Zero Punctuation: Tomb Raider: Underworld

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Baby Tea:

THANK you Pedro. I wanted to jump all over this comment, but I knew I couldn't do it positively (ESPECIALLY with that ridiculous 'tl;dr' comment). Some new people just don't get it. But you, sir Pedro (Yeah, I totally knighted you), are the calming voice of...calm.

I'm only quoting this to tell you your avatar is awesome.

lol. i knew too he woul'nd like it. only because it has the title tomb raider, does not mean it's bad right away. it mide be same in a way but there are far more worser games out there then tomb raider.

So what happened to the custom music at the beginning and the end of the clips? Has that been yanked or what? (copyright issues?).

Akalabeth:
So what happened to the custom music at the beginning and the end of the clips? Has that been yanked or what? (copyright issues?).

it's not easy to find always the right music. i was really wondering how long he can pull this through. so i was not surprised to hear only one music. to be honest, i don't care.

@Baby Tea:

It's sad that you didn't *get* my post either.

My point was that this show is made by Yahtzee, and no one else, and it's his job to make us laugh and write a good review. How is it fair for us to bash him when he can't do that? What right to we have to expect him to make us laugh? None at all, and that was my point. That, and that NC is pathetic human being for premaking that diatribe.

Anyway, why do you defend him so? If you apparently don't like ZP anymore then get off this site and stop trying to prove you're right to everyone. Oh wait, this is the internet, nevermind, let's argue for eternity then.

Vlane:
Pretty good review to be honest but I still don't understand the "Lara == Bong" comparison.

I didn't get that either, maybe she's got a big arse. I never played them, I bought one of the games, once... and it crashed too much to play.

got to admit its the funniest one in a while

Thirdman:

Vlane:
Pretty good review to be honest but I still don't understand the "Lara == Bong" comparison.

I didn't get that either, maybe she's got a big arse. I never played them, I bought one of the games, once... and it crashed too much to play.

Its more she's overly thin, but still has a pair of big breasts and a pert arse.

i.e. Not a real person (sorry to smash the illustion guys ;))

Very entertaining and I have attempted to play the TR series too but I just couldn't stand the controls or the combat so I quit. The design of the character aside I didn't mind Lara on the PS because she seemed like a lady that sort of knew her stuff and her voice and accent were convincing and fairly real (if I'm wrong I'm sorry, its been a long ass time) but now I feel like they've added this desperate breathy-ness to the voice that says, "I'm totally hot for you; come play with me." I feel like every time gamers try to convince people that we aren't all totally sex starved, socially inept male kids looking for masturbation fodder it's kind of undermined by this kind of crap. The box art doesn't even feature her face, just a middriff and some titties.

But I kind of disagree with Yahtzee saying that they're trying to preserve her original design because I think that if anything they're adding a lot of Angelina Jolie to the mix as well.

Its not just male boob wanting men buying it. My girlfriend has it and loves the game.... Although maybe therres something there i should worry about. hah

lol. Guess the old girl wasn't up to learning any new tricks. Not any good ones anyway.

I was going to rent this game to see how it was, I guess I don't have to now.
Thanks for helping me save money.

likalaruku:
lol. Guess the old girl wasn't up to learning any new tricks. Not any good ones anyway.

well, one is new. you can use your guns wile hanging around or standing on a pole. that made things easier.

@roflross
you still can download the demo.

SirSchmoopy:
I'm only quoting this to tell you your avatar is awesome.

I wuv you Rob. Put me in a show (How many times do you hear THAT?). It could be a pointless plug for the shirts! But I digress.

Silveth:
My point was that this show is made by Yahtzee, and no one else, and it's his job to make us laugh and write a good review. How is it fair for us to bash him when he can't do that? What right to we have to expect him to make us laugh? None at all, and that was my point. That, and that NC is pathetic human being for premaking that diatribe.

Anyway, why do you defend him so? If you apparently don't like ZP anymore then get off this site and stop trying to prove you're right to everyone.

Why is it that people think when Nuke said 'ZP has changed', they automatically think he's saying 'ZP is bad'? There is a pretty big difference!
You said yourself it's his JOB to write a good REVIEW. Well I would agree 100%. What Nuke is saying is that there isn't anymore 'review' part! It's just rants and jokes about the game, gaming, or gamers in general (If games at all) that might tie into a barely review-esque line at the end. That's the problem he, myself, and many others have with the 'new' ZP. Nuke even said specifically that the show isn't bad. It changed. And that change is the source of guff. We would like reviews again. Not animated rants based on jokes that run on for too long.

And I defend Nuke because none of you know him. Everyone doing the front-line attacking on his post is a new member to the forums, who obviously has no idea who Nuke is. Unlike many of the new members, I'm not here for ZP. I think it's funny that someone would actually say 'if you don't like ZP, get off this site.'
The Escapist has FAR more to offer then simply ZP. And that's what I'm here for! I'm here for the forum community (And Unforgotten Realms...I wuv you Rob), and the people here-in. I've gotten to know Nuke, among many others, over the time I've been here and know that Nuke isn't this spotlight seeking egomaniac everyone (And by 'everyone' I mean 'the ZP fanboys who foamed at the mouth when reading one word of Nuke's post') says he is.
I'm not here to prove that either Nuke, or I, am right. Though I would say the change from the earlier ZP and the new ZP is pretty undeniable. I'm defending him because almost 100% of every negative comment about Nuke's post has completely misread, misinterpreted, glanced over (Assuming they know what he'll say), and/or missed the point of his post.
That, and Nuke is a stand up guy, a good writer, and a strong contributor to the Escapist forums and site as a whole.

Silveth:
If you apparently don't like ZP anymore then get off this site.

Hi. I'm from Escapist. I've never posted before in a Zero Punctuation thread, and don't watch the videos very often. In fact, you could say that while I chuckle at ZP, I'm not a fan. Certainly not a rabid one.

I'm also a part of a much larger community which in fact shuns the comments on Zero Punctuation because we much prefer actual conversation. We lurk in regions such as the User Reviews, Roleplay and Off Topic sections. There's even a part for Gaming Discussion for the so inclined. The Escapist is much bigger than you think. If you don't like that, feel free to leave the site.

In response to comments on Nuke Lassic's review, I would like to say that he has a point. While the earlier production was not as slick as the later ones, it was more game based. Tangent jokes, while amusing, aren't such good things for the content level.

At the risk of being branded an outcast, here goes:

I absolutely did not a laugh at anything in this episode. I really wish I could, but I just couldn't.

Like one said, they can't all be winners.

danebot:

EDIT: Are you kidding me up there with that copy-pasted text wall?

You have something you desperately want people to read, and yet you say nothing. You perched like a sniper waiting for the video to be released so you could soapbox in the first few posts on a site that is full of peple who enjoy the videos. The worst part is, you think it's worth reading, and that you're brillant! Thanks for your comments, but next time I want that kind of counter-opinion in my house I'll just invite a Jehova's witness in for coffee.

Oh my god, most definately qouted for truth. 100% agree.

I adore Yahtzee, but this "review" disappointed me greatly. It was not a review so much as it was one long breast and ass joke. I don't think he played the game very far, certainly not far enough to know that there weren't any boss fights.

I mean, his complaint that "we all know what the gameplay is" could be said about *any* sequel this year, yet these games got skewered for specific gameplay issues, not generically washed with the "it's Tomb Raider; let's all hate on it" brush.

I was actually looking forward to this review. After Yahtzee's extreme restraint in pulling out the breast jokes in his Soul Caliber 4 review (despite being accosted with breasts five times the size of Lara's and far more uncovered,) I had hope that perhaps he might avoid trite and overused comments regarding the franchise and treat the game as a *game* and not as a standup routine worthy of an off-strip, side-room Vegas comic. Clearly my hope was misplaced.

Hmm, I'm surprised he didn't mention about filling every room you come across with some kind of water via the magic of ancient fluid inducing timing puzzles. Curious.

Ah yes, Tomb Raider, while not on the same level as Sonic, the popularity has slipped big time.

Loving the Jason connection by the way!

Sir_Chumley_Warner:
Hmm, I'm surprised he didn't mention about filling every room you come across with some kind of water via the magic of ancient fluid inducing timing puzzles. Curious.

That's because you only did it in ONE room. And I don't think he played the game that far anyway.

good job yahtzee keep it up

Silveth:
None at all, and that was my point. That, and that NC is pathetic human being for premaking that diatribe.

Anyway, why do you defend him so? If you apparently don't like ZP anymore then get off this site and stop trying to prove you're right to everyone. Oh wait, this is the internet, nevermind, let's argue for eternity then.

I would have you know that this is not Yahtzee's website and that there is actually a large number of people who come to this website for other reasons then Zero Punctuation. In fact I do believe that there are a large number of people who no longer watch ZP or, maybe, never have. Looking around at the Escapist, even at the page around a ZP video, it is clear that the website is more than just ZP. There is the articles at the bottom of the page, two Escapist show advert, two Planetside War adverts and links to all the different features, news, columns and the forums at the top of the page. I fail to understand how one who composes himself intelligently, such as yourself, is able to so narrow mindedly ignore all these things and think that the Escapist is "Yahtzee's website". At the end of each ZP there is his website address for you to go and check out, why do you all still think that The Escapsit is for ZP and nothing else. The stupidity is astounding, I still can't believe that people would be so narrow minded.

I would also have you know that Newclassic is not a pathetic human being. The fact that you label him as such because he expressed his opinions is frankly nothing sort of disgusting. A human is able to disagree with others and to voice his opinions without being labeled as pathetic, if anything having the guts to post his opinions to the fans of ZP makes someone much more than pathetic, in my mind anyway. The fact that you think of someone as pathetic because they disagree with you on the quality of a video is the most idiotic thing I have seen in a long time. Is it to hard to argue with people without resulting to name calling?

Now, you thinking that him pre-making that rant is pathetic also does not make much sense. I read the early draft of that rant (I even pointed out a missing letter) and the majority of it had little to do with the actual review then ZP as a whole. He didn't criticize this weeks review with a pre-prepared rant, he criticized ZP with a pre-prepared rant. Seeing as how the general consensus is that the rant will be better suited for it's own thread why is it wrong that he wrote this before this weeks ZP aired? If he wrote the rant in a separate thread before this one aired would be such a big deal? No it would not and I don't think this anything to do with comment etiquette (if such an absurd notion exists). I think the reason you think the reason you think posting a pre-prepared rant is pathetic is because that post does not agree with your tastes. Frankly, I think that, that is pathetic.

The Escapist is often described as "The last bastion of sanity on the Internet" and this has always been something that I have disagreed with. While I did disagree with that statement I always felt like this is a nice and friendly place, a place where everyone is generally nice to everyone else. However looking over this thread it seems that I may have been wrong. I've always thought that even those that fight and suck up in the ZP thread are genuinely nice people and that if they wanted could become the friends of everyone else that stays away from the ZP thread. Hell, I've even defended you lot at some points. For a while I used a ZP avatar as a very small protest against the pre-conceived notion that everyone with a ZP avatar is an idiot and a fanboy. But looking over this thread, especially at the snarky comments such as yours, I can't help but feel like this belief has been a lie, as if this place isn't as nice as it once was. Maybe I was foolish to thing that Neclassic's rant will be well recieved but I don't think I was foolish to expect him not to be insulted personally.

"Funny, funny, humor"???? Its neither funny, nor a humor, there is nothing "english" either! If someone (apparently a lot) gets horny watching variety of attributes and items being abused and stuck everywhere by a tiny little triangle, representing someone's sexual past present or dreams - thats what funny is..or at least it was..

ZP is everything but game reviewer, and I don't get the people who dislike him, why get so mad, considering the essence of his work..

spudpuffin:

NewClassic:
-snip-

look m8 u need a girl were not here for comparisons to the "old days" were here for 4 minutes of a guy making semi-resonable arguments and nit picking that hilarious!

Let me explain to you why there is a comment section. So people who watch Yahtzee can comment on and/or discuss what they've seen. NewClassic isn't bashing it, he's simply putting forth his opinion in a well constructed and reasonable manner.

This isn't the the praise section. If you really enjoy Yahtzee and think that everything he does is dusted with gold and made of rainbows then I can respect that. Good for you. Now, do everyone else a favour and give them the same courtesy.

Omega87:

danebot:

EDIT: Are you kidding me up there with that copy-pasted text wall?

You have something you desperately want people to read, and yet you say nothing. You perched like a sniper waiting for the video to be released so you could soapbox in the first few posts on a site that is full of peple who enjoy the videos. The worst part is, you think it's worth reading, and that you're brillant! Thanks for your comments, but next time I want that kind of counter-opinion in my house I'll just invite a Jehova's witness in for coffee.

Oh my god, most definately qouted for truth. 100% agree.

I'd just like to point out the obvious here. It's a comments page, not a praise page. NewClassic's rant is as valid as your opinion, just more eloquent. And I agree with him. Yahtzee might still be funny, but I'd prefer to hear a little about the actual game.
Edit. Ninja'd. Bugger. With exactly the same comment though, so great minds and all that ;)

This is one of my favorites.

Baby Tea:
Well, I would disagree ("Of course!" They say).
A review doesn't have to be an in depth, all bases covering, ending in a 'score' type of format. Some (many) are, but those things aren't mandatory for a review. Two of you mentioned either IGN or G4 as the review example (Admittedly, the IGN mention wasn't entirely 'serious'), which leads me to believe that a review is only a review, for you, if it falls into that format.

I stand by the Yahtzee is reviewing with comedy. You can state that I've missed the 'point' (As you already have), but the change from the earlier episodes to the current ones is undeniable. You call it the changing, or the 'evolution' (if you will) of his 'style'. I call it Yahtzee veering away from what he was supposed to deliver: A comedic review.

Also, I don't think Yahtzee give his viewers the credit to catch on that it isn't a review, must comedy in the guise of a review (And after reading some of the comments on the various ZP, I don't blame him). So I wouldn't give him the credit that's he'd do something like that.

I don't personally believe that a review should give a score, should cover all possible areas of analysis and even should be in depth. I've written concept reviews in my time. I'm talking more about the underlying journalistic principles of the reviewer. Journalism has its own code of ethics and standards and videogames journalism is no different, with special categories of ethics and standards unique to the medium. Yahtzee takes a sledgehammer to them. In fact, he quite deliberately goes against certain standards (and even makes light of that in some reviews) for comic effect, which is possibly why he calls himself a "professional troll". I'm not simply talking about him being a bad journalist, I'm talking about him deliberately and conscious going against journalism to generate laughs.

I didn't really understand your last paragraph, so I'll have to guess what it's supposed to say. I don't think Yahtzee is the type to dumb down for the masses and make apparent what he's doing. This is the guy who referenced Proust's " la Recherche du Temps Perdu" as a throwaway gag, a reference that would probably have a lot of gamers reaching for Wikipedia. Again, the "professional troll" line indicates he knows he's going to wind up a lot of people by turning what is ostensibly a review into a hilarious diatribe that abuses the format, and by having mailbag showdowns (incidentally, his review of SSB: Brawl was a classic example of How Not To Review A Game) he basks in the ire he creates, rather than clarifying "These aren't proper reviews you know, so don't get angry on account of me".

To be perfectly honest, I think this is a bit moot. While the quantity of jokes has increased of late, the quantity of review hasn't even gone down that much. I watched three or four older reviews and contrasted them with three or four from the last two months and the change is hardly pronounced. The main difference in the humour/comedy axis is that these days he'll vary the formula by throwing in something that is mostly comedy and little review. He did so this week because TR: Underworld gives him very little to say. Believe me, as a reviewer the scourge of your existence is the generic, mediocre product that is a nightmare to write a review about because there's nothing to say. Jeremy Clarkson actually quit the old, serious Top Gear for exactly this reason. Finding something to say each week about something utterly unexceptional and unoriginal is a nightmare.

I think this whole issue can be summarised by what someone said above: having watched the entire series for the first time, he found some mediocrity and some brilliance but no real drop in quality. After over a year of weekly episodes, the likelihood is that the critics have just got bored of ZP, plain and simple. Trying to dress that up as objective critique of craft with a strategically placed rant is cute but misguided. I think I've read at least one "not as good as it used to be" and one "return to form" post in every single ZP discussion thread for the last six months of videos. Sometimes the "return to form" was on an episode I thought was very mediocre, sometimes the "not as good" video was one that I had rewatched out of enjoyment. Sometimes the complete opposite. The only real difference with New Classic's post (apart from the cat picture) is that he bases it on what I consider a completely false assumption, and I think I've given plenty of justification for calling it false in the last few posts. If you don't agree after reading this post, I don't think you're going to agree at all.

Silveth:

My point was that this show is made by Yahtzee, and no one else, and it's his job to make us laugh and write a good review. How is it fair for us to bash him when he can't do that? What right to we have to expect him to make us laugh? None at all, and that was my point. That, and that NC is pathetic human being for premaking that diatribe.

Anyway, why do you defend him so? If you apparently don't like ZP anymore then get off this site and stop trying to prove you're right to everyone. Oh wait, this is the internet, nevermind, let's argue for eternity then.

First of all, where the criky fuck do you get off calling an obviously well-versed and well respected member of this community that you've never even met before that he's a "pathetic human being".

With the initial outrage out of the way, we can move on. You need to realize something, bub. This thread we're in is a "comments page", the novel concept of which is that you write comments in it. Most of those "comments" usually amount to worthless dribble and one sentence posts (I've counted at least five people who have only said "I'M MR. BRAIN HAT!"), but its a comment section nevertheless. Considering that NewClassic's points are valid, they're well explained, and he isn't trying to convert anyone over to his way of thinking, then this isn't even an issue. The only reason you give a damn is because he said something that is in disagreement with your beliefs.

Second, it is very much Yahtzee's job to make us laugh and write a good review. Key word there is "job". He gets paid for it, he has merchandise because of it, and he's received internet stardom as a result of it. We, as the target audience, have every right to comment on his work any way we damn well choose.

Oh, and one last thing: this is not Yahtzee's website. The Escapist is an online magazine that has existed for several years before ZP showed up and it's going to go on existing long after it's gone. There's far more to this place than just Yahtzee, and if you venture out of the dank cave that is this comment's page you might see a few things that may catch your eye. In the meantime, if you can't be bothered, maybe you should take your own advice and get out. If your only going to show the people here disrespect we don't want you here.

Well this has been up for a day already which makes my response a bit late.

In general I think Yahtzee is right. Lara Croft might want to retire from games and start making hard core XXX rated kink movies. I mean honestly, the selling point has so far been the sex appeal of the character. Sure in the beginning the series was revolutionary and lauded with praise for a potential it never was able to reach.

Honestly I think the bad camera in games like this is a design desician and shows part of the flaw of the genere. Without those "leaps of faith", horrendously badly designed "perfect timing" jumps and other things the game just wouldn't be very challenging. It's one of those situations where it seems bad design became a defining feature of the game series.

Honestly I've found that imitators like "Uncharted" have continued this way of doing the genere, as I spent as much time trying to guess where I was supposed to go (ie where to jump next in a sequence), than I did actually progressing through the game it seemed.

So basically they might as well just use Lara Croft's sex appeal in the most obvious forum for it: animated sex movies. I mean honestly those aspects of the character are aguably the ones that worked the way they were supposed to from the very beginning. >:)

In response to the other comments:

I think Yahtzee has achieved enough of a fan base right now where not everyone is going to be happy with everything he does. As the number of people watching him grows, so will the negative feedback. Just like in nearly anything game related I expect eventually his criticism will be overwhelmingly negative. To some extent the more stinking bile thrown at something online (ie the more people who care enough to say something) the more successful it is.

It should also be noted that Yahtzee has received criticism from the very beginning that he was a humourist and not an entirely serious reviewer. This includes me incidently. To some extent I think he shifted a bit in tone due to what he felt the fans wanted. However he is still a bile spewing comedic reviewer, and arguably one of the more entertaining prescences for game geeks on the Internet. ZP certainly livens up my week, and I've actually found myself looking forward to it.

My biggest concern is that Yahtzee will burn out and ZP will disappear. I mean it will happen eventually (he's only human) but I hope it occurs later rather than sooner.

>>>----Therumancer--->

Disclaimer: This is in fact my first post, despite the fact that I've been watching for a while. I know that means most of you will just ignore it, so I figured it would be a good idea to just put this up here to save you all the trouble.

It seems the topic of discussion is the purpose of Yahtzee, which I think he points out very clearly. I'm sure everyone here watched the Halo 3 video, so I think I will point out one thing. "All of the other reviews have put me in an awkward position...." which is him calling himself a reviewer. He then goes on, in the "Mailbag Showdown" to state that he sees a review as more than some numeric thing. -That- is why he doesn't do things like average. I think he used the word review a few times in there, too. He calls himself a reviewer, says he's reviewing things, which generally means he's a review.

Now the next question is really "What makes Yahtzee great?" I would say that it's his ability to A) make relevant jokes B) review while doing A and C) ... .... well, there really isn't a C, but you get my point. He reviews games, makes jokes, people laugh. He -just- makes jokes and some people laugh. Other people make huge posts like NC did. And I know you can't please everyone, but when you have a winning formula -stick with it-. Anyway, those are just my two cents.

Of course, my post will be generally ignored, distorted, or otherwise used to somehow say that I dislike ZP. People will tell me to "gtfo", or simply tell me I "don't get it", so I guess this was all a waste of time. I just felt like it needed to be said.

That aside, this wasn't actually funny. I mean, I laughed a couple of times, it had it's moments. Overall, though, this seemed to lack the sort of charm that drew me to this video series in the first place. It isn't -bad-, it just isn't what it used to be.

I guess it's kind of predictable Yahtzee would devolve into one big cavalcade of breast & bottom jokes chasing each other like Benny Hill characters to the tune of Yakety-sax, but a lot of them fell flat because:

a. Lara underwent a full cup-size reduction for Legend (which was picked up as a news story in itself by many gaming and non-gaming media), in an offensively transparent attempt to play down accusations of sexism and feminine objectification. Unfortunately the fact that they keep her ludicrously long legs, waist and cupie-doll features undermines their effort since she's clearly meant to be a cartoonish figure and not a realistic representation of a female. They should have either kept her cartoonish proportions and extended it to other characters a la Team Fortress, or made her entirely realistic. Thus all the "big boob" jokes fall kind of flat when you realise the Lara of Legend & Underworld is a modest C-cup now.

b. The "boobs on the cover" jabs would've made a lot more sense if LARA'S TORSO WASN'T OBSCURED BY THE TITLE, which Yahtzee even illustrates, calling attention to his own nonsense. Look at the cover, you can barely see her tits! I'd say it's her midriff, hips and thighs that are more the cause of excitable teens' cold sweats in this case than her barely-seen chest.

c. ... They're just tits, Yahtzee. They're a normal part of the female anatomy. Why not criticise other games for showing impossibly muscular men on the cover with gigantic guns and rippling biceps or giant robots blowing stuff up on their covers? They're just as transparent as sticking a buxom babe on the cover. Besides, a preoccupation with Lara's figure is playing right into Crystal Dynamic's hands - a review that makes no mention whatsoever of Lara's appearance would've been refreshing, and it would've shown that their attempt to provoke discussion and attention had failed. It takes attention away from the stuff that matters - the gameplay.

d. "Anything more than a handful is a waste" is completely true - a girl with large breasts being with a guy who has such a myopic appreciation of them is a tragic waste. The spelunking joke: Jesus, if you think LARA's tits are big I dread to imagine what you'd think about Fuko, Merilyn Sakova or Milena Velba. Small reference pools in your porn, Yahtzee.

Yes I did make an entire humourless post about amble bosoms. I make no apologies for it, for the subject is very dear to me. Anyway, disregarding the boobs:

The criticism of Lara being an evil nutcase: when was this a point of contention? Lara was always a deeply troubled anti-hero motivated by greed with a death wish, she was never a heroic protagonist in the traditional cliche sense. That's what makes her interesting. It's as silly as criticizing God of War because Kratos is a freaking psychopath: that's point of the character. She steals stuff from ruins because she's a collector of fine artifacts, she kills rare animals because the Croft Family are English aristocrats who probably have a history of big game hunting, she kills her competitors because she's not quite right in the head. I'd take her callousness to endangered species and merciless approach to rival tomb raiders over her silly WOT AVE OI BECUM hand wringing in Legend any day. She isn't Indiana "It Belongs in a Museum" Jones, she's Lara "It Belongs In My House Displayed Between Excalibur And My Mounted Tyrannosaurus Head" Croft.

Finally, the fact that the games are just the same with a change of scenery: while progress and evolution is always a good thing, sometimes if something works well (or at least competently), it's better than ditching it for something that fails. Tomb Raider, for me, was always about exploring awesome ruins, soaking up the atmosphere and solving neat puzzles. The fact that the combat-heavy games away from ruins like Angel of Darkness failed indicates this is a major selling point for the series. It's more akin to those Flight Simulator games, except with a story, and set in fantastic ruins. Thus Tomb Raider always has a special place in my heart.

SYSTEM-J:

I don't personally believe that a review should give a score, should cover all possible areas of analysis and even should be in depth. I've written concept reviews in my time. I'm talking more about the underlying journalistic principles of the reviewer. Journalism has its own code of ethics and standards and videogames journalism is no different, with special categories of ethics and standards unique to the medium. Yahtzee takes a sledgehammer to them. In fact, he quite deliberately goes against certain standards (and even makes light of that in some reviews) for comic effect, which is possibly why he calls himself a "professional troll". I'm not simply talking about him being a bad journalist, I'm talking about him deliberately and conscious going against journalism to generate laughs.

Just because he goes against certain practices and standards, doesn't mean it's any less of a review. It might be, when seen from a writer's perspective, a piss poor actual 'review', but a review it still is. So whether he's reviewing for laughs or for trolling purposes (Or both), he's still reviewing.

SYSTEM-J:
I didn't really understand your last paragraph, so I'll have to guess what it's supposed to say. I don't think Yahtzee is the type to dumb down for the masses and make apparent what he's doing. This is the guy who referenced Proust's " la Recherche du Temps Perdu" as a throwaway gag, a reference that would probably have a lot of gamers reaching for Wikipedia. Again, the "professional troll" line indicates he knows he's going to wind up a lot of people by turning what is ostensibly a review into a hilarious diatribe that abuses the format, and by having mailbag showdowns (incidentally, his review of SSB: Brawl was a classic example of How Not To Review A Game) he basks in the ire he creates, rather than clarifying "These aren't proper reviews you know, so don't get angry on account of me".

I'd say the fact that he didn't say that only solidifies my point that these videos are, indeed, reviews. He calls them reviews himself! And whether or not they are done 'properly' is irrelevant. Whether poor or stellar, they are still reviews.

SYSTEM-J:
Believe me, as a reviewer the scourge of your existence is the generic, mediocre product that is a nightmare to write a review about because there's nothing to say. Jeremy Clarkson actually quit the old, serious Top Gear for exactly this reason. Finding something to say each week about something utterly unexceptional and unoriginal is a nightmare.

Then don't review it! If it's SO beneath him, review something else! I agree that wading through the mundane can suck, but even in his year-end show he said there were plenty of popular games he glanced over. Review those, then! Review one that's interesting! If he is indeed a 'professional troll', you think he'd do the games that actually had a solid fanbase (Gears of War, perhaps), rather then one we all figured would suck (TR) just so he could waste 3 minutes on boob jokes.

SYSTEM-J:
The only real difference with New Classic's post (apart from the cat picture) is that he bases it on what I consider a completely false assumption, and I think I've given plenty of justification for calling it false in the last few posts. If you don't agree after reading this post, I don't think you're going to agree at all.

Well I don't think you've given 'plenty of justification'. While your responses have been far better written and thought out then many of the other nay-sayers, I don't consider the 'assumption' that ZP is actually a review of sorts (However unorthodox) to be false.
It appears we'll have to agree to disagree.

Baby Tea:
Just because he goes against certain practices and standards, doesn't mean it's any less of a review. It might be, when seen from a writer's perspective, a piss poor actual 'review', but a review it still is. So whether he's reviewing for laughs or for trolling purposes (Or both), he's still reviewing...

I'd say the fact that he didn't say that only solidifies my point that these videos are, indeed, reviews. He calls them reviews himself! And whether or not they are done 'properly' is irrelevant. Whether poor or stellar, they are still reviews...

...Well I don't think you've given 'plenty of justification'. While your responses have been far better written and thought out then many of the other nay-sayers, I don't consider the 'assumption' that ZP is actually a review of sorts (However unorthodox) to be false.
It appears we'll have to agree to disagree.

I think you're speaking on behalf of New Classic a little too much here, and deviating from the point he was making. All of these replies are stating the same thing: ZP is, in some respect, a review show. Which I was never denying and was never the issue. As I've said, the issue is that of emphasis. New Classic says this:

For the most part, Zero Punctuation is no longer about game reviews, and is now about gaming-related humor.

The point he's making is that the emphasis of ZP has shifted away from the reviews and towards the humour. The point I'm making is that ZP always emphasised the comedy over the review. In short, New Classic's mistaken assumption is not that ZP is a review show of some form, but that ZP was (and should still be) about the review first and foremost.

Then don't review it! If it's SO beneath him, review something else! I agree that wading through the mundane can suck, but even in his year-end show he said there were plenty of popular games he glanced over. Review those, then! Review one that's interesting! If he is indeed a 'professional troll', you think he'd do the games that actually had a solid fanbase (Gears of War, perhaps), rather then one we all figured would suck (TR) just so he could waste 3 minutes on boob jokes.

It's not about it being beneath him, but rather about it being boring to talk about. And what makes you think a game being popular makes it any more interesting to talk about? One of his closing credits captions said that every time he began to review Far Cry 2, something more interesting came along. It's hardly as though Tomb Raider is an unsuccessful franchise- it wouldn't be up to eight sequels if people weren't buying them in large numbers.

Also, as I've already said, having a review with almost no review breaks up the routine a bit and gives us something different. Listening to Yahtzee go through the motions over a mediocre game like GOW2 that he obviously doesn't care about is less interesting than four minutes of well-observed humour about the exploits of one of gaming's ultimate icons.

Loved the lactose intolerant hindu and the autistic kid hooked up to an IV of sherbet. That's pure comedy gold right there.
Great start to 2009!

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