Metacritic scores aren't everything, and can actually be harmful to games, says EA Sports President Peter Moore.
There are all kinds of ways to measure success, but for videogames, the foremost metric seems to be a game's Metacritic score. But EA's Sports President Peter Moore says that he won't be using Metacritic scores as a target for FIFA 11 and thinks that focusing on them too much can lead developers down the wrong path.
When FIFA Soccer 10 was being developed, Moore challenged the team to win a Metacritic score of 90 or better for the game. It was successful in this challenge - with the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions of the game at least, which have scores of 90 and 91 respectively - but Moore believes that it's almost impossible for sports games to really go higher than that.
"In terms of what I want from FIFA 11," he said. "It is difficult to tell them to go and get a 92 or 93. It is almost impossible to take an iterative annual sports title and get it into the mid-90s." He went on to say that poor reviews don't necessarily translate to poor sales, citing the recent Robin Hood film that got a very mixed reception from critics and yet performed very well at the box office.
Moore said that Metacritic was a "slipperly slope," and there was a danger of getting hung up on the scores. Developers could find themselves treating the number as more important than the game itself, he said, and added that that was a line he was keen not to cross with EA Sports games.