Thursday, May 1, 2008

Doubleyou Teeeee Ef.

Now, I enjoy playing video games. However, what I don't like is the industrial advertising complex that has arisen. Sites like IGN, Gamespy, and others, that feel like they can review ,advertise, and market video games in the same way as people review, advertise, and market a static medium like film and music. I'm going to tell you right now, you can't. A static medium is fundamentally different from an interactive one, especially when you get into the blockbuster level games like GTA IV.

I don't like the way that GTA IV was marketed. The reviews ooze preferential treatment and gloss over flaws so they can give the game a perfect score for the sake of having the exclusive. GTA IV has a 100 on metacritic? Nothing's that perfect. Think of the best movie you've seen in recent years. Pan's Labyrinth? 98. Tarantino's Opus, Pulp Fiction? 94. The Oscar Juggernaut that was Return of the King? 94. Schindler's List? 93. Think about the best games of the past 3 years. Super Mario Galaxy got a 97. The Ayn Rand Epic, Bioshock? 96. Call of Duty 4? 94. Apparently GTA IV is better than any of them. But when you consider that it has noticeable flaws to a casual gamer like me, I start to question what might have gone on in the review session. Sometimes it's even counter intuitively obvious, like in the GamesRadar Review, where they note that the game's not flawless, and then proceed to give it a flawless score of 100/100. Excuse me?

Questionable practices aside, what infuriates me even more is the assumptions that some sites make about the people who come to them hoping for information. This is what put the what the fuck in this post. As in, Is this what the fuck these guys think their constituency is solely interested in? I'm done with IGN, and it's sister site Gamespy. It's not that they showed this stuff, as EA says every time I boot up Madden, it's in the game. But it's not the ONLY thing in the game, and you couldn't tell that by watching that video. It's only gonna cause more problems down the road, more so than the game itself would make.

Rant aside, I think GTA IV is a good game, and if you like any of the previous installments in the series, you'll love this one.

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