When was the last time you paid your $60, brought the game home and went, "oh crap, this sucks …"? If you take advantage of all resources available, it should almost never happen.

You know, we complain a lot about what we've lost; about how the golden age(s) of gaming was – in some ways – better than the current generation. But if there's one aspect of the industry that's infinitely better for consumers, it's the availability of information. It's the combination of dozens upon dozens of reviews, tons of forums and communities where feedback and commentary is constant, and the fact that we can actually see most any game before it's on our TVs. There are plenty of trailers, videos and other footage (some from trade shows), and we even have freakin' demos these days. The bottom line is that the days are long gone when we take a shot in the dark 'cuz the box looked cool.

Plus, think of another bonus- because the best games tend to sell very well, and because most gamers do their homework, developers know that if they release a bad product, the repercussions could be dire. And they have been dire in the past; take Free Radical and Haze , for instance. Gamers doing their homework and utilizing the resources available to them is like one big quality assurance program for the industry. EA has gone on record several times saying that review scores are extremely important, and they always strive to release quality titles worthy of those elite 9+ scores. And designers know just how crucial it is to put out a great demo. If we step back and examine the whole situation, there's almost no reason for you to waste your hard-earned money again.

Sure, we might not be as thrilled with a purchase as we would like, but colossal mistakes really shouldn't be as common.

P.S. The reason I have that pic in this article is because it represents one of my mistakes from the past. I don't think I even had Internet when Master of Monsters: Disciples of Gaia came out, or if I did, I certainly didn't visit GameSpot (4.9) or IGN (4.0). I just thought it was like Final Fantasy Tactics…..aaaand it wasn't.

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Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

That's one good thing about the nowadays. Information is so freely available. But at the same time, a game will often get mediocre reviews, but many people will still thoroughly enjoy it. On the flipside, seeing awesome reviews all about is enough to raise expectations by a whole lot, and that will almost inevitably lead to disappointment. In-game footage is also enough to do that, as it shows you epic scenes, but the game doesn't live up to them. Far less common than it is in films, but it still happens.

This also makes me kind of happy. Back in the days of the Master System and Atari, my parents would buy a ton of games from the second-hand store in town for like… five bucks each. Some were fun and some just sat in the box, never to be put into the systems after the first time.
Peace.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

It's kind of sad when some great games that get a 7-7.5 are just ignored by peoples who might really enjoy it. Look at Castlevania. I think too many games get high scores these days.

shadowscorpio
shadowscorpio
9 years ago

I think multiple scores should be taken into account. There are games out there that get scores like 6.5 or 7's by one reviewer, yet get 8, 9, or even 9.5's by another. I think this is entirely normal. Everyone has different tastes and I believe games should developed to cater to different tastes, whether its striving to be blockbuster or not.

For example, a reviewer from IGN gave trinity zill o Souls a 6.5. The reasons that he gave it a lower score where reasons that actually did not bother me about the game when I played the demo. Thats not to say that many won't agree with him but its always good to try a game out for yourself and conduct your personal assessment.


Last edited by shadowscorpio on 2/25/2011 11:33:45 PM

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

I'm not saying multiple reviews shouldn't be taken into account. But the thing is, a lot of the time, reviews are pretty uniform in their complaints and overall scores.

Yes, there are occasions when there are large differences in scoring, GT5 springs to mind, but it isn't really often, and certainly not for the more mediocre games. The biggest aspect to a purchase is whether or not a game falls into your preferences. If it's a genre you love, even if it is fairly average, chances are you'll enjoy it. But, if you despise a certain genre, even a game that gets 9.5+ across the board isn't likely to make you change your mind.
Peace.

shadowscorpio
shadowscorpio
9 years ago

Precisly Lawless. You and I are making the same point, just using different avenues in explaining it.

AcHiLLiA
AcHiLLiA
9 years ago

It's a good thing I do my Homework before purchasing stuff. I'll say the last bad game I've played was the tony hawk games in the PS2, Idk why it kept sucking me in but I got the games used cheap so it wasn't really a big deal.

CH1N00K
CH1N00K
9 years ago

Couldn't agree more..I know in this generation of console that there have been a few times that I've been hyped for a game..then I start reading about some of the previews, and have decided to hold off on a game to see what everyone else says about it.

In the end I haven't been disappointed because I got what I was expecting when I finally got the game.

That being said, I can't help but feel that the internet has kind of ruined games a little bit to. Thanks to the readily available use of internet, I have found that developers haven't worked as hard (Not on all occasions) to release an amazing title right from the start. Now it seems the general business model is to put out a decent product and then update the crap out of it later on to fix all the glitches. For me that is a downside of the internet in the industry. Information good…easily updated games at a later date…bad….


Last edited by CH1N00K on 2/25/2011 9:40:20 PM

Temjin001
Temjin001
9 years ago

Ahh yes, the good old days of shopping games by cover.
Ninja Gaiden (NES) was a win.
and Deadly Towers (NES) was a fail.
Castlevania (NES) was also a win, especially Simon's Quest.

SvenMD
SvenMD
9 years ago

Haha! Isn't that the truth. But back then box art could be misleading. Look at Megamans cover!! Then you play the game and you're like, this doesn't look anything like the cover – but then you didn't care cause Megaman was freakin' awesome!!

Box art even made Spelunker look awesome! That's a fail. I don't think I've ever lived longer than 5 minutes in that game!!

Temjin001
Temjin001
9 years ago

The original Megaman quite arguably had the worst cover ever.

Dancemachine55
Dancemachine55
9 years ago

I remember getting Superman on Nintendo 64. Only could choose 1 game, and I chose that piece of garbage!!

Only one problem arises with this new fashion of great game quality, and it seems Sony is in the middle of it…

THERE ARE TOO MANY GREAT GAMES!!!!

Really!! Look at 2011 alone and the PS3 exclusive lineup itself!!! Now that review scores, demos and forums are easily accessed, it seems ALL games are relatively high to excellent quality, and we all can't keep up any longer!!

Look at Medal of Honor. Great game, from what I've heard, but there are so many other great or better titles out there that it didn't stand much of a chance in sales.

Also, franchises seem to be working very well. Dead Space, Assassin's Creed, GTA, Uncharted, Call of Duty, Killzone, Mass Effect, they are all guarenteed money-makers because they are all quality games with talented developers who are rich of their first game, and therefore can make a better sequel with their millions of dollars.

It's awesome, this really is the golden age of gaming. Hardcore games still exist (Demon's Souls, No More Heroes, Lost Odyssey, Bioshock, Mass Effect 2, etc) but the casual gamer has boosted the industry even further and created new ways to interact with electronic entertainment (Call of Duty, Wii Sports, Kinect, Move, Mario Kart, etc)

My wallet has certainly suffered this gen, and I can only feel sorry for the great developers whose great work won't see my cash until a price drop later in the year. (Sorry Assassin's Creed Brotherhood, Crysis 2, Skyrim, Homefront and Marvel Vs Capcom 3, you guys have to wait for price drops)

ZettaiSeigi
ZettaiSeigi
9 years ago

Agreed Dancemachine. I cannot believe I bought no less than 15 games in the past three months. Now I have a ton of games that need to be played!

I am not complaining that there's no shortage of excellent games out there. I just wish I have more time and money to get them all. LOL

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

It's a shame that even titles like MoH that are great in their own right are squeezed out of the consideration of many because there are a few similar games that manage to do things better.

But would you really want it any other way? What would you prefer: Having at least one top-notch game releasing every month, and missing out on some of them immediately because of a lack of time or funds, OR having no more than four elite quality games per year? The latter would free up some time, and give the lesser games a chance to get a few sales, but the former is far more appealing, as not every elite game appeals to everyone.
Peace.

Lairfan
Lairfan
9 years ago

But Medal of Honor wasn't ignored by everyone. It got at least 5 million sales overall.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

One word: Hydlide.

Jed
Jed
9 years ago

You had me scared for a minute there Ben, at first I thought this was one of those " ad articles" that I've seen on other sites. Isn't the title of it one of the slogans for gamefly?

Stay classy San Diego.


Last edited by Jed on 2/25/2011 10:22:28 PM

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

Scared me a bit too cuz of that gamefly commercial.

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
9 years ago

Oh, you're crazy. Nevah happen. ūüėČ

mid10smaradoarg
mid10smaradoarg
9 years ago

And this is why im going to try the beta for Socod 4 and i know is gonna end up bad for Zipper.

JDC80
JDC80
9 years ago

I haven't paid 60 bucks for a game in a while, and not sounding like an Gamefly ad but the two benefits I enjoy if I rent a game that sucks I can always send that sucka back and two if I really like the game I can keep it and it won't cost me much.


Last edited by JDC80 on 2/25/2011 11:29:20 PM

AnonWTF
AnonWTF
9 years ago

Ben, you should give final fantasy tactics a2 a try. Good is game is good.

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
9 years ago

Eeehhh…I have. Sorta like FFT-lite.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

Too much FF lite out there already.

MadPowerBomber
MadPowerBomber
9 years ago

The last game that happened to me with was King of Fighters XII. I was expecting another insane addition to the KoF franchise, complete with everything that KoF has been known for since 1994, and it turned out to be an online centric fighter without a great majority of what traditionally went into a KoF game. I now have 52 PS3 games alone, and I've not been too terribly disappointed with any of them the way I was with KoFXII.

BikerSaint
BikerSaint
9 years ago

So much for bad games, but here's a great deal on a great game…..

Killzone 3(brand new) for only $46.77 & free shipping.

FYI, there's only 1 available so you had better make a rush on it before someone else snatches it up….

http://cgi.ebay.com/Killzone-3-for-PlayStation-3-Move/150568494781?_trksid=p1468660.m2000036

___________
___________
9 years ago

wednesday sadly, though im use to it.
bulletstorm will help me forget all about that!

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

Which game?

___________
___________
9 years ago

quantum theory.
Kmart had it for 18 bucks so cheap i could not resist!
glad i did not though, traded it into EB and got 20 bucks for it so i actually made a 2 dollar profit!
was a good 4 hour time killer i guess, but any longer and id go insane!
not the worst ive ever played, that still belongs to naughty bear.
that games so freaking pointless!

Alienange
Alienange
9 years ago

Your Master of Monsters story made me lol. It's so true that we used to just look at the box and make a decision. I was into PC games back in the day and there was demos for the most part, but console gaming? I need reviews from both critics and gamers alike. The demos should be a real showcase for them but they don't ever seem to be.

akmdpc
akmdpc
9 years ago

The one instance that you could get burned is for those of us who like pre-order bonuses. I've sold my soul to Gamestop for in-game items. For the most part, I've been lucky with pre-ordering good games. I had a good feeling about Enslaved and Vanquish and enjoyed having the Gamestop items while getting both platinums. Reviews at best come out the week before launch with the majority after. Too late at that point.

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

The prevalence of previews, and hands-on impressions from months before should be enough for many to avoid pre-ordering a bad game. And one should be cautious of any games that don't have a whole lot of hype behind them anyway. It usually denotes a lack of confidence on the part of the developer/publisher.
Peace.

THEVERDIN
THEVERDIN
9 years ago

Mine was next gen MLB2K that wouldn't get past the second game without freezing, went and got another copy this one made it to about the 4th game. Gamestop blamed my system even after I told them that other people we're having the same problem. Enter Gamefly no more spending on bad or glitchy games.

kraygen
kraygen
9 years ago

I'd say for the most part this is true, but I have still done my homework and then gotten the game started and had a different experience than what I expected, not the total shock and awe of basing it off the box art, no, but still had some happy surprises and some let downs.

With today's insane dlc fiasco tho, I buy most of my new games under $30. I may be late to the party, but I'm dancing alone anyway, so it's just as fun for me. Mafia II should be here from amazon on monday or tuesday, $19.99 and it doesn't seem like it's been out all that long.

Excelsior1
Excelsior1
9 years ago

it has been a long time since i bought a bad game. in fact, i've bought some games recently that i've been pleasently surprised by. castlevania is a seriously underrated game. it had the great vistas and enviroments that gow3 should have had.

review scores are importantant, but we see very highly rated games that don't sell all the time. i guess all the information that's out there is great, but maybe sometimes there's a little too much.

_valdips3_
_valdips3_
9 years ago

i agree, those days homework have to be done before purchase a game, but reviews are a double edge sword imo, some sites are respectable and i trust, but others are completly biased, based only on personal tastes, for me the best review is the one that yorself made, rent the game or borrow with a friend and make the review yourself, even demos cannot be trusted, since 80% of time they not represent the final product.

SvenMD
SvenMD
9 years ago

So I guess I dont have "bad game" story, but I certainly have regretful purchases. I remember Batman Returns for the SNES – my brother and I got that one night and beat it in less than 3 hours. I couldn't believe it…. And I was pissed.

Luckily many game today have high replay value – esp if you include MP.

Ludicrous_Liam
Ludicrous_Liam
9 years ago

Last bad game I got was PES 2008…but it was £1 so no worrys xD

Teddie9
Teddie9
9 years ago

It's still gonna happen…to me.

Temjin001
Temjin001
9 years ago

Sometimes I wonder if gamers will become detached from relying heavily on critic scores, if even just a little.
Over the past year I've become much more disillusioned by critical response, even aggregate scores from Metacritic. Does Gran Turismo 5 have any business being in the 80'ish club? Quite simply, No
Because critics can seemingly just pick and choose whatever criterion they want to validate their verdict bothers me. I know I've read or skimmed through a handful of KZ3 reviews that seem to synthesize complaints with entirely subjective reasoning, even absurd reasoning. I won't go quoting EDGE magazine's or IGN's "black screen" complaints, but it's irritating. All of this just confirms to me that too many critics are holding a disproportionate amount of power. And that power is being invested into them from those who spend their money on these products. The correlation between game sales and critical acclaim is there. It's understandable. Though, I'd imagine most gamers don't want to waste $60 on a bad game–like Ben's article expresses. And the critics are going to be there with their verdict before a game's release to direct prospective sales by gamers who want a good game.
But what happens when the motives of critics become insidious? Or what happens when games become too complicated to critique by the average critic who, maybe at best, has a degree in journalism or writing?

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
9 years ago

But you don't just have to rely on critics. You've got communities and forums, as I mentioned, plus the ability to see – and many times, even play – the game before it releases.

It's just eons better than it was in the old days. You just crossed your fingers and hoped, really. It's true that with so many different critical styles nowadays, it can be tough to get an accurate reading sometimes. But most times, I'd say the Metacritic average is pretty close to right.

Temjin001
Temjin001
9 years ago

Yeah, I agree, Ben. It's nice having so many different sources for inference.
I'd say the majority of my most recent software purchases were committed before having considered reviews. Simply because I knew already that titles like KZ3 and GT5 would deliver the goods. Which probably has a lot to do with their already respectable reputation. New games, though, like Knights Contract are a bit less predictable and it's nice having informed critical opinion before risking the expense.

Excelsior1
Excelsior1
9 years ago

gt5 took hits on the clunky user interface, and its uneven presentation. ptom scored it an 8. i was a little peeved at the review scores at first, but the more i played it i sort of saw what they meant. the premimium and standard car split was a poor choice on the pd team.

hehateme
hehateme
9 years ago

i recently did that with bioshock 2, white night chronicals, and im a few levels into LBP2 and im thinking i prefer part 1 cause of the soundtrack but kz3 is keeping me very busy

Vitron
Vitron
9 years ago

My first game for my PS3 was Armored Core 4.
That was before I discovered the PSX community.

Radiohead
Radiohead
9 years ago

Haze that gamed sucked and what a waste of money.

JDC80
JDC80
9 years ago

Speaking of Haze I brought it for like four bucks and since it only cost me four dollars I can't really bash it. I wonder did anyone else notice that the main hero's voice change from in game to cut scenes?

As for really bad game I brought it had to be "Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer" I was at Best Buy, I had 10 dollars and my PS3 library was low at the time.

If you want to hear something crazy tho my sister got me "Dark Sector" for full price as a birthday gift and like three months later I found it at EB for 17 dollars.

AcHiLLiA
AcHiLLiA
9 years ago

Any of u guys enjoyed the tony hawk games on the PS2? I used to be hooked in skateboarding, was average on tricks but now I just like to longboard/cruise/carve- and go fast.

WYO1016
WYO1016
9 years ago

Haze was the last game I got duped on. Even after the mediocre reviews and critical panning, I thought that it was still one that would appeal to me. Now not only did I pay $60 for a crap game, it's not worth trading in either.