Does Price Matter in a Game Review?

August 15, 2011 -

The latest edition of Jumping The Shark (the official podcast for GameShark.com) tackles game pricing and if it should affect how a game reviewer evaluates a particular game. On the one side of the argument are those that think the price of a game matters and on the other are those that believe it should have an impact on how a game is scored.

Personally, I believe the value of a game is found (or not found, as the case may be) in its overall presentation and has nothing to do with how much it costs. Obviously a lot of people disagree, but some good points are made for both sides of this long-standing argument among reviewers in this podcast.

You can catch it here directly, or check out the official site here.

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Comments

Re: Does Price Matter in a Game Review?

Personally I think considering price into a game rating is a bad idea, but I think that a review that gives it's professional opinion on whether it is worth the price point is useful. I see a rating system such as this:

Highest to lowest:

Buy it new

Wait for it to go on sale

Rent it

Borrow it

Don't bother/It's broken

-Greevar

"Paste superficially profound, but utterly meaningless quotation here."

Re: Does Price Matter in a Game Review?

Should it affect the review? Beyond a blurb about the price being worth the look, no. It by no means should affect the final judgment of the game (aka "this game was really well crafted but because it's five dollars more than I care for I'm going to drop my opinion of it") as that's a judgment that's in the eyes of the consumer. I've seen some games that I felt were a steal at what I paid for while other people wouldn't't pay even close to what I did for the same title. It's subjective and a review should cover quality of the game, not perceived worth.

Re: Does Price Matter in a Game Review?

Price definitely affects my overall opinion of a game.  I'd like to think I could evaluate the game's quality without cost being a factor but whenever I end up paying "full price" for what is clearly a budget game, it really just ticks me off. 

Re: Does Price Matter in a Game Review?

The real question is do we need game reviewers telling us what our money is worth. The answer is no. Just review the game and we'll figure out if it's worth our money. 

Re: Does Price Matter in a Game Review?

A friend of mine does say "if it felt worth it to you, it was".

Re: Does Price Matter in a Game Review?

"On the one side of the argument are those that think the price of a game matters and on the other are those that believe it should have an impact on how a game is scored."

So, the people who think it matters, vs. the people who think it matters?  That ought to be a short debate.  ;)

Re: Does Price Matter in a Game Review?

Price matters to an extent, but it should not affect the scoring of a game.

Re: Does Price Matter in a Game Review?

I think whether price matters is the wrong question.

There are all sorts of things you could ask about a game. What's the difference between a 75 that's a magnificent endeavor but almost unplayable due to bugs, a 75 that works well but isn't hugely inspired, a 75 that plays well but is drowning in excruciatingly questionable ideology couched in pure jingoism, a 75 that's good but has only niche appeal... and a 75 that's good but too expensive?

There are already so many factors that impact the score that you can't really tell anything from it.

Re: Does Price Matter in a Game Review?

As a journalist, myself, I don't let the price of a game affect my review of it. A good game is a good game, and a bad game is a bad game, regardless.

On the other hand, however, I also believe that some games may or may not be worth buying at certain price points.

I believe a good example would be Venetica. It's not really a great game, but it's not horrible, either. It released at $40, but I personally wouldn't pay that much for it. If someone were to offer it for $10-15, then it's definitely playable.

Other examples would be Duke Nukem Forever, Chaos Legion, and Brink. All of them fit in the "Not quite perfect but still playable, and enjoyable" category, and people would be more inclined to buy them and give them chances at lower price points.

Long story short, price point shouldn't affect whether a game is good or bad, but it definitely factors into the enjoyability, especially for those who don't use services like Gamefly or Blockbuster.

Re: Does Price Matter in a Game Review?

This is basically exactly where I fall.  If the review score is supposed to reflect the quality of the game, then price shouldn't impact it.  However, the simple fact is that price does impact a game's overall value.  This is a combination of the quality of the game and the price point.  As a reviewer, I would say something like "This game is a 75, but the value for $60 just isn't there.  If this was a $20 game, then go for it."

 
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Andrew EisenSarkeesian and Quinn continue to get harassed and attacked and so, the story stays in the headlines. If Wolfe gets swatted again, it will be in the news again.09/19/2014 - 6:56pm
Andrew EisenYou mean Wesley Wolfe? The swatting appeared to be over his DMCA takedown, not due to his color or gender.09/19/2014 - 6:53pm
ConsterSo Sleaker, what's the sand like?09/19/2014 - 6:53pm
quiknkold@CraigR. Spreading Misandry is not going to kill Misogyny. Its just going to fuel it. half the people supporting that arguement are mysoginists themselves. They just dont know it.09/19/2014 - 6:51pm
Sleaker@CraigR - there's nothing to get over. There's no issue here until someone does an actual study on harassment rates.09/19/2014 - 6:48pm
quiknkoldWe never said Gamers were the only victims. Yes, Anita and Zoe got a bad rap. Yes, Zoe's ex was way out of line. Do I disagree with them? Depends on the arguement. Did they deserve what happened to them? Hell Effing No.09/19/2014 - 6:48pm
Sleakerbut news outlets have a tendency to blow up and sensationalize it if the person can be desrcibed as a minority, maybe because it gets the hits. How long were the 2 recent swattings in the news for? 1 was a white male developer....09/19/2014 - 6:47pm
Craig R.Get over it.09/19/2014 - 6:46pm
Craig R.Gamers are just lucky that their behavior wasn't brought to attention of everybody else sooner, and gamers are pissy about that09/19/2014 - 6:46pm
SleakerIn fact, just because a few female developers every year get harassed doesn't make it systematic. As a whole developers are harassed by people.. Swatted, etc.09/19/2014 - 6:46pm
Craig R.And if you don't think misogyny and sexism is widespread, then you're living with your head buried in the sand09/19/2014 - 6:45pm
Craig R.Apparently it's the gamers who are the only victims from GamerGate09/19/2014 - 6:44pm
Sleaker@AE - 1 person getting harassed is a problem. But just because 1 person gets harassed for being a female developer doesn't mean it's a systematic problem or indicative of a whole demographic.09/19/2014 - 6:44pm
Andrew EisenI don't believe anyone said or even remotely implied that harassing anyone was okay.09/19/2014 - 6:41pm
quiknkoldGeneral are being harassed, doxxed, hacked, just because they are being perceived as white males. And what about the White Males who are victims. Its ok to harass them? Anita Sarkeesian gets a bomb threat yeah, but what about the others.09/19/2014 - 6:36pm
quiknkoldwhat about all the gamers who are being harrassed, Andrew. Why does it have to be just about the women in the industry. We have 2 women, and only a handful of accounts recorded. While you could throw a dart at the internet and find a site where Gamers in09/19/2014 - 6:35pm
Andrew EisenOkay, you're talking specifically about harassment of women in the industry. So... how many (or what percentage of) women have to be harassed before you'd consider it a problem?09/19/2014 - 6:27pm
SleakerSo I think at best, we can just say something akin to 'there might be a problem, but we need more reliable information'09/19/2014 - 6:11pm
SleakerBut that takes someone actually doing a legitimate study on females in game development workplaces etc. And so far a good number of studies that get shoved into the center of attention are sensationalized through shoddy metrics and practices.09/19/2014 - 6:10pm
Sleaker@AE - I think there are select instances of gender problems that are highlighted, but I don't believe they are the norm, or 'widespread.' What would be more helpful is to show hard statistics. 1 in 100 female developers is harassed or somthing like this.09/19/2014 - 6:10pm
 

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