I play videogames, that is one of my much loved hobbies. I have a few particular genres that I like but in general, if it’s a well crafted game then I’ll put at least some time into it just to enjoy the systems and care that went into piecing it all together. I enjoy gaming so much that I decided to start learning how to make them, so that I had a better understanding of what was going on under the hood while I played, so that I could appreciate games even more.
My Steam Library has just about 200 games now, most of which I have actually played (I don’t just buy humble bundles and sit on things – I choose the games that I play pretty individually) and of course I grew up gaming, so there are a few hundred titles from all the classic consoles that won’t ever be in any library that I own – but I could take quite a nostalgia trip with whoever wanted to.
It stands to reason that if all of that is true, I probably read a few reviews here and there. I definitely do – I actually read a lot of reviews, and comments, and watch review videos, and I’ve left a couple of my own. I leave Google reviews A LOT, and Amazon reviews a pretty solid amount as well. I’ve definitely noticed that reviews could be better – I’d like to read a sort of “pro” level review, or at least a thought out one, for each thing I’m considering. Reviews are hard because you’re not sure what all was considered during the review as you read a short one that says something like “This was great!” – what expectations did that person have? I don’t know, and maybe they’re different than mine. So, I’d like to know.
This is a page dedicated to gathering the sections necessary for a good game review, setting up a framework for the scoring system, and then a few helpful bullet points on how to communicate each section usefully for a broad audience.
You should put yourself in there somewhere too
Inevitably as a person who wants a process to do things better and faster, everything seems to become a little robotic. But thats no good, you want to understand both as a reviewer and as a person reading the review, who the human is behind the writing. So, there should probably be a little space at the top of any review for how you genuinely feel about the experience that you’re reviewing; in this case, we’re talking about videogames, but that holds true for whatever else you might be talking about as well. So, put a little bit of yourself in there to help the reader sort of “align the looking glass”, if you will.
Basic Game Info:
Best Control Style:
- Mouse and Keyboard
Rating For Real
Game Type For Real
- JRPG (Turn Based)
- ARPG (Real time action)
- TRPG (Tactics)
Best comparison games?
How long you should expect to be playing this game?
- As a general playthrough:
- As a side-quester:
- As a completionist:
The Actual Grade Points
Graphics Rated In Their Own Medium
Gameplay for what it intends
- Counter System?
The Grading Scale
VideoGameDunkey recently released a video about why a lot of game review websites are bad. His primary points were that:
1. The people reviewing the games don’t actually finish playing those games because they have deadlines for content
2. Their grading scales didn’t make any sense because everything gets a technically above average rating
3. Large sites have a lot of writers, so you never know who is reviewing the game, and you don’t know how that person responds to certain games.
“Every review you do should be like an extension of the last until your audience understands what kind of games you respond to.” – videogamedunkey
Here’s the link to that video – I think Dunkey is fantastic. (Thanks Shawn)
His points are really well taken and, I think, incredibly important. So, I think it’s important to allow ourselves to remember that grading scales are important and what goes into those end-grades is incredibly important. I think that each primary bullet that is built out should have it’s own rating. I prefer a 1-10 scale, because I don’t think 1-5 is nuanced enough and that 3.5 is a stupid score because that feels low but it’s really a 7 out of 10 so decimals are inherantly emotionally dishonest. /rant
So a scale of 1-10 AND – figure out what 1 is on the scale and give a represenation of that. Same goes for 10. I want to know what you’re saying is a 1 or 10. I may disagree. This entire thing IS subjective, you know.
- Put something to do here?
- Added this page and wrote some content