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The Official Siliconera Review Guide

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Hi, everyone! Siliconera is adding a new type of article. Every once in a while, for major releases relevant to the site, we’ll be conducting scored reviews.

So, what does this mean?

How often will we see Siliconera reviews?

Siliconera will remain 90-95% news, with about one feature each day. That feature could be an interview, a playtest or a review.

Reviews will not appear at the same frequency as interviews or playtests. There will never be more than one review per week.

A game could get a review, then also get more focused playtests in the form of guides or closer looks at more specific parts of a game. However, a playtested game might not get reviews.

How will Siliconera get review copies?

Review copies, unless noted, are provided by the game’s publisher or developer. However, there will be no undue influence on reviews. In addition, we will not conduct any playtests or reviews on games for which there is a conflict of interest.

At the end of every review, we will also fully disclose whether we received a review copy.

What will Siliconera’s review scale look like?

Siliconera will have a ten-point review scale with no halves or decimal points.

  1. A score of 1 means that a game is completely broken, to the point that it is unplayable.
  2. A score of 2 means that a game may work and not be broken, but there are points where it is irredeemable and not worth playing.
  3. A score of 3 means that a game probably has one interesting aspect. Maybe the soundtrack has some real bangers. There could be one character with an interesting arc.
  4. A score of 4 means we are looking at a game that, if the price is cheap enough, could be worth it. It probably isn’t great. It is very likely tedious. There could be an okay story or maybe there’s an interesting skill tree system. It is worth acknowledging, but maybe not owning.
  5. A score of 5 means we’re looking at an average game. It won’t be earth-shattering, but it works and can sometimes be fun. Especially if you like its genre or someone involved with its development.
  6. A score of 6 means that the game might be really appealing to someone who likes that developer, genre, composer or artist. But it won’t be perfect, and people who don’t have some sort of connection going in might not be feeling it.
  7. A score of 7 is considered good. It might not be on entirely solid footing, but it’s a game that will be of interest to fans of the genre and maybe have something that catches the eye of people interested in similar genres.
  8. A score of 8 means we absolutely recommend it. Even if you don’t like the genre, you might really like it! Things really come together, and there’s not just one element that’s special. The whole game is great.
  9. A score of 9 is a fantastic game. If you own the system it is on, you should own the game. It might even do something special for the genre as a whole. If you get it, even if you normally don’t like that kind of game, you will very likely have a good time.
  10. A score of 10 is a game everyone should play. If you don’t have a system it is on, you should consider getting that system. It does something important and notable for the genre. It might need a patch or two, as games don’t need to be totally perfect to achieve this core, but it is otherwise remarkable.

What happens if a major patch or update is released that significantly changes a game?

Should there be a major change, Siliconera will have a follow-up playtest going over the alterations. If it is enough to merit a review score change, we will add a paragraph to the review explaining the updates, assign a new score and offer a link to the playtest update going over the changes.

Siliconera Staff
Sometimes we'll publish a story as a group. You'll find collaborative stories and some housekeeping announcements under this mysterious camel.