How do you score the games in your reviews?
Our scale goes from 1-10, with 10 being the best possible score. We consider the scale to be academic, which is to say 7 is an average score (or a C). Anything five or below is considered a failure. The overall score is a simple average of the eight scores our reviewer gives in whole numbers. Here is a rough legend of what our scores mean:
- 9.0 to 10.0: You could buy the product on this aspect alone.
- 8.0 to 8.9: Above average.
- 7.0 to 7.9: Average.
- 6.0 to 6.9: Below-average, but not a game breaker.
- 5.0 to 5.9: Poorly done, but not unusable.
- 1.0 to 4.9: Absolutely terrible, maybe even unplayable.
Typically, our reviews come out a bit later than most sites. This is because our reviewers spend a minimum of three weeks with the product (post-launch) to properly review all aspects of the product.
Additionally, we attempt to re-review most products on a yearly basis, as well as each expansion they release. The most recent full review is used by our system for the overall score listed on the website.
Below are the main questions our reviewers ask when they score the game.
- Community: How helpful and nice were the players who populate the world? Did they have to leave the game itself and seek help online or could they meet all of their needs in the gameworld itself?
- Customer Service: This is usually scored with a combination of first hand experience and research within the community to offset any preferential treatment a reviewer may receive.
- Fun: The simplest category of all asks only whether the reviewer enjoyed themselves or if they felt that the game was unsuited to their specific play style, could they see others enjoying themselves?
- Graphics: Compared to other games, how do the visuals stack up? This is not a purely technical score, but also considers overall art direction, consistency, themes and animations.
- Performance / Lag: This score considers both frame rate on an average PC and latency issues on a typical internet connection. In addition to the game itself, this score also takes into account the availability and speed of the patcher.
- Role Playing: Another combination category. This category considers not only whether the community is conducive to in-character actions, but also if the game mechanics and features support it (emotes, character customization, etc.).
- Sound: When evaluating a game’s sound, the reviewer takes into account the quality and timing of individual sounds, as well as the game's music.
- Value: Relative to how much the game costs (off the shelf and per month), how good is it? For example, a boring, yet solid AAA title that costs $50 off the shelf and $15 a month would score much lower than an equally boring indy title that is free to download and costs only $9 per month.
In the end, our reviews are written by real people and due to staff turnover and the passage of time, some of our older reviews may even have been written under different guidelines. We try our best to maintain a consistent line, but there is always room for human error. If you disagree with a score, we encourage you to let us know on our forums or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. And as always, you can also cast your own votes for each game on their rating meter in each individual profile.