card, more memory, or a faster processor/motherboard to play the damn thing, that $39.99 game is gonna cost me just a tad more than that, so I’ll spend my money elsewhere, and instead of getting, say $19.99 for a barely improved game engine with a bunch o’ new missions, which is what you could have done, you’ll get a big fat goose-egg from me.

“Oh, waah, our new 2 years in the making masterpiece game, that everyone’s been hassling us about since we started developement, isn’t selling well at all!”

Well, dipshit, that’s because most of us can’t afford a goddamned Cray just to play a friggin’ shoot-em-up game, which, despite your two years of intensive work, is still gonna be released with at least two bug-patches worth of Mack truck sized holes in the code, that you could have avoided by playtesting it on a second machine, before you put the fucking thing on the shelves!"

pant pant pant

Sorry, what were we talking about again?

[sub]Nevermind, I’m gonna go reinstall Thief 2, and play it in the dark with the sub-woofer turned way up for a couple hours. Poopheads.[/sub]

I heartily agree, Legomancer. This trend toward on-line gaming really annoys me. I have no interest in playing with/against someone who isn’t already my friend. I have no interest in being called a f4g or a n00b by some 13-year-old I don’t know. If I’m going to get trash-talked during a game, it’s going to be from my friend sitting right next to me.

I like single-player games, damnit, even if that means switching off the controller with my girlfriend when we’re playing Vice City.

Even a game on the greatness level of Grand Theft Auto is not immune to this. I would be a very rich man if I had a nickel for every idiot that ever posted on GameFAQs “GTA would be so much better online!” No, it wouldn’t. I defy you to come up with a way to make this game online that didn’t somehow result in you getting killed every 5 seconds, what with the amount of mayhem that would be going on around you with multiple Tommy Vercettis going on killing sprees.

I agree. I don’t trust reviews in general, especially game reviews. All I need to do is read the last paragraph because that’s the only place they ever mention the only things we need to know. Everything before that is filler. I don’t need three pages on how beautiful the game renders a sunset, and why do you think I care more about that than how actually fun it is to play or how bug-ridden it is? Seldom does a review mentions bugs before the last paragraph, like the game not working on half the systems its run on is a trivial issue.

Wait, I’m not the only person who’d almost always rather play alone? And I’m not the only person who doesn’t give a rat’s ass about online gaming? Holy crap.

Have I mentioned lately that I love this board?