Kane & Lynch Review Spin

Here's a little more controversy about Kane & Lynch reviews, already the subject of a firestorm over the GameSpot situation that surfaced last week (story). GameBump points out the Flash introduction on the Kane & Lynch: Dead Men features some finessed review quotes and scores that do not reflect the actual reception for IO Interactive's new action game. The intro lists the following blurbs, each preceded by five prominent stars: "'…it's the best emulation of being in the midst of a Michael Mann movie we've ever seen.' GameSpy," and 'A mercenary, a psychopath & a bundle of cash… what could go wrong? Game Informer'." The trouble is GameSpy gave the game three stars and Game Informer scored the game seven out of ten, and neither related quote is from the reviews, the GameSpy quote is from a E3 preview of the game, and it's not clear where the GameInformer quote/marketing blurb is from (presumably the print magazine). Finally, there's an article format Q&A with Jeff "Gertsmann" Gerstmann on Joystiq (thanks FiringSquad) where the ex-GameSpot editor cannot go into the reasons behind his parting with the website, but does defend his Kane & Lynch review, and says this recent experience does not leave him sharing the concern that "game writing is ethically bankrupt."
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59.
 
No subject
Dec 7, 2007, 18:03
59.
No subject Dec 7, 2007, 18:03
Dec 7, 2007, 18:03
 
There is a pretty good movie on Jeff on Gamespot's "On the Spot".

http://www.gamespot.com/video/0/6183759/on_the_spot20071206
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58.
 
Re: what is the big deal?
Dec 3, 2007, 23:37
58.
Re: what is the big deal? Dec 3, 2007, 23:37
Dec 3, 2007, 23:37
 
This has nothing to do with The Witcher besides the fact it's the game he attempted to review. This is more about poor journalism than anything else. We could just as easily be talking about CoD4 or some other game.

My examples concerning The Witcher may have been poor but they remain. He couldn't possibly see how the game changed because he never played enough of it. And I am left wondering if that is also the case with you as well.

**** Warning slight spoiler ahead about The Witcher & Signs contained in the game! ****

Geralt doesn't get all his signs (magic) until near the end of Act II so how could he fully compare them to each other or the way they effect the game-play when he only had use of two of the five? Not that he tried to dig very deep since he didn't even mention them.

Oh, that's right because every other game before this that has had magic in it would magically (sorry I had to) let him comprehend the games features before even experiencing them all. And again each one allows you to play the game in different ways depending on your skill levels. So they all get better and have different benefits as you progress into the game. Again no need to go into detail if you play it that far you can experiment with them to your hearts delight.

Plus the bottom line still stands he would have been able to write a better review if he had actually invested more time playing the game. Glad you're ok with first impressions being passed off as reviews but I'm not.

"Again, something that is present from the start of the game and is present in MANY other games before it.

I'm glad you like The Witcher. I do too. But you are sounding a little too defensive about it to the point that your examples are not unique to this game, nor are they actual gameplay examples that would change the outcome of a review as the game progresses."


I am again left wondering just how much of the game you have played. Because you're trivializing one of the best features of the game as if you have no idea just how well done it is. And no it has not been done this well in more than a few games that I can remember. If you have a list of games which have handled choice and consequences as well as or better than The Witcher besides Fallout, Torment, and possibly MotB (though I haven't finished it)... well by all means, please, let me know. Because I hate to miss out on a great game.

I don't need to defend The Witcher. Read a few forums. The game is defending itself. I can see we are both too bull-headed to give into the others way of thinking so we might as well just agree to disagree.


This comment was edited on Dec 4, 01:32.
57.
 
Re: LOL
Dec 3, 2007, 23:32
57.
Re: LOL Dec 3, 2007, 23:32
Dec 3, 2007, 23:32
 
Ok, when you find a site that meets that standard let me know, until then I'll happily read reviews by folks that played the game a few hours and wrote a review.

There are no sites that meet that standard because multiplayer games are fundamentally difficult to review. As I said before, there are far too many variables involved that can drastically change the experience for the reviewer. Any professional "review" of a multiplayer game is based on the limited perspective of a newb who played the game before any real community had been formed and before the game's depth and subtleties had been brought to light. This is why multiplayer reviews are completely worthless and should be labeled as "initial impressions" instead.

If there was a movie 40 hours long and you watched the first 10 of it to write a review I'd say that is enough time to write a review.

That's only a quarter of the film and is equivalent to half an hour in a regular two hour feature. So no, watching 10 hours of a 40 hour movie is not sufficient to write a good review.

And I never said that my expectations were made with business in mind. I couldn't care less about the business aspect. The business aspect is what lead to this whole ordeal in the first place. No, I'm talking about what should be done for the sake of journalistic integrity. If I'm going to buy something based on someone's review, I expect that review to be complete, thorough and considerate of the game as a whole, not an incomplete impression of it.

Bottom line: If you are going to review something, you damn well better review all of it. I don't care how long it takes. Bad for business? Sure. Good for readers? Definitely.

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56.
 
Re: what is the big deal?
Dec 3, 2007, 21:26
56.
Re: what is the big deal? Dec 3, 2007, 21:26
Dec 3, 2007, 21:26
 
It gives the impression that the military is unethical and irresponsible, willing to cater to the lowest common denominator, and just plain full of idiots and other low class people.

Why is that a bad thing? The military wants to fill their ranks with expendables, not intellectuals. I feel bad for the people who get duped by their ads and recruiters, but if it avoids a draft then I couldn't care less. Besides, the marketing strategy of the US military is positively benign compared to the wartime atrocities they've committed.

This comment was edited on Dec 3, 21:29.
55.
 
Re: The Escapist - Bad Example
Dec 3, 2007, 21:15
55.
Re: The Escapist - Bad Example Dec 3, 2007, 21:15
Dec 3, 2007, 21:15
 
Poor analogy. A better analogy would be comparing games to movies. Do you review a movie based upon the first half hour? No, you review after watching the whole thing.

While it may not be the best analogy, it still works and is completely relevant.

Movies are 80min to 4hours, most being between 90min and 120min. Most people have the time for such a short duration. Some reviewers however will leave the theatre after watching only half a movie...sometimes it's because they have 4 other movies to see that day for review, other times the movie just sucks and isn't worth wasting the time.

Do you think book reviewers read every word on every page, and every chapter? No, they don't.

300 hours spent playing a multiplayer game for review? That is over a month of playing 8 hours a day, everyday. You are on crack, plain and simple. You obviously have no grasp on reality if you really think that.

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Join the "Blues News" Steam Community Group. http://steamcommunity.com/groups/bluesnews/
54.
 
LOL
Dec 3, 2007, 20:53
54.
LOL Dec 3, 2007, 20:53
Dec 3, 2007, 20:53
 
I'd say that at least 300 hours of gameplay would be necessary.

Ok, when you find a site that meets that standard let me know, until then I'll happily read reviews by folks that played the game a few hours and wrote a review.

And reviewing a movie after 1/2 an hour is nothing like reviewing a game after 10 hours.

If there was a movie 40 hours long and you watched the first 10 of it to write a review I'd say that is enough time to write a review. The issue is time. There are only so many hours in a day and you need to review lots of games so giving each game as much time as it needs isn't going to work.

You have to pick a realistic number of hours that a reviewer needs to write an objective review. Having a hard rule that says you must complete the game is not necessary.

I'd love to see your business model for how you'd run a review site with 300 hours needed before you could review a multiplayer game. You'd have to pay the guys minimum wage and insist they work on the weekends for free. And after weeks of work you'd have 1 review! BRILLIANT!

Ending Song on Portal:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KjGfgV7rJHI
53.
 
Re: The Escapist - Bad Example
Dec 3, 2007, 20:14
PHJF
 
53.
Re: The Escapist - Bad Example Dec 3, 2007, 20:14
Dec 3, 2007, 20:14
 PHJF
 
Ok, get back to me with your WoW review after you finish that.
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52.
 
Re: The Escapist - Bad Example
Dec 3, 2007, 20:06
52.
Re: The Escapist - Bad Example Dec 3, 2007, 20:06
Dec 3, 2007, 20:06
 
Since we keep going back to consumer reports, do you think they test drive cars for 100,000 miles before they write the reviews?

Poor analogy. A better analogy would be comparing games to movies. Do you review a movie based upon the first half hour? No, you review after watching the whole thing.

As for multiplayer games, those are a bit tricky. There are so many variables involved: the reviewer's skill, the skill of his teammates/opponents, the server(s) he plays on, what stage the community is at, how long the reviewer played for, etc. The Tribes reviews, for example, were completely useless, as they were written before skiing was even discovered. Since skiing completely changed the game, any reviews written based off the initial release were invalidated.

With that in mind, I think multiplayer reviews are pretty pointless but if they had to be done, I'd say that at least 300 hours of gameplay would be necessary.

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51.
 
Re: No subject
Dec 3, 2007, 19:44
51.
Re: No subject Dec 3, 2007, 19:44
Dec 3, 2007, 19:44
 
Not only do the combat chains lengthen as you spend your talent points but depending on where you put those points Geralt's combat moves and their effectiveness changes also.

Shocker! /sarcasm

So you agree with me then. Gameplay doesn't really change throughout the game.

Chains and Combat moves are still present early in the game. Just because the chains get longer, the combat moves have more effectiveness, etc, does not mean gameplay changes. The fundamentals are there from the beginning, they get enhanced as you get stronger. That's pretty much what happens in every game.

Plus depending on how you respond during dialog options the story plays out differently.

Again, something that is present from the start of the game and is present in MANY other games before it.

I'm glad you like The Witcher. I do too. But you are sounding a little too defensive about it to the point that your examples are not unique to this game, nor are they actual gameplay examples that would change the outcome of a review as the game progresses.

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Currently fragging in Team Fortress 2, Episode 2, Portal and CoH Opposing Fronts.

Join the "Blues News" Steam Community Group. http://steamcommunity.com/groups/bluesnews/
50.
 
Re: what is the big deal?
Dec 3, 2007, 19:27
50.
Re: what is the big deal? Dec 3, 2007, 19:27
Dec 3, 2007, 19:27
 
I can't believe you're actually defending military ads showing up next to Pokemon video game reviews. You should be able to see how this lowers people's respect for the military. It gives the impression that the military is unethical and irresponsible, willing to cater to the lowest common denominator, and just plain full of idiots and other low class people. It's even worse when US military ads show up primarily alongside TV shows like wrestling, featuring such intellectual powerhouses such as Hulk Hogan.

This entire controversy is about how marketing and ethics don't mix. Marketing corrupts. And yet here you are defending some rather crappy aspects of it. Bizarre.
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49.
 
Re: The Escapist - Bad Example
Dec 3, 2007, 19:26
49.
Re: The Escapist - Bad Example Dec 3, 2007, 19:26
Dec 3, 2007, 19:26
 
How about multiplayer games?

Interested in what some people think for that.

Insisting a review only be written after a game has been played from start to finish is not realistic. Once you've played a game for a few hours, say 4 at very least, you should have a very good idea how good or bad the game is.

There are a ton of games coming out all the time and many have online portions as well as single player games. We won't see reviews until well after the game is released if we make it a rule to finish every game.

For me that is too late, when new games come out I expect reviews to be ready and waiting. If a site doesn't have them I will find them elsewhere and probably not visit the sites that take the time to play the game in full.

Since we keep going back to consumer reports, do you think they test drive cars for 100,000 miles before they write the reviews? No, that isn't realistic, they spend a decent amount of time driving it and testing the important features that people will have questions about and write their findings. Same is true with games in most cases. 10 hours is more than enough time.

Ending Song on Portal:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KjGfgV7rJHI
48.
 
Re: No subject
Dec 3, 2007, 19:17
48.
Re: No subject Dec 3, 2007, 19:17
Dec 3, 2007, 19:17
 
"Makes more sense now. As for the 10 hours to review. That's enough to see a massive chunk of the game. I'm not even that far in The Witcher, but I've already generated plenty of opinions on gameplay and that gameplay is very unlikely to change as the game progresses."

Oh, but you're wrong. At least as far as The Witcher is concerned. One of the many great things about the game that the Cliff Notes method for games review will cause you to miss out on.

Not only do the combat chains lengthen as you spend your talent points but depending on where you put those points Geralt's combat moves and their effectiveness changes also. I would say the great combat animations are one of the reasons the game stands out and combat never got dull. Of course they didn't use it as filler for the most part like so many other games.

Plus depending on how you respond during dialog options the story plays out differently. Which is something the Cliff Note method never even allows you to witness. The story and the rich game-world are the meat of the game. Playing to the end of Act I just got you to the in-game warning (so to speak) that your actions have consequences.

Also my opinion is Act I served as somewhat of a tutorial along with the Prologue. Not until Act II do things open up and you are given more of the game-world and story elements to explore and interact with. Also you begin to see some of the truly beautiful locations in the game.

But believe me (from somebody who has finished the game and played Act I to completion two other times) the journey was well worth it. The game on a whole is one of the best in the genre.

I've never been excited about a patch release before but I am for this next Witcher patch. Because I want to restart the game with shorter loads (hopefully).

As far as K & L goes I think I will pick it up in the bargain bin and see if it is truly as bad as it appears.

47.
 
Re: what is the big deal?
Dec 3, 2007, 18:55
47.
Re: what is the big deal? Dec 3, 2007, 18:55
Dec 3, 2007, 18:55
 
Do you comprehend what recruiting (marketing) actually means? You place your ad where you have the best chance of it being acted upon. That's why you don't see ads for tampons on Blues. Get it, dumbfuck? Your moral reservations mean nothing to me other than an opportunity to push your stupid agenda.

46.
 
Re: No subject
Dec 3, 2007, 18:50
46.
Re: No subject Dec 3, 2007, 18:50
Dec 3, 2007, 18:50
 
I boycotted by canceling.

45.
 
Re: The Escapist - Bad Example
Dec 3, 2007, 17:39
45.
Re: The Escapist - Bad Example Dec 3, 2007, 17:39
Dec 3, 2007, 17:39
 
It's amazing that any "review" can be posted where the game was NOT finished.

How about multiplayer games?

Interested in what some people think for that.

44.
 
Re: The Escapist - Bad Example
Dec 3, 2007, 17:16
44.
Re: The Escapist - Bad Example Dec 3, 2007, 17:16
Dec 3, 2007, 17:16
 
They are provided to them before they hit retail shelves. Patch was most likely not available at the time of review, and they rarely are. If you finish the review or are near publication time, you are not generally going to go back over your review to see if they fixed anything.

It's amazing that any "review" can be posted where the game was NOT finished.


Every professional game review should require that the game be completed. If the game hasn't been completed, it should be a first impression, not a review.

As logical as that sounds, it's sad it even has to be mentioned. This is why "game writing is ethically bankrupt." Those of you who cited Consumer Reports as a good example of 'neutrality' are spot on. There's a reason why they don't carry advertisements. Ironically, Consumer Reports is respected by most in the industry for that very fact.

43.
 
Re: No subject
Dec 3, 2007, 17:03
43.
Re: No subject Dec 3, 2007, 17:03
Dec 3, 2007, 17:03
 

They pulled the video review. XBox360 and PS3 text reviews are still there. Don't know if there was ever a PC text review.

Right you are Dagok.

Its still easy to see that G-Spot is in full damage control mode trying to cover there biased ass with both hands.

42.
 
Re: No subject
Dec 3, 2007, 16:44
42.
Re: No subject Dec 3, 2007, 16:44
Dec 3, 2007, 16:44
 
Dagok, I'm sorry to get you derailed there. I thought Tumbler and I were discussing the recent similar issue with an Escapist review of The Witcher.

Makes more sense now. As for the 10 hours to review. That's enough to see a massive chunk of the game. I'm not even that far in The Witcher, but I've already generated plenty of opinions on gameplay and that gameplay is very unlikely to change as the game progresses.

As someone already mentioned, and I agree...this whole issue is probably more about Jeff saying 'Don't buy this game. At least not at full price.' (which was in the Video review that was pulled) than it is about the content of his review. Seeing as the text reviews & score are still there with edits.

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Currently fragging in Team Fortress 2, Episode 2, Portal and CoH Opposing Fronts.

Join the "Blues News" Steam Community Group. http://steamcommunity.com/groups/bluesnews/
This comment was edited on Dec 3, 16:48.
41.
 
Re: The Escapist - Bad Example
Dec 3, 2007, 16:33
41.
Re: The Escapist - Bad Example Dec 3, 2007, 16:33
Dec 3, 2007, 16:33
 
Reviewing a game after 10 hours of play is fine. Reviewing after 4 hours is probably ok as well. To understand the mechanics of the game and decide if it's fun or not doesn't take that long.

Not for an RPG. 10 hours in The Witcher is what, the first chapter? Every professional game review should require that the game be completed. If the game hasn't been completed, it should be a first impression, not a review. Luckily, I don't actually rely on reviews but if I did, I'd want to be sure that the reviewer had actually played through the whole game.

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40.
 
Re: No subject
Dec 3, 2007, 15:56
40.
Re: No subject Dec 3, 2007, 15:56
Dec 3, 2007, 15:56
 
Dagok, I'm sorry to get you derailed there. I thought Tumbler and I were discussing the recent similar issue with an Escapist review of The Witcher. But after reading his last sentence I think I lost him along the way also. Forgive me or us should I say.

I read the LameSpot review of K&L and felt it was much better written then some. And it's a shame an honest reviewer met with the axe over it. Not to mention his editor.


This comment was edited on Dec 3, 15:57.
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