“Best Game Of The Year”? In April?

Portal 2 came out recently and already the industry is already giving positive reviews. My opinion is still out on how accurate on how these magazines and media outlets are getting this information or it’s their own opinion. For one thing every time something comes out that you have to pay 20 dollars and over, PC Gamer seems to be like “OMG this is nice. Game Of The Year, published April 2011”. This infuriates me considering how one sided that big coin is, imagining someone behind a desk making probably 50 grand a year just to say “Game Of The Year” for the next 365 days or until award season is out.

In my opinion, I don’t follow large outlets and use my own personal experience to rate games. However I always put down a small disclaimer as part of my opinion so people know “this guy likes this type of play style and genre so he’s rating from his perspective” rather than “is it really that good? I’ll take a chance”. For the most part most of my reviews are within circles of people and it’s usually pretty honestly on engine utilization, controls and overall content. I’m well focused into mechanics and story since most games now lack highly such making a cookie cutter game. I would give a few examples but it would cause backlash from some large groups of fanatics (-cough- Call Of Duty, Medal Of Honor, Battlefield –cough-), nonetheless the ratings and raving reviews from a professional level seem more from a fan boy than from a critic. Have you ever heard of a negative game review? Probably haven’t since people want to sensationalize every review so the companies can suck you out nice and hard; not in a good way.

To my fellow players and bloggers if you  are reviewing games on your WordPress, Youtube, newpaper articles and every piece of media; this is a plea to use better phrases to not generalize reviews like it’s good for all ages or for just something to pull out so everyone can read it then buy it  Make the reader think about and consider it for themselves and not just tell them. Such language in certain articles is how you put down “Game Of The Year” and other similar abstract phrases. If it’s April, you can’t whip it out and say “Game Of The Year”. This probably not unlikely to impossible. Say this only if it’s the last month of the whole damn year. This goes for “Month”, “Day”, and “Of All Time” (I’m talking to those people who like to follow the shoes of Kanye West). “Of All Time” may only be appropriate if you absolutely are going to die within 48 hours or an apocalypse will doom all electronic media and you want to just let it all out.  Secondly and yes, I’m not done yet. When you write a frickin’ review, put down “in my opinion” or “I think” since a review is mostly an opinion piece unless you are just breaking down the game into it’s artistic elements. If you don’t know what art is, visit a gallery; I implore you so to view actual art to understand it. Also introduce yourself to the read as what kind of gamer you are; “I’m in it for the visual appeal”, “I like games that are very team based involving communication and such”, “The fast paced action is really appealing to me and thus why I like this game”. On top of that, explain why and back it up with stuff from the game no matter how detailed you have to get into the game whether it is a specific area of the game or the story; whatever it is, back it up. Finally, don’t repetitive put down “best game ever” since it shows no class and no recognition of a good game in the point of a review or critic since “best game ever” is neither an opinion or a method of backing up anything except your lack of understanding of such matters. Using it is like reverse levelling in World Of Warcraft; I know it’s not possible, but that’s what it is if you say it.

If you are from marketing for one of those big game companies, unfortunately this is truth. Even truthfully saying, you really have no choice but to put it up as a catch. For that, I pity you greatly. My recommend you release a demo and let players take a crack at it and maybe you would see some more interesting views on your product. Also for those who don’t follow reviews and go from what you know as a player and rebel against such atrocious reviews, I admire you for defying the odds into buying games that are worth playing; that is overall legendary in this industry and you have my respect as one of those people. To everyone, just think critically when you buy games. You are the bottom rung that supports both crap and golden games; when you buy, you are support more than just your favourite game. You are supporting how they are operating and how they’re taking the game and industry. You are unofficially buying into something that may turn out a dud or complete genius; this genius is either making a good game or robbing your gullible ass every 70-80 dollars per month. In short, if you buy; buy for yourself and not because a review said it was good. “Because they said it’s game of the year” or “it’s good because of this guy saying it so” is the equivalent of that very reviewer with shovel in hand taking pleasure into burying your head in the sand.

As for Portal 2, I recommend a try on the original. If you like the first one because of the mechanics and story appeal as a interactive narrative of a troubled AI, think about getting the second one. It might not be “Game of the Year” material, but the new characters introduced to you kind of play parody on the success of the original character. Still a FPP (First Person Puzzler), but with a tad more with the new Source engine that seems to be the same one from Left 4 Dead and it’s successor. Definite try only if you played the first; otherwise, try the first for the sake of wondering what happened.

Peace out folks, until next weeks instalment. As always, raving or raging this article? Feel free to leave a bit of something here. Maybe I’ll get back to you if it’s good. Also, I’m kind of filtering out spam. But as long as I know you’re blog is legitimate, you won’t be marked down for spam (I’m looking at you, people with “enhance your Facebook/MySpace with backgrounds”).


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