Poll: What Do You Think About Metacritic?

October 11, 2013 - Andrew Eisen

There sure are a lot of opinionated people on the internet, huh?

If you want to know how a movie, book, song or video game is, odds are there are dozens of reviewers out there happy to argue whether or not it's worth your time and money.

Odds are there's also porn of it.

But with so many reviews for any given piece of media, where do you start?  Who do you listen to?  You can't evaluate them all.  Or can you?

Metacritic thinks you can.  It's a site that takes a bunch of those reviews and provides you with a weighted average of all the review scores.  Some people love this as they feel it gives them a general consensus of how critics are taking to a given title.  Some don't like it for myriad reasons such as publishers awarding bonuses based on Metacritic scores, accusations of some reviewers gaming the system, Metacritic's reticence to reveal exactly how it's weighting those scores when it averages them, and lots of other reasons.

But what do you think?

Vote in our poll and opine away in the comments or in an email to us at SuperPACpodcast@gmail.com.  EZK and I will reveal the poll results and discuss your thoughts and ours on next week's podcast.

"vote label" © Tribalium / Shutterstock. All rights reserved, used with permission.

-Reporting from San Diego, GamePolitics Contributing Editor Andrew Eisen

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Re: Poll: What Do You Think About Metacritic?

I usually find that not only are user scores alot more accurate, but also that if the "professional" critics say the game is mediocre, then the game is usually an overlooked gem that is much more worth your time then some AAA title that will be on shelf for years and drop in price considerably.

Re: Poll: What Do You Think About Metacritic?

I stopped finding it useful when companies like Bioware were able to wipe all negative reviews away because surely anyone against Bioware are all homophobes. Not to mention you have companies like Bioware who have employees go on there to give good reviews for games they made.

Re: Poll: What Do You Think About Metacritic?

>Odds are there's also porn of it.

"It would appear I've... scored 69", etc.

Erm, anyway. There's nothing inherently wrong with it, I think people just want a thing to whinge about.

The problem really is people putting too much into scores and expecting all sites to score in the same way, and considering outliers to be broken or paid off rather than just not aligning with their tastes personally.

EDIT: on the subject of weighting, it would be better if it wighted on a per-user basis, so if I said I generally agreed with CVG but disagreed with IGN, it should show me a differently-weighted score to someone who said they agreed with IGN but not CVG.


Re: Poll: What Do You Think About Metacritic?

The concept of Metacritic is good.

The execution however is corrupt as hell, and I'm not just talking about userscore trolling.

Re: Poll: What Do You Think About Metacritic?

I use the player reviews sections of metacritic more than anything else, but I go through and read what people have to say about it and compare it with other games of similar genre.

Re: Poll: What Do You Think About Metacritic?

The player reviews are probably the least useful part of the site, and that takes work.

Re: Poll: What Do You Think About Metacritic?

About the only use I have for metacritic is, if I happen to see a game on steam that looks interesting, but its MC is below a 60 or so, I will do a bit more further research instead of impulse buying it.  It doesn't completely rule out a purchase, but it gives me a heads up to look into what the issues might be and whether I can tolerate them or not.

Re: Poll: What Do You Think About Metacritic?

I have heard of Metacritic, though I have never used it. The same can be said about Rotten Tomatoes. I visited Meticritic for the first time when I read this article.

Incidentally I go to The Nostalgia Critic's crew at 'That Guy With The Glasses', and 'The Angry Video Game Nerd' for random reviews.

- W

Consumer responsibility is just as important as Corporate responsibility. So, be responsible consumers.

Re: Poll: What Do You Think About Metacritic?

I think the worse use of Metacritic has been how many studios tie payment or bonuses to a particular "score" that they get on the site.  And it only gets worse with them stating "number" scores for sites that use letters or other criteria for their general score as well as ignoring all content from the written parts which hold the context of the review.  

I understand why it exists (it would regardless just with people gathering scores together and averaging them) but it shouldn't be used as a measuring stick for everything.  It's why we have had trouble initiating reviews ourselves because we are still trying to decide how we want to do them. Numbers, letters, etc or just go straight text (which sadly few people read).  We have even considered just doing videos only.

Zen aka Jeremy Powers
Editor and Host of the Zenspath Podcast (now on iTunes)
XBL: "PsychoticZen" PSN: "Zenspath"
Nintendo Network: "Psychoticzen", 3DS: "3024-7965-4819

Re: Poll: What Do You Think About Metacritic?

Never used Metacritic, never will. Arbitrary numbers mean nothing to me when making a decision. Even when I used to do crappy reviews for an obscure website years ago I hated scoring. Over time I find reviewers who tend to share my opinions and I listen to them more (these reviewers tend not to use scores), meaning I can just watch or read a couple of reviews and get an idea whether I'll enjoy the game/movie. If I add a couple of random reviews I come across into the mix then my knowledge of the game/movie may sometimes be expanded. It's not rocket science.

I have to add that I loath people's attachment to scores, or moreso those who wish harm to a reviewer who awards 8 out of 10 when they think it should be a 10 without having played the game.

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