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The Pub at MMORPG.COM  » Metacritic scores not accurate or reliable for mmo's or other games? Evidence says otherwise.

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52 posts found
  dotdotdash

Apprentice Member

Joined: 6/01/11
Posts: 343

4/27/13 1:54:57 PM#21

The problem with this discussion is that it eventually boils down to an opinion, one that you invariably had even before you attempted to justify it.

If you believe that Metacritic works, then you will use examples of it working to demonstrate why it works. You will also omit the ones that do not help demonstrate the point (ala the OP).

If you believe that Metacritic does not work, then you will demonstrate the point via the precise same process with differing variables.

My opinion is this:

Metacritic is not consensus, and it does not try to be. It is not attempting to reflect YOUR opinion, but the opinions - as influenced by the precise same factors (eg. money) as the individual's opinion - of the largest subsection of humanity that it can.

Ergo, It is not Metacritic that is wrong, but.... us....

*has an existential crisis and puffs into a cloud of smoke*

  User Deleted
4/27/13 2:01:21 PM#22
Originally posted by Vannor

Going purely off Dragon Age 1 + 2, sure.. DA1 was better than 2 imo but is 2 really worth 'that' low a score? 4.2?.. no way. I mean, look at how many 1's and 0's there are straight away from DA2. It's just stupid. 1? Like it's the worst game ever made? Madness. It wasn't as good as people wanted it to be, fine.. but a 1...?

 Yep and thats where the problem lies. People who are annoyed at a game that didnt live up to expectations give stupidly low scores, or fans give overly high scores to counter that. It doesnt work. Anyone could objectively look at DA2 and see that it doesnt deserve 4.2. Its a better than average game. Does it live up to DA1? No not to me, but that doesnt make it sub par in general.

  Torvaldr

Elite Member

Joined: 6/10/09
Posts: 5508

4/27/13 3:16:02 PM#23
I don't care if metacritic (which I never read anyway) or any other site is completely accurate.  I don't base my opinions and interests on what everyone else likes.  This is especially true since I seem to be out of touch with the rest of the gamer community and their interests.  I don't want to parrot the interests of others.  I want to experience, think, and decide for myself what I like.

I think a mind wipe so people could play an mmo like it was their first time again, would be easier to build than a new mmo people here would actually like. - DamonVile

  lizardbones

Elite Member

Joined: 6/11/08
Posts: 10376

I've become dependent upon spell check. My apologies for stupid grammatical errors.

4/27/13 4:20:32 PM#24

Meta Scores aren't 'accurate'. They can give a relative measure of how well a game will sell though. Higher meta scores means more sales. Lower meta scores means lower sales. It's not something that's measurable though. A game with a meta score of 32 won't sell a particular number of copies...it'll just sell at the lower end of what it could possibly sell.

** ** **

I think you also need to look at meta scores and player scores separately. A game like TSW has a low meta score, but a high player score. It was a commercial flop, but the players who bought it tended to like it. The opposite would be SWToR where it got a high meta score, but a low player score. It was still a commercial flop, but it sold a LOT of copies and made a LOT more money than TSW, even though TSW is arguably a better game according to players.

For every large, complex problem, there is a simple, clear solution that also happens to be absolutely wrong.

  Aerowyn

Novice Member

Joined: 2/20/12
Posts: 7969

4/27/13 4:27:57 PM#25
overall user score on metacritic is pretty accurate(within a point or 2 out of 10) on how I would rate about 90% of the games i check on there so for me its usefull obviously others mileage will vary on this

I angered the clerk in a clothing shop today. She asked me what size I was and I said actual, because I am not to scale. I like vending machines 'cause snacks are better when they fall. If I buy a candy bar at a store, oftentimes, I will drop it... so that it achieves its maximum flavor potential. --Mitch Hedberg

  Golelorn

Advanced Member

Joined: 4/23/03
Posts: 1054

4/27/13 4:33:11 PM#26
I find myself normally agreeing with the senitment, if not the score. DA2 was a huge letdown for me, but hard to agree it was a 4.2. More like a 7.
  Isawa

Apprentice Member

Joined: 6/20/08
Posts: 1066

4/27/13 4:41:04 PM#27

Metacritic scores not accurate or reliable for mmo's or other games? Evidence says otherwise.

So you're trying to say the scores are accurate if the game is good or not in relation to your opinion? And since they add up for your opinion, that is considered evidence? That is still considered an opinion haha.

What about subscription numbers? If you look at user opinion on WoW compared to other MMOs, it isnt' the greatest but in other people's opinions it must be. However, it has far more players, even with a lower rating, so just because the User Rating is low - apparently doesn't keep it from bein extremely successful.

Same goes for box sales, look at Diablo 3 for that. User score says it's no good, but is that "accurate or reliable" for sales or just how people think/feel the game is. Most of it is feeling, with some thinking involved :p

Good or bad is just an opinion, and it may be accurate for some, but not all - even with the average, which I may agree with on most of them :) Evidence is an entirely different matter.

  DocBrody

Advanced Member

Joined: 4/24/13
Posts: 1379

4/27/13 4:47:23 PM#28

Hello,

in my humble opionion metacritic and other user scores are way more reliable than any review by ONE journalist.

The number shows you "the balance of love and hate".

If 80 people vote "10" and madly love the game, and 20 people vote "0" and hate/bash the game, it would still be a solid 80%

Of course the non extremists will always vote in the "2-9" range and balance it out even more.

(Those scores are only reliable if there are lots of votes though)

What does a 80% metacritic score tell me? It tells me," there is a 80% chance that I will like the game". But I might end up being in the 20% group because I am a special snowflake.

Cheers

Doc B

  Sulaa

Novice Member

Joined: 7/13/11
Posts: 830

4/27/13 5:15:20 PM#29

  • Dragon Age 1: (Slightly disagree with user rating) Game was step in right direction and in some way resembled BG. Althrough amount of streamlining and casualization, less frreedom than in BG, retarded companions relation system and while combat was ok, game had too much of it. It seemed like consicious decision to imput so much filler combat - it made game unbearable at one point.   My score - 6,5
  • Dragon Age 2: (Agree) Game was trash. Advertised as AAA game - when it screamed cheap cash grab. Another part of series described as 'spiritual succesor to BG' while in reality it had little in common.  Idiotic amount of slashery combat, cheesy relations & dialogues in game, dialogue wheel idea, 'press a button something awesome has to happen' (wtf?). Just bad. My score - 3.0.  Had it been very clear descibed as action game with some rpg elements and as a spinoff - instead of rpg game then it would get 5.0 from me.
  • Sim City: (Agree)  Forcing playing on game servers only + 'advertisement' limited buildings have clear adcantage + game fundamental mechanbics & AI broken. My score - 3.0
  • SWTOR: (Agree)  Not an virtual world at all,  does not feel like mmorpg. Very linear, streamlined into oblivion, uninspired, bad crafting, bad races, game does not offer anything besides voice over & cutscenes. Very "thin" game and again - should not be advertised&classified as mmoprg.  My score 4.5
  • GW2: (Disagree) Feel like several smaller-games put into one-interface. Too streamlined, non-consequental, get boring very fast.  Overrated. Have to agree though - that for people that like this game underlying concept - it's propably a good product.  Similar like with Defiance.   My score - 6.0
  • TSW: (Disagree)  Overrated. Similar faults like in Swtor case.  Better 'dialogues&atmosphere' than in Swtor, but that's it.  My score 5.0
  • Defiance: (Agree)  Technically solid and it's good that it spearhead PVE MMO Shooter/ MMOTPS genre,  hopefully it takes players that like that sort of gameplay off MMORPG genre.  Only really objective complain is tawdry dialogues and cheesy story, other than that - just not my type of game, but definately it is solid and peopel who like MMOTPS idea should be happy I think.    My score 6.0
  • RIFT: (Agree)  Similar like Defiance.  Even more solid technically than Defiance, superb support, great businesss model, but super generic world and totally not my type game. Add-ons, LFG, smallish world, huge focus on instances - WoW 2.0.   Another mmorpg that does not feel like an mmorpg and that's why does not really deserve subsciption & playing with all that mmo has to bring  and could be as good or maybe better as a lobby game with shared cities and co-op instanced questing zones.  Even though for first three positive things I mentioned - I wanted to like it- I ultimatelly could not.  My score 6.5, maybe 7.0. That high becauxe while I did not like game concept, Trion definatlly tried and tries to make it great product.

Concluding . User score is not a superbkly accurate thing, but it's more accurate than IGN and many other big western / USA gaming sites.

  Sulaa

Novice Member

Joined: 7/13/11
Posts: 830

4/27/13 5:30:40 PM#30
Originally posted by evilastro
Originally posted by Vannor

Going purely off Dragon Age 1 + 2, sure.. DA1 was better than 2 imo but is 2 really worth 'that' low a score? 4.2?.. no way. I mean, look at how many 1's and 0's there are straight away from DA2. It's just stupid. 1? Like it's the worst game ever made? Madness. It wasn't as good as people wanted it to be, fine.. but a 1...?

 Yep and thats where the problem lies. People who are annoyed at a game that didnt live up to expectations give stupidly low scores, or fans give overly high scores to counter that. It doesnt work. Anyone could objectively look at DA2 and see that it doesnt deserve 4.2. Its a better than average game. Does it live up to DA1? No not to me, but that doesnt make it sub par in general.

I disagre. DA2 was really sub-par game.  Really I had to literally force myself to play  to give it a chance before I uninstalled it in disgust.

  Axehilt

Novice Member

Joined: 5/09/09
Posts: 7213

4/27/13 6:37:11 PM#31
Originally posted by Sulaa

Concluding . User score is not a superbkly accurate thing, but it's more accurate than IGN and many other big western / USA gaming sites.

Yeah, I guess so.  As long as "accuracy" here simply means whether we agree with the mob.  A few others in the thread have used the terms "right" and "wrong", which definitely doesn't apply to opinions about subjective things.

Really what bothered me wasn't having a different opinion from the mob.  That's expected.

No, what bothered me is the hyper-fixation the mob has on single failure points.  Games which are entirely amazing and deserve 9.0 or better, but whose solitary failure point causes them to get a 1.9.  This is bad for a few reasons:

  1. 99% of the game is completely awesome, and the dev team absolutely deserves credit for their accomplishment.
  2. Players who want to enjoy the game will have their enjoyment lessened by the idea that a vast sea of people is hyper-fixated on that one failure point.  This is sort of vague, and I lack the formalized pyschological/sociological education to give it a proper term, but if you have a favorite movie and someone you respect insults that movie as being terrible, it has a certain impact and you can't ever quite ignore the criticism, even though you still like the movie. (TLDR version: when the mob reviews something poorly, it can literally reduce the fun you have in that game.)
  3. And finally, the bad review will prevent some players from even trying the game -- they'll miss out on an experience which they may have found completely enjoyable.
  Purutzil

Elite Member

Joined: 10/02/11
Posts: 2796

The Critical Hit Pretzel!

4/27/13 6:40:36 PM#32
I'l have to disagree considering NO SCORE is ever a good way to judge a game. Scores do not accurately give a picture of a game.
  Sulaa

Novice Member

Joined: 7/13/11
Posts: 830

4/27/13 7:02:55 PM#33
Originally posted by Axehilt
Originally posted by Sulaa

Concluding . User score is not a superbkly accurate thing, but it's more accurate than IGN and many other big western / USA gaming sites.

Yeah, I guess so.  As long as "accuracy" here simply means whether we agree with the mob.  A few others in the thread have used the terms "right" and "wrong", which definitely doesn't apply to opinions about subjective things.

Really what bothered me wasn't having a different opinion from the mob.  That's expected.

No, what bothered me is the hyper-fixation the mob has on single failure points.  Games which are entirely amazing and deserve 9.0 or better, but whose solitary failure point causes them to get a 1.9.  This is bad for a few reasons:

  1. 99% of the game is completely awesome, and the dev team absolutely deserves credit for their accomplishment.
  2. Players who want to enjoy the game will have their enjoyment lessened by the idea that a vast sea of people is hyper-fixated on that one failure point.  This is sort of vague, and I lack the formalized pyschological/sociological education to give it a proper term, but if you have a favorite movie and someone you respect insults that movie as being terrible, it has a certain impact and you can't ever quite ignore the criticism, even though you still like the movie. (TLDR version: when the mob reviews something poorly, it can literally reduce the fun you have in that game.)
  3. And finally, the bad review will prevent some players from even trying the game -- they'll miss out on an experience which they may have found completely enjoyable.

Game scorings were evolving for a long time into higher and higher scores.  In 90's 7/10 was good score, now it's considered average,  9/10 was very rare 10/10 almost unheard of.  Now 9/10 is expected.    It's nothing surprising = it's business after all.   Thing is that and because of higher and higher hype and huge marketting campaign had lead to polarization and strong negative scoring as well.   

I would not over-fixate on 'over-fixation' point you bring. People usually desciribe few things whenever they score negative or positive.   This is hardly true only for negative poins of a game. 

Mob thing you mentioned.  Go to other scoring communities and you'll have diffrent scores.  It does not have anything to do with 'miniority vs majority' - popular games do get smashed and other popular games do get praised, similar with lesss popualr games.  It's about whenever you agree with current group of users using metarcritic or not.

Many of big gaming sites have their user score system as well - and there are many with user scores diffrent from metacriti user scores.  I am sure you'll find a popular user vote site that'll correspond with your personal opinion more.

  LogicLester

Apprentice Member

Joined: 3/30/13
Posts: 67

4/27/13 7:37:02 PM#34
Originally posted by Margulis

So I see people bash a lot on Metacritic and how you can't trust any score on there because people post ridiculous scores all the time (10's and 0's), so forth and so on.  And I have seen this myself in the individual user reviews.  But I've got to tell you, I've yet to see a single AVERAGED USER REVIEW score for any game on that site that I didn't think was pretty much right on the money.  Sure the averaged critic review score can be bogus at times, especially when you see games like Dragon Age 2 or Sim City with super high scores, but that's not Metacritic's fault, they are just averaging the stupid professional reviewers scores.  So again, where is the incredible innacuracy with the USER REVIEWS if we look at the weighted average?  I don't see it.  Let's take a look at some examples.

 

Dragon Age 1

http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/dragon-age-origins

Dragon Age 2

http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/dragon-age-ii

Simcity:

http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/simcity

Star Wars the Old Republic

http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/star-wars-the-old-republic

Guild Wars 2

http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/guild-wars-2

The Secret World

http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/the-secret-world

Mass Effect

http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/mass-effect

Mass Effect 3

http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/mass-effect-3

Defiance

http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/defiance

Final Fantasy XIV

http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/final-fantasy-xiv-online

Rift

http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/rift

 

I could post more and more.  And the only 2 games out of those that I play are Defiance and The Secret World, and I still would say objectively I think every one of those AVERAGED USER REVIEWS are completely accurate.  So why all the metacritic hate?  Because a few fanbois and haters like to give 0's and 10's that are ridiculous?  Looks like they must balance themselves out to me, because the end result looks pretty dead on from anything I've seen.

 

Yeah....  unless SimCity murdered your family there is no way in the world it deserves a 1.9.  I get it, people hate unnecessary anti-pirating measures, especially when the publisher claims the obvious anti-pirating hoops aren't anti-pirating hoops, they're a feature!  But the game is fully playable, and it's certainly arguable that it's either as good or better than previous SimCIty games.

 

The ratings of other divisive games are also ridiculous.  For example, the original World of Warcraft is a 6.8, The Secret World is an 8.2.  Come on.  One sold millions of copies and retained many of those subscriptions.  The other barely got 200k sales and lost enough subs that they went f2p less than a year after launch.  Can you tell which by the ratings?

 

Metacritic and sites like it are useful because they aggregate reviews.  The averages of the ratings of those reviews are meaningless though.  Why?  Because even just a single rating is meaningless if you didn't READ the review to see if you agree with how they reached that rating in the first place.

 

Please don't try to pretend the numbers are evidence of anything more than what they are, that people are lazy even when trying to be frugal/seeking validation.

 

  Margulis

Advanced Member

Joined: 12/14/08
Posts: 1643

 
OP  4/27/13 8:15:33 PM#35
Originally posted by JimmyYO
At first I thought OP was trolling when he posted the Dragon Age 2 score but the rest are pretty much dead on. The problem is you're cherry picking the accurate ones and claiming it's legit based off the few that are correct. The broken clock argument basically.

I posted mmo's and ones that have been controversial that come to mind.  Please by all means post links to show me the ones you think are totally inaccurate.

  Eir_S

Advanced Member

Joined: 8/07/11
Posts: 4665

GW2 socialist.

4/27/13 8:22:38 PM#36

I don't even look at user scores anymore after agreeing with so many critics.  I look at the user scores and see piles of people rating either 0 or 10 and saying things like "DIS GAME IZ BETTAR THEN WOW" or "DIS GAME SUX, AND IS FOR NOOBS AND BABIES".  I'm not surprised at half of the averages because of this.

I don't agree with DA:O being a 91 though.  Terribly boring game.  Luckily, I got it for free.

  Axehilt

Novice Member

Joined: 5/09/09
Posts: 7213

4/27/13 8:24:41 PM#37
Originally posted by Sulaa

Game scorings were evolving for a long time into higher and higher scores.  In 90's 7/10 was good score, now it's considered average,  9/10 was very rare 10/10 almost unheard of.  Now 9/10 is expected.    It's nothing surprising = it's business after all.   Thing is that and because of higher and higher hype and huge marketting campaign had lead to polarization and strong negative scoring as well.   

I would not over-fixate on 'over-fixation' point you bring. People usually desciribe few things whenever they score negative or positive.   This is hardly true only for negative poins of a game. 

Mob thing you mentioned.  Go to other scoring communities and you'll have diffrent scores.  It does not have anything to do with 'miniority vs majority' - popular games do get smashed and other popular games do get praised, similar with lesss popualr games.  It's about whenever you agree with current group of users using metarcritic or not.

I dunno, in the late 80s and early 90s one of the very first criticisms I had was 5 wasn't "average" by any stretch, and that it was mostly just 8s and 9s.  Doesn't really seem that different from nowadays.

My concerns about the review systems aren't for myself.  I buy all sorts of games, and hardly give reviews a passing glance; I think perhaps 1-in-20 games I will check a review or metacritic score for.

My concerns are more for players who haven't figured out that reviews are mostly meaningless.  I'm concerned that companies like Maxis put out a fantastic product and that due to one tiny slip-up the community hyper-fixates on they actually see hundreds of thousands of fewer sales because of poor reviews.  You're right that it's not just an issue with negative reviews, and that reviews can also be abnormally positive (Bioshock Infinite was a great game, but the Metacritic rating puts it noticeably higher than it really deserves.  Honestly, a few well-placed negative critiques of the ending to Bioshock Infinite could've had a drastic impact on the scores it received, considering the whole ME3 debacle.)

  nariusseldon

Elite Member

Joined: 12/21/07
Posts: 19124

4/27/13 8:27:35 PM#38
Originally posted by Brenelael

The only way you are going to know if a game is what you personally consider good is to try it yourself. If you let Metacritic or anyone else for that matter determine your game purchases you may miss out on some games that got lower scores but you personally may like a lot. Don't let a low score anywhere deter you from trying a game you personally think looks interesting.

 

While everyone should make up their own mind, reviews give good information. Don't look at the number. Read the facts & impression.

If a reviewer said the game a good variety of terrain, and the world is big .. that is probably true. And then you can decide if you like those facts about the game or not.

  nariusseldon

Elite Member

Joined: 12/21/07
Posts: 19124

4/27/13 8:32:25 PM#39
Originally posted by Axehilt

My concerns are more for players who haven't figured out that reviews are mostly meaningless.  I'm concerned that companies like Maxis put out a fantastic product and that due to one tiny slip-up the community hyper-fixates on they actually see hundreds of thousands of fewer sales because of poor reviews.  You're right that it's not just an issue with negative reviews, and that reviews can also be abnormally positive (Bioshock Infinite was a great game, but the Metacritic rating puts it noticeably higher than it really deserves.  Honestly, a few well-placed negative critiques of the ending to Bioshock Infinite could've had a drastic impact on the scores it received, considering the whole ME3 debacle.)

Well, how can reviews be "meaningless" when they drive the market? They mean "success" or "failure". In fact, many devs have their bonuses tied to metacritics score.

If you mean they are subjective, and not always consistent with your own view .. then it is true. But certainly reviews mean a lot ... in reputation .. and often in real cash for devs.

And in the case of Bioshock, i do agree with the review. I think it is the best FPS produced for quite a while, and i like the ending. Sometimes you agree with reviews, sometimes you don't.

 

  Eir_S

Advanced Member

Joined: 8/07/11
Posts: 4665

GW2 socialist.

4/27/13 8:32:43 PM#40
Originally posted by nariusseldon
Originally posted by Brenelael

The only way you are going to know if a game is what you personally consider good is to try it yourself. If you let Metacritic or anyone else for that matter determine your game purchases you may miss out on some games that got lower scores but you personally may like a lot. Don't let a low score anywhere deter you from trying a game you personally think looks interesting.

 

While everyone should make up their own mind, reviews give good information. Don't look at the number. Read the facts & impression.

Don't JUST read the facts and impressions, but (referring to user scores if you have no other choice than to go by them) also what the user is comparing them to.  I've noticed that much of the time, professional critics give games a solid playthrough and then base their scores on how much they enjoyed the game, not how it compares to every other game in the series, or worse, the genre.  There have been people giving consistently low scores in the user section for years simply because of that one game they played back in the MMO stone ages that they never quite got over. 

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