This faux motivational poster is tongue in cheek, but it has a point. How valid are review scores? It’s obvious that they’re not timeless and you can’t even compare a score from one magazine against another since they rate games on a different scale. It’s sort of questionable if review scores actually “do” anything other than fuel debates about what game is better. Low scores don’t stop games like 50 Cent’s Bulletproof from flying off store shelves and they don’t seem to get people to rush out and purchase Okami or Rez. Even when they do serve their purpose as “evidence” of why game X is great and why game Y is horrible they’re just numbers. Who cares if a game has two stars if you enjoy it. Instead of criticizing every minute detail about anti-alising I like to tell you how a game plays and let you the reader make up your mind. You’re smart enough to know what you like and what you don’t without me forcing my opinion on you right?
At last week’s “What makes a next-gen game” panel editors from Official Xbox Magazine, Play, and PSM discussed the relevance of review scores. It seems like they came to the consensus that readers want review scores and it is a necessary evil to summarize a game by a single digit or in most cases a double digit score. What do you think? Do you like review scores? Would you like to see them back on Siliconera? Or do you like hearing about gameplay and the experience of a game more?