Analysts, developers and publishers alike all agree that review scores are absolutely crucial in this industry.
Take Crytek executive producer, Nathan Camarillo, for instance: in his view, if a studio wants to make a big splash in the industry, they need to produce titles that average over 90% on the score meter. In speaking about the potential of Crysis 2 , Camarillo addressed EA Partners boss David DeMartini's claim that scores for the anticipated sequel will average about 90%.
"I think you have to be 90 plus to make an impact in any genre now. The quality bar is so high and publishers and developers have put so much effort against high quality games.
If you want to be recognised at all, regardless of genre, like anything you need to create the highest quality product possible and anything else is not going to get noticed."
In general, quality does get rewarded in this industry. If it hadn't been for the majority of critics wholeheartedly recommending Heavy Rain last year, it likely would never have sold between 1.5 and 2 million copies. The initial expectations were way below that. This is only one example; the great games tend to sell great. So yeah, if Crysis 2 scores high, it'll sell better.
Even so, gamers will always have their preferences. It wouldn't matter if the game in question nailed down high 9s; if a person doesn't like shooters, he/she won't care, right?
Related Game(s): Crysis 2