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What's Wrong with Metacritic?

Posted on Monday, October 11 @ 21:49:29 PST by
Aggregator sites are popular with both consumers and corporations. They aren't popular with this reviewer.

I'll admit, I lean on Metacritic and Game Rankings from time to time. First, I like to read reviews. I think they can contain a ton of interesting insight to games and how we play them. Also, I'm an English major so criticism is just plain fun to me. But ever since I started reviewing here, I've noticed some things that are completely wrong with review scores.

To be clear, we take reviews pretty seriously *smirk* here at Game Revolution, and I think letter grades are a great way to measure games in terms of scores. They're abstract enough to allow some wiggle room, they reflect the fact that everyone considers games under a 7 to be crap (through the use of "F"), and they can't be argued over as obviously as numerical scores.

This is why I hate it when Metacritic takes my C-grade of Castlevania: Harmony of Despair and calls it a 42. Or when I'm responsible for Backbreaker's lowest score, 33, despite having given the game a D+. Those numerical scores just aren't right. Do the reviews feel like that number? Do the reviews back up that number? No. They back up my letter grade, and only that letter grade.

I also don't like my review scores being used to determine the financial well-being of game developers. But that's a completely different story.

The bottom line is: Read the fucking article everybody.

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