Metacritic Responds To Criticism, Removes Ability To Rate Developers

Earlier this week we got word that Metacritic was intending to start rating individual developers in addition to video games. There was a bit of a backlash amongst consumers and the press, and now Metacritic has responded.

Apparently the whole idea was to add new functionality to the site, and enable users to dig a little deeper when it came to finding information about games and developers.

Over the last week or so, there has been an enthusiastic discussion in the gaming press and social media about how the Metacritic team collects and displays credits and scores for individual contributors to video games. I want to put our process in context, provide some history, and explain where we’ll be going in the future.

As part of our relaunch of Metacritic in August of last year, one of our goals was to make the site much more dynamic and to allow our users to discover new products by exploring other titles by the creative teams behind the movies, games, TV shows, and albums our users enjoy.

In our movies section, for example, we wanted our users to be able to click on an actor, a director, or writer and view a page dedicated to that individual. On that page, a user can currently view all movies in the Metacritic database that the individual in question starred in, directed, or has written, along with the individual movies’ Metascores, and an overall “career score.” This career score is not an independent evaluation (or an aggregation of reviews of) the individual person in question – it’s a simple average of all the individual Metascores assigned to those movies the individual worked on. We license our movie credit database from our partner IMDb.

Turns out that Metacritic has now decided it doesn't have the information necessary to properly implement the feature, and is now abandoning the idea.

Although our credits database (which is powered by our sister site GameFAQs) is growing, as our users’ feedback has indicated, it is a work in progress and is not nearly as comprehensive as it needs to be to accurately provide a career score for these individuals. As such, we have removed that career score from the pages dedicated to creative individuals behind games on Metacritic. We are still very much committed to building a credits database, and welcome your participation in that process.

What's your view - is removing this feature a good move by Metacritic?

Why we turned off career scores for people in our game credits [Metacritic]



    I don't really mind metacritic - even though one could argue it detracts from the videogame industry - but I get the feeling they're struggling to innovate and remain relevant.

    And while I feel pretty indifferent, the fact they have to backtrack does reflect on them unfavourably.

    I never really cared less, but I think it should be there for movies. I don't really see it as necessary for games though, as people don't care about the people involved in making a game as much as they do about movie directors/actors.

    I think people shouldn't be able to review Developers, but I think devs should get a score based on the aggregate for their games on Metacritic.

    I know if they put their proposed feature in place, EA/Ubisoft would get slammed for their DRM.

      eh EA would get slammed because according to most of the people i know they ruined bioware

    They seem to think the information they were already provide is accurate.

    Good to hear. The idea sounds like a good one, to be able to choose an actor and see every movie they are in, or choose a developer you like and maybe see other games they have worked on, but the inclusion of the career score was unnecessary and just caused the response that we saw. Minus this feature I think this upgrade is a good idea.

    Metacritic is useful if you want to have an easy to access list of reviews.

    The numbers themselves are not so great when one man's 6 might be another man's 8, even if they enjoyed the games the same. So that aspect of the site is effectively useless, at least for me.

    This is so retarded. People are criticising Metacritic for providing an informational service that no-one is being forced to use.

      Given that a lot of devs only recieve payments from publishers if the metacritic score for their games are above a certain threshold (which is already BS given the current state of game journalism) rating the developers individually on metacritic is just going to screw them over even more.

    Well, really If there is a quality of a video game that you like, for example the art or design. Just look at the credits of the game and find the portfolios of the artists that you enjoy. You will find that many of them have an online presence.

    That's again not a fault of Metacritic.

    No-one has to look at those figures and the information is all available elsewhere anyway - it's not even a 'Kane and Lynch' issue of games being rated too low by specific outlets - the Metacritic pages have no actual relationship to how the games actually score in their individual reviews.

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