Jimquisition: Metacritic Isn't the Problem

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Tough I certainly agree, was this worth an entire episode? First you made your point, then you made your point, then you boosted your ego a little (wich I liked) and then you made your point again.

deleted

Best video yet in the Jimquisition.
Tip of the hat, sir.

Good stuff, Jim. Been a fan of your work on Dtoid for a while, so I'm personally glad to see your stuff here.

The concern with review scores in this industry, at least in the fanbases, is just absurd. In any unfortunate time that I've ventured into the Gamespot forums, I always seem to spot a few threads like "loolz [game title, likely misspelled] only got 8.5 it suczxx heaps!! HUGE FAEL" or what have you. In music publications giving five star ratings, a four star album is considered great, and a three star album is usually still worth checking out. But if a game gets an 8 or a 6, it's apparently a failure to a lot of people.

I like your show, so Escapist please keep this one on.

scores aren't all yow know... I thinck video game scores should go f*** right off... you can't just lock at a game that hase 5 stars out of 5 and say i will licke this game! it could be a tipe of game you sempley don't licke... so I say just pay atention to what the rest of the review is sayng and ignore the score!

Roocifer:
Telegram from Capt. E. Blackadder.

Dear Mr Chaplain. Stop. Have discovered only person in the world less funny than you. Stop. Name Jimquisition. Stop. Oh and one more thing, please please please. Stop.

My Lord, you made my day Sir, made my day!

When I started watching Jimquisition, I thought it was a cheap attempt at provocation. Didn't provoke me, although it seems quite effective to annoy some people in this site. I was just "bleh". But I saw the potential, I'm glad I continued watching, I have quite enjoyed this last episodes, you make good points, not like the absurd "sexualize everything" in the second episode.

Also, I love your megalomania. I thank God for you.

Would be awesome if the video didn't keep crashing on me :c

Again his demeanour is a little less than stellar but he makes a good point.

I'll be honest, this was funny. You still irritate the hell out of me at time but when you do these more "serious ones" I can't help but agree with you. And even if I didn't you at least get you're point across quite well in recent episodes.

My problem with metacritic it is not the low reviews, it's the low reviews when compared to the ones with high reviews, check GTA IV, it has 98% that has to be a joke.

""""Leigh Alexander recently wrote a columm asking me to remove my reviews from Metacritic. Since I'm well know for a ratter divisive writing style, and my reviews don't always march in line with common thinking""""

I hate Jim for his lack of dualism. His own (usually distorted) perspetive is king. And the rest is considered non existent. I'm sure what Leigh Alexander critiqued in her column is NOT his "divisive writing style" and his tendendence to "go against common thinking". Way to look the hero, Jim. Serioulsy, that's just my opinion (probably not just mine), but this is ridiculous.

Juuel:
I love Jimquisition's arrogant style, people seem to be taking him too seriously. I don't get all the hate he's getting.

You sir, speak the truth.

I love Jim Sterling's style, and It amuses me when people swallow his flame-bait hook, line and sinker. All that can really be said is "U mad?!".

I agree with the sentiment in the review. Metacritic is just hosting reviews, not writing them. It would provide a more accurate reflection of a game's quality if more people took the time to review it properly. And if people didn't blatantly exploit the aggregate system. Damnit.

Although, as some people have pointed out, Metacritic does use a different system. I don't know enough about how that works to really comment on it.

NKnight:
""""Leigh Alexander recently wrote a columm asking me to remove my reviews from Metacritic. Since I'm well know for a ratter divisive writing style, and my reviews don't always march in line with common thinking""""

I hate Jim for his lack of dualism. His own (usually distorted) perspetive is king. And the rest is considered non existent. I'm sure what Leigh Alexander critiqued in her column is NOT his "divisive writing style" and his tendendence to "go against common thinking". Way to look the hero, Jim. Serioulsy, that's just my opinion (probably not just mine), but this is ridiculous.

Actually it basically was.

http://sexyvideogameland.blogspot.com/

Lack of dualism? You just assumed Jim was wrong because you don't like him without even reading the blog in question.

I'm with Jim in this one.

I still find Jim's delivery irritating but at least he made a point this time. It really is a shame he did not elaborate on it quite enough though. The point that Metacritic on it's own is mostly harmless is an obvious one. Equally obvious is the point that how game publishers are using it is the problem, not the site itself.

What would have been far better is to go into some detail about what industry mechanics there are different between movies music and games that allow the former to largely ignore these review aggregates and the latter to to look at them as if their continued existence hinged on treating them like the undiluted word of God. I don't have an answer to this question and obviously Jim doesn't either or he would not have made a troll video expounding on the obvious and instead would have provided some actual honest to God new insight.

Without truly understanding what is making the publishers behave in this way, we as the consumers have very little chance of influencing future games through our wallets. That's what we need a video on. Not this condescending trolling piece I saw instead.

your first 2 episodes i dodnt much care for. however. since 'defending COD' i now enjoy this series and look foward to my weekly dosage of the jimquisition. perhaps you should do a show about parents decrying violent games as damageing to the youth, whilst adamantly ignoreing th fact that the little shits cant even BUY the game.

also. can you people [you know who you are[ PLEASE stop bitching about the show? escapist isnt going to pull the plug on jim anytime soon, and the rest of us enjoy his shows. your sad little whinings only serve to amuse us who enjoy the show. go watch something else if oyu dont like the jimquisition.

as for metacritic.. meh. i only put very littl stock into a written review, because all reviews are subjective. i prefere video reviews or walkthroughs to tell me if i'll like a game or not.

Thammuz:

Roocifer:
Telegram from Capt. E. Blackadder.

Dear Mr Chaplain. Stop. Have discovered only person in the world less funny than you. Stop. Name Jimquisition. Stop. Oh and one more thing, please please please. Stop.

For once, just once, i would love to see somebody who actually takes the time to rebut to some of the points instead of just focusing on the delivery as if that was important.

Because that's not the only problem you have, I hope.

Because if the case is that you just don't like his persona, I assure you, WE GOT IT. It's been nine videos (eight if you don't count the E3 video), he clearly isn't going to change it and the escapist clearly wants to keep him, so kindly shut your traps and start considering, i don't know, WATCHING SOMETHING ELSE. Something you like, preferrably, to spare another audience your FUCKING WHINING.

Nobody is going to stop liking him because you say so and the site isn't going to spiral down into obscurity because of one person you don't like. Especially considering that that one person is competent enough to be a reviews editor, which makes his opinion worth listening to, if anything to get an idea of what someone who works in that particular field might think about various issues.

And besides, it baffles me that a site that has Yahtzee weekly destroying pretty much every game he comes across, would have such a fucking sensitive fanbase. It's not a seniority thing because Jim has been doing this for a while too, and it's not the fact that Yahtzee's opinion is clearer because lots of people have trouble understanding whether he likes a game or not, so what's the fucking deal here? Why are two perfectly valid opinions presented in an unhortodox fashion being treated so differently?

Ever consider that he may have a point but still be an unbearable bore?

That's why people tune in, for his insight but they have to suffer him recycling the same overwrought "jokes" over and over again.

He's like that drunk uncle at christmas who every half an hour tells the same inappropriate joke to the same group of people. It was somewhat amusing the first time but definitely not after that. We wonder if he is thick and forgot the joke h already told, or he is just arrogant enough to think we are all too thick to remember he told the same joke 30 minutes ago.

Yahtzee's self-depreciating humour is charming and kinetic. Jim's "self-depreciation" comes across as disingenuous and padding. You really can't compare the two as they are far too different as while Yahtzee is irreverent Jim is confrontational. Where Jim directly hurls abusive insults at the audience who dare not "get" his "joke", Yahtzee makes a passive insinuating observation. He is just a massive Troll, what the hell is it with his quasai-fascist theme? It's not a one off thing, his only reference to it is to insult anyone who takes it seriously under tha apparent "It' just a joke, shut up Idiot". I don't see what joke or satirical point he is making, Charlie Chaplin's "Great Dictator" satire this is not.

He really is just using it the same way the fascists did, by intimidation and confrontation. I mean when Eric Cartman does this he is made the buttmonkey and suffers for his nasty ways, but Jim in his own little world seem to want to 'eat his cake and still have it afterwards'. He wants the fun of acting like a fascist dick then at the same time "Shutup, it's all just a joke" a joke only he seems to find funny.

My opinion: Jim Sterling should stay behind camera, behind the scenes as an editor. His attitude is sure to make life hell for the staff but he's likely to inject some liveliness into things. He's like J Jonah Jameson, he's a harsh motivator but not someone the audience would actually like to hear directly from except to see ridiculed.

The only thing that bothers me about Jim is his... well... being...

If this was an intolerably smug article I'd be all over it, but by being an intolerably smug video it just bothers me so much more.

However there is always fun to be had. Half the enjoyment of these videos involves looking through the comments and seeing how many people just don't fucking get it after all this time...

Jim want's everyone to bitch and moan about him. It's what he's aiming for. You're just making him win...

Well why are games given a percentage score anyway? Most films have a 4-5 star rating, or (2)thumb-up/down system and music has as far as I know never had any numerical scoring.

I think the critics predisposition to numerical scoring is related to technology, there more measurable technology there is the more tempting it is to try to quantify it.

In games this is especially easy as all the elements can be viewed separately and can vary hugely. How where the graphics, the sound, the plot. But is it really right that graphics and story be treated separately? Surely they should work together as one for a great comprehensive experience. It is accepted in cinema that the story IS the sum of the writing and cinematography and all the other elements.

So many review sites do this "Sub-aggregate" scoring, using a sum of categories to give a final game score. Gametrailers.com does this with Story-design-gameplay-presentation so goes Famitsu. This can lead to publishers and PR people getting into such fights as think about it.

They made an INVESTMENT in getting a game the best graphics. They hire the best writers. They build on well established and loved gameplay. They did every element right at huge expense they reasonably feel entitled to a high score by their own review criteria.

The problem is the sub-categories are a sham. What really matters to the critics is the intangible, the way all the elements fit together and in ways they never thought of nor could have written categories for. You can spend $20 million making a game with superb graphics with top quality writing and voice work but what REALLY matters when it comes time to post is all the little things. Like controls, pacing, challenge and novelty, also the integration and relevance of the story to the gameplay rather than jsut the story as a separate movie.

Famitsu's continued focus on "Story as separate category" I think has held a lot of Japanese games back that value that publication's opinion. In MGS4 there is a huge gulf between the game and the plot as they are long movie segments that completely separate from gameplay with no meaningful sense of interaction. Compare and contrast with Half Life that keeps you in perspective and makes the story much more involving even if technically far more simplistic.

Custard_Angel:
The only thing that bothers me about Jim is his... well... being...

If this was an intolerably smug article I'd be all over it, but by being an intolerably smug video it just bothers me so much more.

However there is always fun to be had. Half the enjoyment of these videos involves looking through the comments and seeing how many people just don't fucking get it after all this time...

Jim want's everyone to bitch and moan about him. It's what he's aiming for. You're just making him win...

So he's a Troll?

Because that is what The Escapist needs.

Actually, think of all the web-traffic looking at ads, that's exactly what The Escapist needs but unlike Extra Credits or Zero Punctuation is a gimmick that won't last for long.

Jimbo! What gives?? No tie and proper shirt?? I AM DISAPPOINT!

It's true that the publisher's and industry are much at fault here for MetaCritic's power over game sales and the like, but MetaCritic's scoring method has seen some skeptism from me. I was watching a reviewer talk about MetaCritic, and their biggest complaint was that ina score out of 5, a 3 was around 50/100. They wanted MetaCritic to know that a 3 actually meant a score of about 75, an average game. That's pretty much why I don't use it much, but it's true that it's not as bad as some make it out to be.

Jim, keep up the good work. I don't get how anyone can hate you. You are provoking reactions, but in a good way, you keep your viewers in a state of open mindedness, or at least me. Also you use logic, that's always nice.

Apparently, Jim Steriling is trying to be the official devil's advocate of The Escapist, and I, for one, support him.

Nicely done jim. You're getting better with the style, but the internet will be the internet so.... flamers wil always flame.
Good point though, don't blame metacritic for the idiots who use it.

I do have a problem with metacritic though! If it took reviews from only business related sites that would be fine, but because it can take any fools reviews it makes it an invalid test.

p.s. I do not like this man.

Even his theme tune puts my back up, i want him to go far, far away.

Thank god for him. Too bad he didn't mention the hypocrisy of most reviews, you knwo, the ones that suppose that anything below 7 is shit. Which is retarded.
And lead to many cases when game, which deserves 3 or 6 gets 7.

Juuel:
I love Jimquisition's arrogant style, people seem to be taking him too seriously. I don't get all the hate he's getting.

Search Jim out on Youtube, he's a fucking asshole.

If the topic this week seeks to bring anything to light, it's that I seriously use metacritic to check the watermark, and get the fuck out. I don't read reviews unless it's straight from the sites I frequent, who's content I enjoy (ala Joystiq, GiantBomb, The Escapist)

The reality is, is that if you are going to dictate your own buying/playing policy with the reviews of others, then you should try to take in information from people you deem to have similar interests as yourself. Metacritic "seems" to offer nothing more than a general consensus, laid out by those allowed to submit their opinions. I wonder if there is a categorical shift in personality in people that review films on RT versus those that review games on MC.

As scattered as these thoughts are, the one thing that remains clear is I've ALWAYS found RT to be more accurate of my like/dislike barometer, than MC ever was.

EDIT: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bBdXq13sN1I

A hapless clown surrounded by guffawing minions...

EDIT 2: Folding the rubber cocks back into your videos I see Jim.

Once again, nicely done. Whatever people say about him, he makes good points.
Thank god for Jim.

I enjoyed this one although it got a bit blathery towards the middle. He's right a review site isn't evil in itself. It's just how people use and interepret the reviews. The biggest irony is that metacritic reviews are from anyone so surely we should be looking to ourselves and our own action an inaction to have an effect on the industry. Personally I'm not sure metacritic is a good idea as it can be abused but in most cases as in Dragon Age 2 this is pretty obvious (although DA2 did suck badly)

I found it a little strange that the woman wanted Jim to remove his reviews from the site? Surely one persons view isn't going to disrupt the things badly and even then he's got a right to his own opinion surely?

I also found the images and vids used in this one to be a little distracting from the discourse but at least its more upmarket than the previous attempts.

As for those who are against him, I'm not his biggest fan but I think it's good that he is attempting to change his tone and presentation a little for The Escapist. He's obviously capable of intelligent thought behind that arrogant exterior.

Pr0:
Thanks for the warning, I'll keep in mind that only site contributors are allowed to insult people from now on! I shall move back to my life of being a sad little cretin.

Good, make it easier for us to enjoy these great videos in peace

Still Life:

Zom-B:
He's essentially right. And furthermore, you don't hear anyone complaining about how RottenTomatoes.com is ruining the movie industry.

As usual, a whiny minority seeks to change/ruin something for everyone else because they got their knickers in a twist of a perceived slighting.

Minority groups can be a good thing and can provide unique perspectives on matters. I would argue that the industry need super-hardcore fans, because quite often they're in tune with the essence of a game/series and can provide great feedback to developers. Bioware Social is a great example of a hardcore fanbase which contributes to the development process of Bioware games in a positive way. I frequently loiter around the Mass Effect forums and the developers have taken ques from community requests.

I feel that you've kinda missed the point, as it's not so much those OCD gamers who moan over score inconsistencies, but that it is ultimately the industry itself which has created a phenomena that works against the production of more innovative and risk-taking games. Sure, there's a small and vocal minority of people out there -- just like there is here on the Escapist -- who take issue with every detail in reviews and at the end of the day: it's their burden.

When will people learn that a 60, or a 70 does not necessarily equate to a bad game?

Love your videos, Jim! Make 'em angry :)

First of all, I'd like to point out that there's a difference between a "whiny minority" and a "minority group". Perhaps it wasn't your intention to equate the people who I was referring to- the whiny people who think Metacritic is bad or ruining something- to a minority group along ethnic or religious lines, for example.

I think you sort of missed the point. It's not about OCD gamers moaning over score inconsistencies. It's about a vocal minority who think a tool that can be abused by it's user base is necessarily a bad thing. And in contrasting it to a website like RottenTomatoes, it shows that it really is just a vocal minority who don't understand what an aggregate tool is and how it's both used and abused.

The public user base certainly abuses Metacritic. Regardless of whether or not a "professional" review is viewed as genuine, there's enough variety on a site like Metacritic to generally ensure that critic reviews are a good general indicator of a game's quality. It should not be the be all, end all tool that people make decisions on.

I agree that the video game industry has created a phenomena that is harming some developers, but putting too much stock in Metacritic scores. Not only is it foolish of the industry, but it's short sighted as well. Taking a handful of reviews, a tiny percentage of people that have played/reviewed a given game, and making business decisions is massively foolish. The industry has shot itself in the foot by listening to a vocal group of players/reveiwers, which is why we get more sequels and less new IPs. They've decided based on the most vocal of gamers to give all gamers the same products.

Metacritic is not the problem. Abuse of the system and an industry frightened of failure is the problem.

Soups on. Prick.

Good times.
I've never used Metacritic or know anyone who does.

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