Sunday, January 08, 2006

Video Game Journalism Sucks

This Article Titled The Pointlessness of Current Videogame Journalism has been making the rounds and he has a point.

Previews are a wast of time because a lot of the previews are written without the writer actually playing the game. The previews where the writer does play the game (called Hands On Previews) are always very lukewarm in opinion because the game isn't finished and they can't say the weapon selection is crap if all the weapons haven't been added yet etc.

I believe most journalists see reviews as an entertainment medium in themselves instead of an academic review of the game in question. For example no Mario has ever gotten a bad review. Readers who are upset by what a reviewer says will obviously take their readership elseware, so reviewers don't want to upset anybody by giving a bad review to a popular franchise. I have read many reviews where the reviewer hasn't played through the game at all and bases their opinion on just the first fifteen minuets of the game as they don't even hint at any of the problems latter on in the experience (Black & White is a prime example of this). And there are many times where it is painfully obvious that the reviewer isn't an experienced gamer at all. Reviewers are hired on their writing experience an not on their gaming credentials so obviously there is going to be a lack of authority in their opinions, this in itself renders their opinions uninformed and thus the review pointless.

The whole VG industry has to make reviewers happy otherwise they will write something bad as revenge and effect sales. Yet there is no need for anything to change. I was going to link here to that eWeek article by that guy saying Xbox Live sucks and the way Sony is allowing publishers to control their own service is better, but I can't seem to find it.