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Ask Slashdot: Why Are Some Great Games Panned and Some Inferior Games Praised? (soldnersecretwars.de) 145

dryriver writes: A few years ago I bought a multiplayer war game called Soldner: Secret Wars that I had never heard of before. (The game is entirely community maintained now and free to download and play at www.soldnersecretwars.de.) The professional reviews completely and utterly destroyed Soldner -- buggy, bad gameplay, no single-player mode, disappointing graphics, server problems and so on. For me and many other players who did give it a chance beyond the first 30 minutes, Soldner turned out to be the most fun, addictive, varied, satisfying and multi-featured multiplayer war game ever. It had innovative features that AAA titles like Battlefield and COD did not have at all at the time -- fully destructible terrain, walls and buildings, cool physics on everything from jeeps flying off mountaintops to Apache helicopters crashing into Hercules transport aircraft, to dozens of trees being blown down by explosions and then blocking an incoming tank's way. Soldner took a patch or three to become fully stable, but then was just fun, fun, fun to play. So much freedom, so much cool stuff you can do in-game, so many options and gadgets you can play with. By contrast, the far, far simpler -- but better looking -- Battlefield, COD, Medal Of Honor, CounterStrike war games got all the critical praise, made the tens of millions in profit per release, became longstanding franchises and are, to this day, not half the fun to play that Soldner is. How does this happen? How does a title like Soldner, that tried to do more new stuff than the other war games combined, get trashed by every reviewer, and then far less innovative and fun to play war games like BF, COD, CS sell tens of millions of copies per release and get rave reviews all around?
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Ask Slashdot: Why Are Some Great Games Panned and Some Inferior Games Praised?

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  • Uhh. Money (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 30, 2016 @07:03PM (#53581739)

    Fly in to see and test the game. Free swag. Pictures with the hot ladies. Advertising money for your website.....

    • Re:Uhh. Money (Score:5, Informative)

      by lgw ( 121541 ) on Friday December 30, 2016 @07:11PM (#53581805) Journal

      Fly in to see and test the game. Free swag. Pictures with the hot ladies. Advertising money for your website.....

      AKA: lack of ethics in game journalism.

      But it's less about the bribes IMO than the simple fact that if you don't consistently give good reviews to a publisher, they lock you out of pre-release review copies. Be nice, or your review comes out a week after your competition.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Also because a lot of people are lying when they say they want honest reviews. They love consuming hype.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          This is, sadly, true. Look at when a highly anticipated (usually franchise) game is reviewed before release, and if the review isn't overflowing with praise like they thought it would be, they're flying into fits of rage and accusing the reviewer of bias and demanding that someone else review the game. One of the more notorious cases of this was that Wii Zelda game.

        • They love consuming hype.

          Sadly true.

          In their heads they always want to believe they're doing the latest, greatest thing. Even if it's not.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Desler ( 1608317 )

        Or the game was simply buggy and had server problems at launch. Nope, it's clearly got to be a journalistic conspiracy against the game. *rolls eyes*

        • Or the game was simply buggy and had server problems at launch.

          You mean like Battlefield 4?

        • by myrdos2 ( 989497 )

          Exactly. Just look at the summary:

          Soldner took a patch or three to become fully stable Reviewer: buggy, server problems

          simpler -- but better looking -- ... games got all the critical praise Reviewer: disappointing graphics

          multiplayer war game Reviewer: no single-player mode

          From the summary alone, it looks like the reviewers hit the nail on the head. They can only review what they've received, without patches that may or may not be added in the future.

      • Re:Uhh. Money (Score:4, Insightful)

        by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) <mojo@Nospam.world3.net> on Friday December 30, 2016 @07:28PM (#53581933) Homepage Journal

        This game got bad reviews. Cheeky they didn't bribe anyone.

        Your argument falls flat when you look at games like No Man's Sky. Massively hyped, Sony certainly not short of bribe money, and yet it was panned by most reviewers.

        The biggest problem in gaming today is pre-ordering. And DLC, but mainly pre-ordering.

        • by Calydor ( 739835 )

          There may very well be a drop-off point where the reviewer says, "No one is going to believe me if I praise the wonderful implementation of multiplayer in No Man's Sky!" But other than that it goes something like:

          Run-of-the-mill game with no innovation? "Like the classics, intuitive gameplay like you've played it for years already!"
          Indie game with tons of innovation (admittedly both good and bad)? "Confusing and non-intuitive, tries to reinvent the wheel."

          • [citation needed]

            Seems you couldn't have posted numerous real examples if this were true not fake quotes. Oh and Ars Technica gives indie games good reviews all the time and have panned AAA games.

          • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

            In other words you just have different criteria for evaluating games than the reviewer does. It's not corruption, it's just that you need to find a reviewer who likes the sort of games you do.

        • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

          The reality is, nothing to with anything but probability over time. It depends how many people see the game, who those people are, whether or not they will like the game, if they know anyone who has and plays the games, if they come across particular web sites they trust featuring the game, how much money they have to buy how many games, so those probability outcomes will drive wide spread game purchases. They attempt to manipulate those outcomes but each time the use a particular manipulation with bad game

        • by lgw ( 121541 )

          I'm not making an "argument", merely stating how the industry works. Sure, a sort of "bribery" happens, in the sense of gala events, but the real incentive is the stick, not the carrot. Ask Jim Sterling about that - he's been banned from review copies by just about everyone, and had to survive as an independent reviewer since that made him poison to the magazines (not to mention sued for $10M by Digital Homicide).

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Fly in to see and test the game. Free swag. Pictures with the hot ladies. Advertising money for your website.....

      That was a two way street. All that stuff was both expected and demanded by both sides.

      Most of my game dev career was in the era of paper mags, it might be a bit different now it's almost all online, but I suspect not. We had a reviewer call us up once and tell us that our competitor that year was flying him out to playtest the game, with a weekend on the nearby ski slopes, and what were we offering. Guess who got 9/10 "Must have this Xmas" in the December issue, and guess who got 6.5/10 "Lackluster copy of

  • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) <mojo@Nospam.world3.net> on Friday December 30, 2016 @07:06PM (#53581759) Homepage Journal

    This happens with everything. Movies, books, music... With a large enough population of players there are bound to be some who enjoy games that most of the world didn't enjoy, add then you have some that are just overlooked.

  • 3 Major Gaming Scandals That Were Buried | Fact Hunt
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?... [youtube.com]
    Beware its a monetized youtube vid so expect an ad roll.

    • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

      by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

      I was kinda wondering if this question was a GamerGate troll trying to give the "ethics in journalism" cover some credibility.

      Just because most reviewers didn't like a game you enjoyed, doesn't mean they are corrupt. If that were the case, every opinion that contradicts would be evidence of corruption. Oh, wait...

      • by sims 2 ( 994794 )

        I watched the video a couple weeks ago IIRC it was only talking about crappy games that had gotten great reviews including one that used fake screenshots that weren't actually from the game.

      • Don't you get it? The reason why these AAA titles get such high review praise is because women who make small unknown games have relationships with members of the games journalism ... sometimes the relationship is even sexual! Don't you see this clear connection?

  • by Sowelu ( 713889 ) on Friday December 30, 2016 @07:08PM (#53581773)

    Not everyone values the same features in the same way, and it's really really easy to make assumptions. Complexity vs simplicity, replay value vs. seeing everything the first time through, etc. Variety doesn't give an inherently better experience compared to something well polished. Really tiny changes to things like matchmaking can vastly change the experience, and really small UI stumbling blocks, can actually be a massive frustration; not because some users are dumb, but because they want something with literally zero frustrations in the limited time they can play. There's not even anything inherently wrong with players who really like shiny graphics. If that's what they enjoy, then good on them.

    Even assuming that more accurate physics makes a more playable game seems pretty disingenuous.

    • by EzInKy ( 115248 )

      Exactly! I have no interest in any computer game that forces online play, and that goes treble for multiplayer. Others have no interest in playing without being online and having hundreds or thousands of enemies to dismember. Gaming is a personal thing.

  • by Moof123 ( 1292134 ) on Friday December 30, 2016 @07:09PM (#53581777)

    Food critics will pan KFC, but if it is exactly what you are aching for RIGHT now it will be hard to believe people wouldn't eat it everyday. It doesn't make the critics wrong, but rather that tastes vary.

    • Food critics will pan KFC, but if it is exactly what you are aching for RIGHT now it will be hard to believe people wouldn't eat it everyday. It doesn't make the critics wrong, but rather that tastes vary.

      And food reviewers these days seem to really love those tiny little plates with tiny little portions of very heavily dressed up, colorful and pretty-to-look-at, very carefully laid out 'food' on them. Give me home cooking any day.

      Why do some people like food other people hate? MYSTERY!

      • by Anonymous Coward
        Uhm, no offense but what you describe is (bad) 80s cuisine. Have you been to any good restaurant lately?
      • Bingo - and places also lie on the menu.

        When I was dating my wife, our first date was my dime at a high end Chinese restaurant that had "all of the above"; entries, desserts, food bar. It was in the middle of performance season and I ate two meals (which opened her eyes wide, she thought I was getting some food to go as well as eat then). After season, she took me out to one her fav bistros. I spotted "rack of lamb", one of my favorites. TWO FRIGGIN' TINY LITTLE RIBS (seriously, the smallest I have
    • Food critics will pan KFC, but if it is exactly what you are aching for RIGHT now it will be hard to believe people wouldn't eat it everyday. It doesn't make the critics wrong, but rather that tastes vary.

      If you are craving, it means you are hungry. What the body wants most when hungry is a quick dose of calories sugars and fats. Taste be damned. Once the brain associates KFC or whatever junk food peddler you have close by with this quick fix that's exactly where it will push you to go next time the body sends it those hunger signals

      • Crave just means a powerful desire for. It can mean you're hungry or it can mean you love a certain food and have just decided that's what you want now. While shopping the other day I spotted some lobster. Hadn't had it in a long time and suddenly craved it so I bought two tails. I was not hungry.

  • How much fun you have playing a game is all about entirely subjective things. Theres no objective way to measure how fun a game is. Different people enjoy different things about games and will change how they feel at different times in their lives, based on their experiences. Going back in middle age and playing a game you loved as a teen you will likely have a very different experience. You might like games that I hate. I might like games you hate. People are different and people change.

    Reviews can't reall

    • This isn't even a 'story'. ...which is why it's posted as an "Ask Slashdot" and not a story. "Ask Slashdot" is always questions from the readership, not a link to some piece of news.

  • See title.

    The last, oh 20 years, has been about graphics over gameplay.

    >making it through the first thirty minutes

    Time is money, people. If it's not reviewable in 15 minutes, it's going to get a bad review.

    --
    BMO

  • Why would games be different than any form of artistic expression, like books, movies, music, paintings, sculpture, architecture? Different people value different things, and sometimes even when there's some critical consensus, you might radically disagree with the critics. Check out Rotten Tomatoes [rottentomatoes.com] sometime to see if there's any 95% fresh movies you hate or 37% fresh movies you love. I'm sure you'll find that there are indeed some.
  • by MobyDisk ( 75490 ) on Friday December 30, 2016 @07:12PM (#53581807) Homepage

    My theory is that soldner was buggy, had bad gameplay, had no single-player mode, had disappointing graphics, and server problems.

    While you point out that soldner was innovative, you don't refute any of the criticisms made of the game. So it seems like you already know the answer. Perhaps, to you, those things could be overlooked because it was so innovative. That might work for geeks and indie fans, but the general public needs things to work the first time. The game is a decade old. Even if the bugs are fixed now, it is too late to change history.

    The metacritic reviews for soldner [metacritic.com] seem to confirm the criticisms. Even the positive reviews complain it is buggy.

    Here's the top user reviews:

    ...if people will try using the online patches then they will think "hey look Söldner isn't buggy", instead of thinking "buggy piece of s**

    It's a shame there's so many negative reviews, but what you have to realize is these reviews were written over ten years ago, the game is still going

  • People have a very drastic view on what is great. Some people want a game with polished graphics and complex story. While others want a game with simple graphics and something you can play for a few minutes and put down. Then you got all the people in the middle. So you compromise and make something that while may not be great will not be considered a disaster as well. So you get an optimal number of people using it.

    This is the same reason say the News doesn't cover the topics in details that they dese

  • Too naive to live (Score:4, Informative)

    by hyades1 ( 1149581 ) <hyades1@hotmail.com> on Friday December 30, 2016 @07:18PM (#53581843)

    "How does a title like Soldner, that tried to do more new stuff than the other war games combined, get trashed by every reviewer, and then far less innovative and fun to play war games like BF, COD, CS sell tens of millions of copies per release and get rave reviews all around?"

    Simple. Because Soldner isn't, in a roundabout way, paying the reviewers' salaries. There's no way the reviewers can make money off it, and it's competition to games made by companies that give them money, freebies and other nice stuff.

    • by Desler ( 1608317 )

      No, it got bad reviews because was a buggy piece of shit when launched. No amount of whinging and invented conspiracies will change that.

      • Who said anything about "conspiracies"? If I let it be known that people who flatter me on Facebook will get a few bucks for their trouble, does it take a "conspiracy" to ensure that I'll get a lot of people saying nice things about me?

        Try not to be such a tool.

        • I'm not really sure if you're trying to parody gamergate or not. Poe's law, it seems always applies.

          And if you're not, the original poster and the reviewers all agreed the game was buggy. It doesn't take any kind of corruption to see why reviewers gave a buggy game a low rating. Unless of course you mean the gamergate definition which is more or less "anything that disagrees with me is corruption, double so if it's from a feeemale".

  • 1) First impressions can determine how much effort people will make to learn a new game interface and take the time to get familiar with game modes and strategies. A basic tutorial mode or introductory single player mode is usually the thing that draws me in and carries me thru to trying the multiplayer modes.
    2) After that there needs to be ready access to servers with people on them. This is always difficult before a game has gained popularity.
    3) Community feeling and friendliness towards new players is

  • Ask Slashdot: Why Are Some Great Games Panned and Some Inferior Games Praised?

    Ask Slashdot: why does this guy think his opinion is the objective truth, so everyone else's must be wrong?

  • by Solandri ( 704621 ) on Friday December 30, 2016 @07:38PM (#53581977)
    Might've been that way since the 1970s too, but I was in elementary school then.
    • The game review magazines (now sites) need advance copies of the games to review them in a timely manner.
    • No advance copies = review comes out a week or more after the game is released = nobody bothers reading it = bankrupt reviewer.
    • To get an advance copy requires the game developer send you a copy.
    • If you pan a game in your review, the developer is less likely to send you an advance copy of their next game.
    • So magazine and website game reviews tend to be biased in favor of the games.
    • I suspect indie games are panned more partly because they do tend to be worse (low budget and all), but also because a lot of reviewers use them as an opportunity to vent their frustrations about not being allowed to say what they really think about a game.

    Since about 2000 I've relied mostly on the opinions of friends and people on forums, rather than reviews. So I don't buy games the day they're released (need a few weeks or months for online communities to build up a consensus), and I never pre-order anymore. I'll still read reviews for things like features in the game (though gameplay videos on YouTube have mostly replaced that). But I usually ignore the reviewer's opinion about a game, unless the opinion is negative.

    • by Desler ( 1608317 )

      Ars Technica has posted numerous pannings of games (one of the most recent being NonMans Sky) and yet still gets early review copies all the time. Seems your conspiracy theory is flawed.

    • I never pre-order anymore.

      I don't either, but that has to do more specifically with the influence of internet updates on the game industry than with anything else. They are more willing to ship a game that doesn't work now, and there is the risk that they will never really fix it.

    • by K10W ( 1705114 )

      Might've been that way since the 1970s too, but I was in elementary school then.

      • The game review magazines (now sites) need advance copies of the games to review them in a timely manner.
      • No advance copies = review comes out a week or more after the game is released = nobody bothers reading it = bankrupt reviewer.
      • To get an advance copy requires the game developer send you a copy.
      • If you pan a game in your review, the developer is less likely to send you an advance copy of their next game.
      • So magazine and website game reviews tend to be biased in favor of the games.
      • I suspect indie games are panned more partly because they do tend to be worse (low budget and all), but also because a lot of reviewers use them as an opportunity to vent their frustrations about not being allowed to say what they really think about a game.

      Since about 2000 I've relied mostly on the opinions of friends and people on forums, rather than reviews. So I don't buy games the day they're released (need a few weeks or months for online communities to build up a consensus), and I never pre-order anymore. I'll still read reviews for things like features in the game (though gameplay videos on YouTube have mostly replaced that). But I usually ignore the reviewer's opinion about a game, unless the opinion is negative.

      I find even the negative pro reviewers are not trustworthy these days, they don't "do" proper critique or wrap up truths in nice comments to keep devs happy by saying something seemingly positive but intend you read between the lines and figure out what they are really saying (not necessarily thinnly veiled the way it sounds but something that gets the truth across without directly rubbing peoples nose in it and invoking ire of the devs). They just seem to ignore the real negatives and put the obligatory "b

  • Maybe people don't like your crap game?

    God this is written like a PR piece posed as a question.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    It's rampant.

  • by cfalcon ( 779563 ) on Friday December 30, 2016 @07:51PM (#53582047)

    This is pretty much the posterboy article for "ethics in games journalism". But there seems to be little ethics, and more importantly, not really any games journalism.

    In the past, when there was sort of a thing as games journalism, it was because there were very few media outlets for discussing games. You had some magazines with nationwide distribution, and that was about it. Since many gamers took their queues from these magazines, the magazines had a motivation to provide a fair environment (their subscription fee or face value of magazine), games companies had plenty of motivation to give them early review copies (they would have their game covered before it came out, building hype), and they had every motivation to buy advertisements (perfectly targeted ad).

    Once everything went online, this broke. First, there's too damned many "game journalists" now. Because it's interesting and fun, there's no shortage of willing games journalists and bloggers. Since some people just come for the hype, a reviewer who just sucks every cock poked at him will do just fine in the marketplace, and someone who just generally is genuinely entertaining can do even better. This means that there's no reason for a game company to treat any given magazine, fanzine, blogger, or website even remotely fairly. Second, no one is paying subscriptions any more. Not only are some people willing to do it for effectively free ("brand building"!), plenty of places are entirely ad driven. That means that their readers are no longer part customer, part product- they are now entirely product. Third, the direct interface of the web has dramatically hurt the entire idea. Not only can I got directly to the developer's website and read their promo or ad copy to my heart's content, I can also find people on the very first day discussing it in forums.

    Games are a product, not a natural phenomena, not a political opinion, and sometimes not even art. How can you call covering a product "journalism"? It is quite fair to call it advertising, even if the writer wasn't directly paid to shill the product, even if he didn't get it early, or for free, etc.

    "Games journalism", if it existed, would look like Consumer Reports. It would be subscription only. The testing would be done blind. The reviews would make some attempt at being scientific, with space for editorialization (especially needed for the artistry that games often have, and dishwashers normally do not).

    But that doesn't exist, or I've never heard of it.

    So some shitty games get massive press because they pay for it, one way or another. These companies don't keep around their marketing departments for no fucking reason, after all. They don't drop dollars on ads for no reason either. A lot of this also makes an errant assumption regarding gamers and their reasons to game: while some are probably seeking The Best Experience, others just want to have fun with their friends, or with a broader group of acquaintances- for them, finding a popular game will be more rewarding than finding a masterful one.

    If you, personally, want to find a game to play, you have more tools than ever. You can look at the now decayed husk of the games journalists of the past, you can read the ad copy, you can find promo videos on youtube, you can confine your google search to reddit or voat or whatever, you can follow a youtube personality who has similar tastes to you, and some games even offer a trial period where you can determine whether you like it or not. It is frustrating if you try to fit the square peg of last century's comprehensive and mostly neutral point of view advance reviews into the round hole of a constantly updated online product that markets other products to you from inside itself, but it can be more reasonable if you widen the net you cast, which is vastly easier than it used to be.

    • by Desler ( 1608317 )

      This is pretty much the posterboy article for "ethics in games journalism". But there seems to be little ethics, and more importantly, not really any games journalism.

      Only in bizarro world. The game was simply buggy and had lots of server problems when launched. That's why it got bad reviews. There was no game review conspiracy.

    • This is pretty much the posterboy article for "ethics in games journalism".

      Yes but not in the way you suspect. AAA titles released with a few minor issues that are quickly fixed get good reviews.
      Game that some random on the internet thinks is awesome but in reality had major major bugs, a shit network code, and generally some fatal issues that took a long time to only partially fix got bad reviews.

      Ethics, okay everything as expected.

    • This is pretty much the posterboy article for "ethics in games journalism". But there seems to be little ethics, and more importantly, not really any games journalism.

      Reviewers don't like incredibly buggy game = bad ethics.

      what.

    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

      This is pretty much the posterboy article for "ethics in games journalism".

      No, the reviews were fair. When it came out the game sucked. It look a long time for a community to build up, mod it, get the worst problems patched, and turn it into something fun.

      Disagreeing with you != corruption.

  • The video game industry has long been most concerned with the superficial aspects of a game: primarily graphics and sound, and more recently online/MM aspects. These are the simplistic aspects that are easy to quantify and turn into sales drivers. The actual game play experience, which is more than just its appearance, is always somehow relegated to secondary importance because many elements are subjective. Classic cases of style over substance, and form over function.

  • Maybe Soldner sucks less now, with twelve years of fan patches, but when it came out it was utter ass.

    If you could keep it from crashing, and then if you could manage to get it to see the internet, when you found a server and connected then the server would crash.

    I wouldn't call it ENTIRELY unplayable, but close to it.

    And that umlaut didn't help either.

  • Because taste is subjective, you dumb fuck.
  • Remember when the Wii came out? It had inferior graphics, relying on a generation-old graphics processor. But people absolutely loved it. They didn't care about the cartoon-quality graphics. It was simply fun to play.

    I think a lot of game enthusiasts get so caught up in technical accuracy that they forget about playability and fun.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Wii motion sensing was a fun-looking gimmick that was easily understandable for people who didn't play games.

      Wiis all went to the back of the closet after six months. The Wii and then the Kinect taught us that cool fun technology doesn't necessarily work for games as well as a gamepad.

      Anyway, the Wii was the exact same games as the Gamecube and the Wii Tablet, both of which bombed.

    • I think a lot of game enthusiasts get so caught up in technical accuracy that they forget about playability and fun.

      Kind of like those fantasy books that start with a 200 page treatise of the economic system of the world and the precise mechanisms of magic. So. Dull.

  • ...that once a game is released, it's on the short track to OLD NEWS.

    Sure, some MMOs remain in the news, but this is more like the exception that proves the rule.

    Today, with the (stupid) pre-Alpha, open Beta, soft-launch crap, the marketing engines are desperately front-loading their coverage. NOBODY promotes games that are out and released, there's little milk available in that cow (at least according to conventional wisdom).

    If a game takes 6 months of patches for it to become "not suck" then it's too lat

    • Sorry, I had to add this: I've watched the games promotional video and ...it looks pretty bad.

      It would have been great when it came out, and I sympathize with the submitter's not-so-subtle effort to pimp their "fave game", but today? No, bare-naked hills, empty minimal-polygon buildings and clumsy models are so 2007....it may be great gameplay, but so was Atari Tank Battle: but nobody's playing that anymore either.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      If a game takes 6 months of patches for it to become "not suck" then it's too late, the only ones still giving it a go are the die-hards that will not stop beating a dead horse anyway.

      We've seen this with gigantic AAA games this year. For example --
      Deus Ex: Mankind Divided would have had much better review scores and sold many more copies if it was released with the game patches and performance it has today. Even though the performance has been patched and fixed, the review scores from the unfixed version are permanent. There are many more examples with the same outcome.

      There is only a single company that knows this as fact and lives by it, and that is Nintendo with the motto "A late

  • One word answer is in the subject line.
  • You'll have to deal with a clunky interface and menu, silly single-player missions, brain-dead A.I., bizarre vehicle physics, horrible net code, dull graphics and sound, and more bugs than a Georgia swamp in June

    This and many of the other reviews make it sound like at the time it was released it was a buggy mess. Reviewers said that the single player was worthless (you don't say), and that the multiplayer net code was so bad that players and vehicles would warp all the time. Maybe this has improved with p

  • Well not I've triggered your attention I hate to say it but this kind of really is exactly what Gamer Gate was, at least, supposed to be about. There really do seem to be real inconstancy between the over all quality of the players gaming experience compared to what people expect when they read first reviews of the latest games. And we can only dodge that fact for so long. It's a few years past that idiotic pissing patch that GG turned into and the situation just hasn't really gotten any better.

    And in th

    • I hate to say it but this kind of really is exactly what Gamer Gate was, at least, supposed to be about.

      So what you're telling me is that under all the sexism and trolling that what GamerGate was really about was objecting to reviewers giving low ratings to a game that took years of patches to become not incredibly buggy.

      Dude, you're not selling it very well.

  • Advertising, word of mouth, what your clan decides on

    On the subject of word of mouth this game is a great example, you had me sold. I really
    enjoy BF3, my shooting is really bad yet my points come from taking flags, if being sold
    as being better than BF3 I went looking.

    (Sorry about this post it wasn't meant to turn out this way).

    My site for gaming info is Gamesfaq.com, Checking out Soldner for it's enjoyment level
    (forums) and for it's platform (Linux, oh pls, oh pls).

    You built it up to the point I was going t

  • by Anonymous Coward

    I participated in the beta of this game.
    80.000 square kilometers of map terrain (playable maps would be taken from this terrain and edited for game use (objects and objectives would be added to limited part of the terrain, everything out of the playingfield was without details/objects/objectives)
    Every branch of the militairy was availlable (Army, Navy, Airforce) From motorbikes to jetski's, armoured transports (amphibious even) and battle tanks, helicopters and jets. Even a selection of Anti-Air weapons etc

  • As others have said, it's partly because of the money involved. AAA games get better reviews.

    But I also think a large part of it is just that most reviewers have shit taste and don't appreciate good games.
    This might be due to being brainwashed by the games they usually play, or that their socio-economic background does not enable them to understand more sophisticated works.

  • Most reviewers has played the game for a couple of hours. They have not really learned to play the game and get good at it. They do not know, if its has a lasting playability, or if its contains many hidden bugs thats not visible from just trying out the game. The less they play the game, the faster they can send out a review to their subscribers. Cause in this world, it's all about being first to get the views.

    So most reviews is about the first few parts of the game. The initial visual effects and how you

  • And a reliable marketing budget that allows the dev to "convince" the reviewers to play through the bugs.
  • but better looking -- Battlefield, COD, Medal Of Honor, CounterStrike war games got all the critical praise

    There was a period shortly after the release of Counter-Strike: Source when you could consider it "better looking" than the competition. That period lasted about a year. Every other version of CS has been behind the times in graphics because they were released so long after the original engine was written.

    And besides, the series features gameplay on a much smaller, tighter, more tactical scale than the other four games he is comparing it to.

  • I had Soldner. It did, in fact, suck. It sucked hard.
  • by AHuxley ( 892839 ) on Saturday December 31, 2016 @10:54PM (#53586763) Homepage Journal
    It might cost a few thousand US$ or much more but for that sites play the game and include your own art work as supplied.
    Its all in who that first trusted email or link for the game press.
    Step 1. Make a good game with graphics, sound, art, plot.
    Step 2. Write you life story, games concept, issues the developers faced and worked out, the completed result.
    Step 3. Hire a consultant, team or company to create you press release for review sites to use.
    The length and structure of the paragraphs will read well, the many images are ready, videos will be ready for a web site, magazine, blog. Contact details for a radio interview or other emerging or other media.
    Color separation, dpi, resolution, web ready, video, developer photos and their stories. Does it still matter? Your press pack has it all ready for publication. Its all ready for the press, blogs, internet.
    All contact information for later interviews will be correct and cover everything from phone, fax, social media, email.
    Old media is new again, social media is 24/7. Bloggers and online reviewers may have huge audiences. Even political, historical or social aspects can get coverage from talk back radio or very different blogs or sites. Be ready and open to respond to anyone and everyone wanting an interview at any time.
    Make sure such emails, calls and other contact information is been tracked and can be respond to 24/7 after the release. Don't expect the media to fit in with your time zone. Different media in different time zones have to be considered.
    All images, art will have the correct legal wording to allow for instant publication.
    Step 4. Read your review reworded with play testing and see your included great art over a lot of trusted review sites.
    Some effort is needed to be print or web ready. Be ready to talk, chat or for a more formal interview.
    Been interview ready to fit in with any time and different formats (voice only, video) also helps.
    Translation services with some local aspect to the game can help spread packaged coverage globally.
  • Marketing and Exposure.

    It's not about how games are great or inferior being praised or not, it is about marketing and exposure.

    Only the top 10% of the bell curve of players try and look for better or greater games themselves, the other 40% of the bell curves do it only with advertisement, recommendation and other forms of marketing / Exposure. The last 50% of the bell curves do it after the marketing trend effect.

    It is not directly related to the question, but you are also now one of the top 10% who has the

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