Expanding the family tree!

Every now and then the internet helps us to find family members and lost friends. We rediscovered Miss Bea Havin from 90s game magazine Playstation Pro and we even found our sister. Our real sister not the one we made up . And today we may have found one of our cousins "droolingmaniac". We found him commenting on some bullshit post over at Game Daily? (Who? The site looks like IGN and reads like joystiq so were not even linking it). Anyway the article is about reviewers "seven deadly sins" but the author of the post forgets that writing a review isn't some kind of herculean task. Anyone can do it. Few can do it well. Our cousin, who we will refer to as "drool" put him in his place with this lovely comment:

"This piece of superficial nonsense doesn't inspire confidence in the gaming press. So much of it points to the author's inability to follow his own advice. He's conscious of some of his transgressions, but at the same time his own recommendations often display a sheer lack of judgment when it comes to evaluating the criteria he proposes. For example, in "Forgiveness," he suggests it's the job o*****ame reviewer to be "crotchety nit-pickers." In the very same paragraph, he writes that he finds the flaws in Grand Theft Auto IV to be "inconsequential and beneath mention," an absurd, defensive posture that's out of touch with the game's many, many shortcomings. He *forgave* a plethora of serious design flaws - clunky controls, save structure that forces boring repetition, and a broken cover system, among others - because of what? Because the game had an impressive depiction of a city? Because other aspects of the game were fun? Is his proposal that reviewers should nit-pick, but then reason that their own nit-picks are beneath mention? Why bother nit-picking if that's the case? Similarly, how can the author make a call for exciting, involving reviews with top-shelf writing quality when his own article is steeped in cliche and fluff? "Seven Deadly Sins of X" is . "Score like you mean it." "Afloat in a sea of hype." "Doses of PR and Internet enthusiasm in my bloodstream." "Life's too short to doubt your feelings." The author is alternately insultingly trite and hopelessly lacking in apt analogies. Can we expect an engaging review from this person? It's difficult to imagine. Is he representative of his peers' writing aptitudes? That remains to be seen, but I can't say that the majority of game reviews I read are any better. Even putting aside his poor use of writing as a form, his lack of logical support for his arguments is apalling. "Make your arguments and back them up," he demands of his fellow members of the gaming enthusiast press. Yet in the same article, he argues that someone giving a review that's "out of step" with the rest of the press means "so much more" precisely because they're in disagreement with the others. That argument has no logical basis. An opinion has no more meaning just because it's contrarian. The review scores would mean "so much more" if they dared to give the game a score it deserved when everyone else would not. Because they would have journalistic integrity. But the author explicitly states he doesn't care whether it's a review that's more honest than all the rest or one that's simply "a feeble grab for attention." The author is pounding his shoe on the table, calling for reviewers to go out and have an opinion. I have news for him. Having an opinion isn't going to rescue a profession full of gaming-man-children-turned-pseudo-journalists. Maybe someone out there should be calling for reviewers to have *honest* opinions. This one could take or leave the "honesty" part. Speaking of things that aren't going to save gaming journalism, there's nothing in this article that's going to repair its problems. How incredibly out of touch it is for the author to call for reviews that "tell a story" and aren't "totally thorough," and expect his article to be relevant. These aren't seven deadly sins of game reviews. Half of them are just things that make game journalists ****** writers. That's not the actual important problem with game journalists. The problem is that they review games like kids with game consoles instead of like professionals. What are their real deadly sins? Not actually studying journalism. Having no structural division between their department and their outfit's bizdev department. Accepting advertising money from the same industry they critique. Becoming "fans" of particular game franchises or companies and losing objectivity. Giving every new AAA title of the last 3 months a perfect score and believing that that shows they've evolved in their thinking and now finally recognize art and industrial revolution when they see it, while simultaneously failing to evaluate those titles on anything but the most superfluous level, and not taking them to task for their pacing, writing, or craft (GTA IV's story is predictable and hackneyed? Who cares? MGS4 constantly interrupts gameplay with insipid dialogue? Big deal!) the way a film critic would for his medium. Equating high production values with artistic substance. Being so completely clueless as to think that their industry's problem is a need for a bill of rights, or not using enough of the "universe of adjectives." There's your problem. How about you get together and get all that figured out. Start building up an industry of professionals instead of fans. Then you can take some extension school English classes."

Tl;dr but hey! He is family after all. Welcome to the clan drools.

Comments

That Girl said…
Yey!
Richie! said…
:D

Hey sis
Anonymous said…
sis?
Werent That Guys saying they were thinking of spilling one over the knuckle at that girl?

Does that make it incest?

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