Rewiews ? i no longer trust "Positive Reviews" only negative, am i living in a paralell universe ?

RedBackDragon

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You see after the colonial marines saga ,mass effect... the torrential flood of garbage on steam i just cant read or trust ANY good reviews i just straight up go for the bad ones and decide if i want to bother with a game purely off of the bad reviews....and on steam i allways go straight to the "only negative" tab and if there are no bad reviews i wont even buy it even if theres a prety good chance that its good.

its strange i know but i look at the description of a game and then boom right on to bad reviews of it... and if it doesnt appear broken or just garbage from that ill get it

Is anybody else experiencing this or is it just me being a right weirdo ?>
 

Keoul

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It's not weird but I think you just need to find more reliable sources.
I do the same thing kinda, jump straight to the negative reviews to see whats wrong with the game. If there aren't that many then that just means it's a pretty good game.
 

Sandernista

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I still trust positive reviews, but I noticed something odd recently. When looking for a new book on Goodreads, I automatically skip to poor reviews, I think it's because if there is something some people cannot overlook it may bug me as well and I only have so much time for reading.
 

Smooth Operator

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Well you have gone to the other extreme then, which isn't that good of an idea.
But the logic is sound, if you actually want to know the full ups and downs of a game you need to hear both sides of the story, and professional positive reviews are mostly just sales pitches because at the end of the day their paycheck relies on publishers, so it does take that extra negative input to balance thing out.
 

drednoahl

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It's rare I bother reading reviews these days and when I do I don't trust them and like the OP generally look for negative reviews. I've had to be careful for years because I've often backed the wrong horse in choice of console/computer, and specialised press is often over-enthusiastic when reviewing exclusives which has led to disappointment. I do think reviewing has got better in recent years with sites like this one and youtube, but it's still hard to find someone I can trust; I like Jim for example, but there are some things he really likes that I don't.

I stopped buying all printed gaming media after one review was obviously "bought" and I've had virtually no trust in reviews since then. I've had an off/on relationship with companies such as Activision and EA for over thirty years which I think is longer than most relationships last. The thing is I've barely anything positive to say about these companies after all this time (if I could I'd have an injunction against EA to stay well away from me) and I've come to be highly suspicious of reviews full of praise for their products because the bigger publishers have let me down more times than any company in any other sphere of business. In my time on this planet, publishers have gone from bad to worse and beyond; their attempts to buy consumer trust through biasing reviews has never gone well and I doubt it ever will.

Cynicism and negative attitudes are born from being lied to (I'm very much against parents who lie about crap like santa to their children; a cynical child usually rebels in almost every conceivable way and why not - if you can't trust your parents who can you trust?) A reviewer speaks from a position of authority like a parent, teacher or government official and as such should expect a backlash if they aren't being truthful.
 

Ubiquitous Duck

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It depends on what you are buying.

If it is early access, it would merit looking at how many people are saying it is unfit for purpose currently. It may be great fun, but if a good number of people are saying there are game-breaking problems, it could be an idea to steer clear, at least for a while.

I do the same on Amazon, see what warrants the one star reviews, as you can often find gems in there. This doesn't just have to refer to games.

But I'd still use positive reviews. Because a general opinion of positivity towards the game gives a good idea of whether most people are enjoying it or not and also valuing the positive opinions of people you know have a similar opinion to you. There are friends I have that I know when they like a certain type of game that the chances are, I will too, but I also know what games I have no chance of enjoying, regardless of their reception.

Also, what's wrong with Mass Effect? I'd say this deserves the positive reviews it has. Incredible series. Loved it.
 

UniversalRonin

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I don't really read reviews. I prefer to search for gameplay videos. Does this look like something I'd enjoy playing after listening to someone describing the experience while I see how they're playing it?
 

Mangod

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LordJedi86 said:
I don't really read reviews. I prefer to search for gameplay videos. Does this look like something I'd enjoy playing after listening to someone describing the experience while I see how they're playing it?
This is probably the best way to learn about a game before buying it; find a first impressions video (Cynical Brit, hint hint), let's play or similar, because those can at least be counted on to show how the game looks and plays before you take a swing at it yourself.

They're not always perfect, of course, but it feels more honest than traditional gaming news, which seem increasingly similar to the PR department.
 

AntiChri5

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Listening to only negative reviews is as stupid as listening to only positive ones. Read both, compare them, then read some middle of the road ones. Then make a decision whether or not a game has what you are looking for.
Ubiquitous Duck said:
Also, what's wrong with Mass Effect? I'd say this deserves the positive reviews it has. Incredible series. Loved it.
People are still weeping about the ending.
 

masticina

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I kind read the content of the review. Yup yes I see that it gets an 9 out of 10 but does that matter. What matters is that the game is a game I would play. You could give a shooter a 10/10, okay, right, I don't do shooters.

Also besides reading I hunt down gameplay videos. Actual gameplay videos by actual youtubers. Does it looks decent? Does it looks fun?

And last if there is a demo I will try it. Of course very few games get demos but lets say that playing FF XIII-3 demo was a laugh. I already had low hope and oh my did it show to be a right guess. That game did nothing for me!

In the end I have to choose what to buy, money can only be spend once after all [well you can resell your games I guess] and more important time can be spend once. So one has to decide if the game they are going to play is the right game.
 

UniversalRonin

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Mangod said:
LordJedi86 said:
I don't really read reviews. I prefer to search for gameplay videos. Does this look like something I'd enjoy playing after listening to someone describing the experience while I see how they're playing it?
This is probably the best way to learn about a game before buying it; find a first impressions video (Cynical Brit, hint hint), let's play or similar, because those can at least be counted on to show how the game looks and plays before you take a swing at it yourself.

They're not always perfect, of course, but it feels more honest than traditional gaming news, which seem increasingly similar to the PR department.
Couldn't agree more. Also it helps to find someone with similar tastes in games- Normally I find Necroscope86 to be worth listening to as far as LP'ers go- watch a video or 2 as he gets to grips with a new game and gives first impressions of it. It always amazes me that we live in such a fantastic age where mass-collaboration actually can happen, and where the web is still free (enough) to get honest opinions from people who go out in the morning and do a job like I do (or not, but you know what I mean), as opposed to working in the media and entertainments industry.
 

AntiChri5

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masticina said:
I kind read the content of the review. Yup yes I see that it gets an 9 out of 10 but does that matter. What matters is that the game is a game I would play. You could give a shooter a 10/10, okay, right, I don't do shooters.
This is, really, the important thing. Whether or not a game is right for you. People play a lot of different games in a lot of different ways for a lot of different reasons. My perfect game might not hold your interest for more then ten minutes. Doesn't amke it a bad game, just not for you. But focusing on whether or not a game is "good" is so much easier then analyzing your own tastes as well as the content of the game reviewed and making a call on whether or not you will enjoy it.
 

Maximum Bert

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I tend to take a lot of reviews with a pinch of salt but I try and get as many reviews as possible now whereas in the old days I would just go with a few I trusted.

Thats mainly because I dont trust any singular reviewer or magazine anymore especially from some really large publishers whos reviews get unanimous praise way above what the game actually amounts to and lets be honest with the huge amount of money games are these days buying good scores is not going to be that hard from those who like their money more than integrity i.e most business`s. On the flip side we then get the stupid backlash where people give it overly negative reviews to try and balance out the overly praiseworthy ones.

Not saying all reviews are untrustworthy I mean some may really dislike a game or really like it but when you see a pattern emerging with a gulf between huge negativity and huge positivity for a title you know something is not quite right somewhere.

But like I said I will try and get as many reviews as possible if its a title I am not sure on and if I get it I can then see who imo had the best review on the product and they may get carry a little more clout with me next time I am unsure.

Some reviews are just pathetic though and its quite obvious that they havent even played the game I remember reading one in a some would say respected video game magazine about DOA5 and they got the names of the fighters wrong and quite frankly covered hardly anything new about the game (i.e the changes to the mechanics) it read like a DOA4 review which it probably was just reworded, I was a bit disgusted that they were passing it off as a serious review to be honest im not sure if it was incompetence or just laziness.

Only reading the negative reviews is as pointless as only reading the positive ones your only getting one side of the story either way.
 

raeior

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I tend to do the same thing nowadays. I'm reading most of the negative reviews on Amazon for example and a few of the positive ones to get an idea what they are criticizing and then read a few of the positive ones to see what counteracts that. This only works for "non-hyped" titles so to say. Look at the Amazon page for Diablo III or something and you get a bazillion 1 star reviews because "Did not work on launch day" which isn't very helpful after so much time.

I had the same problem while searching for a new monitor. Basically every monitor had positive reviews and then a bunch of negative ones saying basically the thing is unusable crap that is too green red blue yellow black or white all at the same time and obviously badly lighted, makes strange noises and gives you headache after 5 seconds of using it. If I followed the negative reviews I would have come to the conclusion that basically all newly produced monitors are utter crap.

For most games I nowadays use either LP videos or demos (like that's going to happen). Although there was a recent example where there was a demo version which kept me from buying the game because the demo was god awful (can't remember which game it was though). TotalBiscuit was already mentioned and I usually agree with his opinions and if I don't well I can still see how the game plays out and make my own decision. He praised the new Thief but for me it was just "Oh wow this is awful".

As for print magazines. Well the scoring system is usually totally useless. Indie games getting low scores because 1/10 points in the graphics department or something..well who cares? The comments of the reviewers can be useful if you don't have reason to doubt their truthfulness. Like there was a preview of Dragon Age II in a magazine and they praised every design decision no matter how stupid. No casting times? Awesome I hate waiting! They adopted the ME dialogue system? I didn't like reading anyway! Origin system thrown over board? Nah that was stupid anway. The whole preview was written like this and to me it was "So they take everything out that made DA:O a great game..yeah sounds really....great..". They did the same thing in a preview for DA:I recently so I'm veeeery conspicuous about them being neutral on this.

So yeah only taking negative reviews into consideration is a bit too much on one side. You always have to consider stuff like hype/hate around a game which can make it quite hard to find truthful reviews. The best way seems to be to find videos of the game in action and see if you like it like many others have said in this thread already.
 

Comocat

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I like looking at negative reviews because positive reviews can be self-affirming and offer little to think about. A negative review challenges me to consider the persuasiveness of the critic and my own opinions.

On the other hand, several no-name bloggers exploit the infamy from hating something popular by giving respectable titles 1/10 scores as clickbait. In that case a negative review really doesnt offer much except taking a few minutes off my life.

I think looking at both, why the game is fun and why it is terrible is good way to get a reasonable picture of a game. In this day and age it is fairly improbably to not have a good picture of what you are buying beforehand.
 

Racecarlock

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Reading negative reviews first is a good way to start, but I think it's also a good idea to find critics you can trust who are biased towards your preferences but at the same time tougher on games than you are. Yahtzee matched this for me, but I also read jim sterling's reviews along with the angry joe show, nerd cubed, and more.

It's also a good idea to look up commentary free gameplay on your game. Just so you know what your experience will be like without someone talking into your ear the whole time.

And no, you're not in a parallel universe. Buyer beware is a very good idea at this point in time, because bought reviews and fancy marketing is everywhere. They will try to sell you a turd at every junction, so make sure you know what's shit before you go buying things. Otherwise you'll just waste money.
 

Ed130 The Vanguard

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Sep 10, 2008
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I go to TotalBiscuit for 'first impressions' and browse through the negative reviews before going to the positives.

Positive reviews themselves are not bad, taking them by themselves is. (except for reviews by the likes of IGN etc, as they tend towards paid advertisements, picked a moron who hates the games genre, or the increasingly common 'inflammatory clickbait')

Ubiquitous Duck said:
Also, what's wrong with Mass Effect? I'd say this deserves the positive reviews it has. Incredible series. Loved it.
He's referring to ME3, or rather its ending.

Lets just say The Escapist has a history with that particular part.

NameIsRobertPaulson said:
Since I was bored, I decided to count some Mass Effect related things on the Escapist, and here is the result:

There are 167 threads about Mass Effect
9404 Posts
332817 views

If each view counted for one person, and the Escapist was their country, The Escapist would be the 177th largest on the planet, just ahead of Iceland

It has been 22 days since launch, thus averaging 427 posts a day, and 92 views EVERY SECOND

None of this counts the Ending Thread on the Bioware forums, which has reached 2,023 pages, 50,575 posts and over 4 million views

The amount of money raised by Take Back Mass Effect would be enough to feed 106,000 people in Zimbabwe

Anyone still miss the Skyrim threads?
 

Lilikins

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I personally usually tend to look at a games visuals, check up a 'proper' gameplay video, usually most easily seen with LP'ers. Not to ruin the story for myself I blaze through them, skipping to random spots in the video, turning off the sound, etc. About the reviews themselves, I also tend to read the negative ones, simple because the 'negative' scores tend to be more realistic, no Im not speaking about the 0/10 scores, but more the 3/4/5 of 10. They have valid points and theres thought put into them for the most part. And seeing as the 'mini review' for alot of 10/10 games consists of 'best game evar...rarghlbrgl' ehh yeah, point taken.
Also implying the fact that atleast in my book, there is no game that deserves 10/10 besides 'maybe' (its high up there...really high) Heroes of Might and Magic 3. As spoken, my preference, seeing as I had tons of fun playing it by myself, and with friends. Where you could just lean back an evening, crack open a beer or two and go for it. Of course with the only rule being 'if you pick Necropolis...no farming skeletons.'
Besides that, some games, once again in my opinion, defo dont deserve the high scores they do. I know Im going to have an angry mob at my doorstep but nevertheless, GTA 4 got massively high review scores, so I went alone from the reviews and got it and had to put it down after an hour out of boredom. Then tried it 3 or 4 more times but just couldnt bring myself to play it because it was such a large step back from Vice City/San Andreas in my eyes. Nevertheless though it gained tons and tons of praise from everyone and seemed to be the greatest thing since sliced bread. Those who have fun with it, go knock yourself out, I wish you the best of fun with it really, it just wasnt my cup of tea.

Long story short, I, much like the OP, also go to the negative reviews first if I do read a review, not the bottom pit of 0/1 but on the flipside also not to the 9/10's rather try to position myself in the 3/4/5/6/7 area because I somehow see those reviews as more truthful and in depth about the games flaws/mistakes but also about the games good points.
 

Zhukov

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Dec 29, 2009
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I find that for every frothy fanboy praising a game to the heavens because it has his favourite name on the box, there's a resentful and bitter individual with no sense of perspective calling it the work of Satan because it had a glitchy texture somewhere. I am not inclined to trust my purchasing decisions to either sort.

Basically, what I'm saying is fuck user reviews. Fuck 'em with a rusty gardening fork.
 

shrekfan246

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May 26, 2011
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Ed130 The Vanguard said:
Statistical Snip
I'd be interested in seeing what those numbers are now, two years later, since people still won't let it go.

OT: Because Colonial Marines got such a positive critical reception, right?

I mean, if it works for you, then... good? I guess? Personally, I'd rather see all sides of a story before making a decision one way or the other. I like to see direct gameplay of video games so I can judge for myself whether or not it seems interesting to me, and I like to hear commentary about both the good and bad.