The seriously broken 10-point scale has resulted in a generation of gamers who have skewed views.

Well, it makes sense: If the overwhelming majority of review scores are indeed between 7 and 10, then it stands to reason that any consumer would consider anything below a 7 to be trash, 7-8 to be merely average, and 8 and up might be worth buying.

Even so, the only way to fix this is for critics to approach the review scale with more mathematical logic. Personally, I've been trying to do that all year; I've reassessed how games should be analyzed and scored based on the 10-point scale and as such, I'm giving out a lot fewer 9+ scores and more scores in the 4-6 range. But you can't go too crazy; this has to be done gradually. More reviewers have to do this and more consumers have to understand that a 10-point scale is just that- a 10-point scale.

I've been saying all along that a 7 doesn't mean a game sucks. But you really have to drive this point home many times over, or people just won't get it.

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WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
6 years ago

I don't think anyone will get it, there's this new normal where the fact that we are spoiled damages sales capabilities for good games because perfectly fun games are left in the dust due to the "best of the best only" syndrome that people live by (thereby depriving themselves of unique and new experiences outside the gaming mainstream).

SaiyanSenpai
SaiyanSenpai
6 years ago

I think it's more about the fact that we learn through years and years of schooling that anything below a 60 is a big fat "F."

I don't know anyone that was happy about getting a 60 on a test saying, "Hell yeah, above average, baby!"

(Unless that was in Engineering Physics, in which case you just made an A+)

SaiyanSenpai
SaiyanSenpai
6 years ago

A 7 out of 10 is just a C. Sure, it's not a bad game/grade, but it's not good either.

Shauneepeak
Shauneepeak
6 years ago

A 70 or 7/10 in my town is an F……

ethird1
ethird1
6 years ago

I give this article a -5. It means you suck.

Deadman
Deadman
6 years ago

7 still means the game is average, which in my opinion usually means the game is boring. I have several not bad, but boring games to back up that point if any one asks.

The 10 point scale is so similar to a school grading system. On a 10 point quiz 7=C or average. This could be why it's broken or viewed as such.

Rachet_JC_FTW
Rachet_JC_FTW
6 years ago

i am incline to disagree but thats just for u personally i can see so thats fine

frostface
frostface
6 years ago

I tend to agree with Deadman.

Having said that, a five star rating system would put a 7 at around the 3.5 star mark and that's much easier to get comfortable with imo. I think with a 10 system there's just too much range open for interpretation.

Or skip the point system altogether and just go with a 'Buy' 'Don't Buy' review.


Last edited by frostface on 11/7/2014 2:27:42 PM

DarthNemesis
DarthNemesis
6 years ago

A 7 is above average as it is a 70%. Most games get over 80 reviews so a 70/100 is a great score based on that many reviews.Remember it is the average rounded up.People fail to understand what the total score is.Either way reviews are irrelevant and only mindless drones play games based on reviews.This is the reason why I don't respect most "so called" gamers,because they don't have their own opinion.No one can sit and play a game and say "oh this is such a 7.0 game" or "this game is so 9.0". The fact is you cannot put a rating on games as it is an OPINION.When will people get that through their thick skulls?

Corvo
Corvo
6 years ago

It's too late I think at this point. People are too used to everything worth buying being an 8+ to even consider anything less than that to check out too.

Last generation killed the scores with games. Where a 5 is average and 10 is absolute perfection and a 1 being..well being hopeless.

A 7 should be worth much more than its seen since its what most games are worth. Little to no games are worth 8's 9's and especially 10's.

10 being a game with everything being top notch from story, music, writing, technical flawlessness etc…

Slowly, if all reviewers came together, and really tried to fix the scale I think it'd be possible. But seeing how the go-to places for a casual audience seem to accept bribes to score a mediocre game high scores, it would be a difficult thing to achieve.

I'd love to see a fixed review scoring system though. I would love to take game reviews seriously again. Movie reviewers are normally idiots but movies very rarely get anything over a 7, and when they do, its actually a good movie. Most of the time, hence the 'idiots' part.

Corvo
Corvo
6 years ago

I'd like to add, I was upset at The Evil Within review because, like the dude above me, people think a 7 is garbage.

SaiyanSenpai
SaiyanSenpai
6 years ago

Well, a 7 out of 10 is just a C.

Rachet_JC_FTW
Rachet_JC_FTW
6 years ago

i totally get what ever one is saying and ur right people are used to getting anything from 7 or more which is i think maybe not such a good think cos from a normal point of view anything about 50% or more is a pass so idk i'd like to think i can be a little be more objective than that

DarthNemesis
DarthNemesis
6 years ago

You are absolutely right, because if I reviewed games in my opinion GTA5, COD and Assassin's Creed would not receive anything over a 7. Some of my favorite games are just average to solid and as long as I enjoy them it is worth it.People need to get back to playing games because they enjoy them,not because they are rated high.We don't eat certain foods or watch certain movies and if they are rated a 10, we still won't want them.So why use reviews when it comes to games?

SaiyanSenpai
SaiyanSenpai
6 years ago

Ben, hear me out here for a sec…

The flaws really exist in the 10-point scale itself. Or really, how we have been taught to think about it. It's really not what you implied about the majority of review scores falling between a 7 and 10. Sure, mathmatically 5 is the median so we should be ok with that.

However, we've been in school all our lives and have ingrained in our heads that anything below a 60 is a huge and shameful "FAIL."

A 7 out of 10 is just a C.

Gamespot revised their reviews a while back to go in 0.5 point increments – because really, is there a difference between an 8.1 and an 8.3? Especially when the content is looked at through a subjective lens? But there is a difference between a B and a B+. Now it seems Gamespot has dropped the tenths digit all together since then.

Giantbomb went with a 5-star rating for their reviews and that makes a lot of sense because they recognized that all 10 point scales devolve into a 5-star rating.

1 star = Crap
2 stars = An OK game. "Meh"
3 stars = A good game, enjoyable
4 stars = A great game
5 stars = An excellent game! If you like genre, you need to get this!

TL,DR: A 5.0 out of 10.0 is not average. It's an "F."


Last edited by SaiyanSenpai on 11/6/2014 11:55:46 PM

Rachet_JC_FTW
Rachet_JC_FTW
6 years ago

when i last check 5/10 was like 50/100 which is a pass no matter which way u look at it i just finishing uni and thats they way things work so i'm not sure i follow ur logic

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
6 years ago

I don't know what school you went to but if I got 50/100 and passed my life in college would have been. Much easier.

All he is saying is that schools (here in the states) grade you as follows:
90-100 = A
80-89 = B
70-79 = C
50 and below is an F.
By the same logic that is how games are viewed when scored on a 10 or even 100 point scale. Even if the reviewers intentions were to give it a higher score, it's viewed as average if it gets a 7 out of 10 or 70 out of 100.

AcHiLLiA
AcHiLLiA
6 years ago

I see it also like this, 7 or 70/100 is okay/average, 5 or 50/100 or below is bad, 10 or 100/100 excellent.


Last edited by AcHiLLiA on 11/7/2014 1:53:12 PM

Gamer46
Gamer46
6 years ago

A 7 definitely doesn't mean bad, to be fair, it also doesn't mean 'spend $60+ on this game.'


Last edited by Gamer46 on 11/6/2014 11:54:47 PM

Rachet_JC_FTW
Rachet_JC_FTW
6 years ago

yeah well some of us around here have enough brains to figure out what ur on about ben but there are alot of people that still think in a weird way about stores i have come to think about them a bit objectivly thanks mostly to bens articles on this have helped reformulate my opinion on how to judge games review scores and how best to interpret and in some cases i have brought games and like them that were scored low such as Knack it was just my sort of game and the score didn't matter to me while i was enjoying it but i thought it deserved me i stil do no matter what its flaws were. but ur absolutely right people have a a really skewed view of game sores i think some of my friends still do

happy gaming

Rachet_JC_FTW
Rachet_JC_FTW
6 years ago

and just for the record a 7/10 is as a grade a B atleast that was last time i check it

Siege
Siege
6 years ago

Rachet, based on this and other comments of yours, I am assuming you are attending uni in the UK, is this correct? If so, some of the confusion you are experiencing is between the differences in UK and US grading systems. In UK universities, a 70 is excellent and is comparable to a 90 or 93 in US universities. In US universities, a 70 is average and is comparable to about a 50 in UK universities.

Same numbers, but their meaning is relative to the scale being used!

As an American who lectures in a UK uni, I find it very weird when my students come up to me excited that they received a 70 or 68. I still haven't gotten used to the different scale.

FAREEZ
FAREEZ
6 years ago

For me:
7=Rented or wait for price cut
8=buy or rented before buying
9=buy it and become a fanboy
10=buy right now and lick game developer ass…

kraygen
kraygen
6 years ago

Some of my all time favorite games of the ps3 generation scored between a 6.8-7.5

Scores don't matter much to me unless it's outside of my genre love. Like 3rd person shooters are fun for me, but only the best ones are going to pull me away from a straight up rpg.

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
6 years ago

I know I've said this before but I don't bother with reviews anymore. It's gotten either extremely out of control or just too biased that it's not worth my time.

At least since the PS3 came out I've never let a review dictate my decision on a game and I've realized I've actually enjoyed more games than I ever have.

Because even now (and I'll admit it) when I see a 7 it makes me wonder what's wrong with the game. So for a combination of how games are scored and just bad reviewing now days I don't look at them. Or read them. Although I must admit when I see a review for a game on here I read it whether I'm interested in it or not. But typically I've already bought the game and played it for a while before I see a review for it here.

But I will add that for a game like Knack which has a pretty low meta score, it actually would make it average by this 7 is good logic. However even your review and especially others just blasted it making it sound like it's deserving of a 2.

It's almost as if 5 is the lowest score and goes up to 10. In that case I'd much rather see a 5 point scale. While there may not be a huge variance in game scores, the picture would be a lot clearer to everyone that reads reviews.


Last edited by bigrailer19 on 11/7/2014 1:36:33 AM

Ather
Ather
6 years ago

To me:
1- What's wrong with you developers? Do you hate us?
2- Alpha. Why'd you release it? It's nowhere near finished.
3- Trash
4- Might like a small part for a once or twice play
5- OK if you need to kill time between big releases or just want some multiplayer fun
6- Have to be a fan of the series/genre. bets buy it on sale.
7 – A fun game. Not the best in the category, won't be the definitive game, but worth the price paid. Probably forget it after you beat it. A few will give it a cult like status
8- A great game. Almost certainly will have a sequel.
9 – An awesome game. A sequel for sure, lots of DLC, and everybody will be talking about it. A great way to get people not into the series/genre to consider it.
10- An experience. Even people who don't like the genre/series will be playing it. A sequel isn't even needed, but welcomed. Expect long hours playing it. Plan to find every secret hidden within. DLC's a must for all but the toughest critics of the game.

A 7 is a nice, fun game you'll enjoy. You might even rate it as an 8 yourself. Most certainly not crap.

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
6 years ago

I like this!

Beamboom
Beamboom
6 years ago

Mathematically speaking it can be defended that an average game is found in the 7-8 range. It depends on how you view it. If 5/10 means that half the game is "broken" so to say, then it is safe to say that most games are *not* 50% broken, ergo they should be in the upper half somewhere.

It really is all about the definitions. I think it's ok to relate to a system where anything less than 7 means the game got some severe flaws. And that is in practise how it is today.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
6 years ago

The broken part is important, some games that are a 6 have no broken parts and are fun as hell, it's just that the graphics and sound and dialogue are all poor.

Beamboom
Beamboom
6 years ago

… and it may then be argued that graph, sound and dialogue makes at least 40% of the game, and thus a 6 is a fair rating.

JackieBoy
JackieBoy
6 years ago

Personally I think all reviews should have standarized scale of 10 or even 5.
What I completly don't understand is Ben score scale.
I mean Ben – do you really see the difference between 7.6/10 and 7.7/10? (and please don't tell me 7.6 is worse then 7.7)
Please Ben, stick to whole digits.

bldudas1
bldudas1
6 years ago

This mentality is why so many good games get left in the dust until years later when people realize how great they are.

Anonymous
Anonymous
6 years ago

Aye. Then a bunch of welfare gamers get it for free on PS Plus and run to the internet making like they have found the Holy Grail. Then it's like "Good for you, pal, but the company has been out of business for years. Could have used some of that support when you were making anide remarks based off of a review you read. Keep it moving, sheep"

big6
big6
6 years ago

Haha Kid… yeah, that's totally me with the game RAGE. I didn't bother to look at it when it first came out.

Then, I bought it from someone for $10. Played it and really enjoyed it! In hindsight, it would have been worth the full purchase. Oh well…

MRSUCCESS
MRSUCCESS
6 years ago

This is my reaction when I see review scores …

If I like the game … "X out 10" .. Oh okay, I'm still going to buy it.

If I don't like the game… "X out of 10" – That's too bad, I wasn't going to buy it either way.

To each their own, but I don't have to rely on some "expert's" review to make my decision.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
6 years ago

Sometimes it's hard to tell if you like the game well before you play it.

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
6 years ago

I don't think it is. Based on a person's interests it's very easy to justify buying a game rather than read reviews.

I do this all the time with games. If what I've seen interests me I'll typically purchase it. Review scores are very misleading now because of the wide variance of scores available. I've been let down by games that might have a meta score of 92, but I've also thoroughly enjoyed games with meta scores of below 60 – Knack.

So I typically leave it to myself. If it's also genre I enjoy the decision is easy. If the game looks to be great that makes my decision easier.

I know what you mean though. How can anyone possibly say they like a game before playing it? I think what he meant to get at was that if there is an interest it probably be purchased.


Last edited by bigrailer19 on 11/7/2014 10:20:39 AM

White_Mocha
White_Mocha
6 years ago

Why not go with a five star grading scale? It'd be much more simple and it would align with movies, tv and music review systems.

big6
big6
6 years ago

Yeah, when a game is rated 3/5 stars, it doesn't look nearly as bad as a 6/10 or a 60/100.

I guess it's a marketing/advertising trick or something. lol

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
6 years ago

I would like to see a 5 point scale adopted. It would make the picture more clear and I think people would be more receptive of grading to the .10. It would help separate games rather than appear as meaningless.

But really I'd just like to see 1-5. 1 being bad – not recommended. 5 being Excellent – must buy.

PS3_Wizard
PS3_Wizard
6 years ago

Reviews themselves are antiquated. This day and age, all it requires is using youtube to watch gameplay of a game you are interested in. If you like what you see, rent or buy! Just read a review for insight into the miniscule aspects of the game in question.

But don't base your purchase on the review. Watch the game in action first!

JackieBoy
JackieBoy
6 years ago

Words of wisdom my friend.

big6
big6
6 years ago

Hence, why I love watching streams on the PS4!

A lot of times, people are streaming games that weren't out yet! (MGS, Drive Club, COD, etc)
Or even for games that are already out like Morder, I like watching it first, before deciding on the purchase.

AcHiLLiA
AcHiLLiA
6 years ago

Yes indeed, better idea since you can't play every single demo of a game.

Corvo
Corvo
6 years ago

See? its hopeless. No one understands the GAME REVIEWING system anymore. Its not like grading school papers. Movie reviewers do it right, they know MOVIE REVIEWS are not school grades.

Whatever though.