Reviewer Targeted For Giving Uncharted 4 Negative Review

Reviewer Targeted For Giving Uncharted 4 Negative Review

“Your Washington post for Christ’s Sake , not a 12-year-old’s diary,” reads a recent internet petition about Uncharted 4. “Treat the game with professionalism and respect.”

This petition has over 4000 supporters and has even been signed and tweeted by the popular voice actor Troy Baker, who co-stars in the newest Uncharted. Its goal is not to demand that The Washington Post take video games more seriously, nor is it to ask the storied newspaper to expand their gaming coverage more broadly. This is a petition to remove The Washington Post‘s Uncharted 4 review score from Metacritic.

See, Washington Post reviewer Michael Thomsen did not like Uncharted 4, and he slammed the game accordingly. Thomsen, a veteran critic, usually takes a contrarian approach to his reviews, doling out harsh criticism to beloved games like Dark Souls and Red Dead Redemption. (He once wrote a regular IGN column called Contrarian Corner.) His review of Uncharted 4 does not have a score, but when The Washington Post sent it to Metacritic they gave it a 4/10, which as of right now is the only score below an 80. Hence: internet petitions.

“This guy doesn’t deserve to be taken seriously by big , crucial sites like Metacritic,” reads the petition. “It harms the Flawless reputation of the game for absolutely no reason. A review is not about what you think a game is , its about what a game is. Objective measures are applied.”

The fun doesn’t stop there. For the sin of giving Uncharted 4 a bad review, Thomsen has been barraged by tweets ranging from personal insults to actual threats. Here’s a very small sampling:

What’s sad is that this has become expected. For many years now, review scores have poisoned the discourse surrounding video games. Reviewers who shy away from the norm and offer lower scores than average are regularly faced with abuse from video game fans who feel the need to defend their favourite purchases. When a reviewer dares to give a much-hyped game like Grand Theft Auto V a non-perfect score, they risk facing the horde. Harsh criticism on sites that don’t give review scores (like Kotaku) is rarely if ever met with this sort of reaction. Numbers just drive people crazy.

Review scores, as we’ve said before, are toxic to gaming culture. They kill nuance, invite unfair comparisons and create the illusion that video games can be evaluated definitely and objectively. And Metacritic has hurt video game developers and games in all sorts of ways. Thanks to score aggregation, a 20-year-old university student who writes game reviews between classes might cost an independent studio millions of dollars.

Incidentally, Thomsen’s review isn’t even very sharp. It fails to make a convincing case that Nathan Drake’s story is an “inconclusive wreck” and it doesn’t have much to say about how the game feels or whether the game’s creators accomplished what they set out to do. One might think it could lead to some interesting critical conversations. Or it could just lead to Troy Baker signing a petition about the review score.

“I believe U4 is one of the greatest games ever created and it is my personal favourite for sure,” reads the petition, “although i can justify some reviewers giving it a 9 or an 8. But this is a utter disgrace.”


  • Normally I would say this is stupid, reviews are subjective. However, after reading the review, I can kind of see where the petition is coming from. It just doesn’t feel like the game was given a fair shake on its own merits.

      • He basically opens with a diatribe on trilogies and fourth and fifth games in a series. I mean – fine, thats his opinion, but there’s the point where a detailed review goes on some many questionable tangents, its actually worse than just saying “I don’t like it.”

        • This is the Washington Post we are talking about.

          Facing backlash over badly written opinion pieces is their daily bread.

      • Wow. I had to read it for myself after you said that… and yeah, it’s not a particularly useful ‘review’. Heh. I assumed this was just a case of fanboys being fanboys… and that’s still pretty much the case, but I can see why they’re ‘newsworthily’ pissed off.

        I don’t approve of targeting the guy for a hate campaign, though, and the petition’s pretty ridiculous.

        People need to calm down and realize:

        1) One crackpot outlier won’t tank the metacritic score on its own. I’m pretty sure that The Washington Post review gets nearly as much weighting as ‘The Naughty Dog Fan Club Monthly’ review, should they submit it. Yes, reviews are weighted and wapo might be a little higher thanks to its stature, but it’s also displayed on the ‘Publication’ page that the Washington Post has an average score 2 points lower than the average of other publications, and it’s rare for them to ever really go in depth – it’s not a gaming publication. Metacritic knows they typically review low.
        tl;dr: This won’t tank Uncharted 4’s score.

        2) Are Naughtydog even on a contract which is affected by metacritic score? Is this actually going to have any meaningful impact on anyone at all? Ohno, if we inflate the value of the WaPo review, they’re at 93 instead of 94?! I can sympathize with wanting devs of your favourite game get the reward they’re due, but EVEN IF Naughty Dog has a bullshit metacritic contract, do you really think its cut-off is 93? At worst it’s at 80 and it’ll take a LOT more than one publication to tank their score down to 80 from where it’s at now.

        Settle the fuck down, guys. Low impact. Write it off as there being – surprise! – an asshole in [a tangentially-related] industry [who appears to only do game reviews under sufferance].

        That said?
        I’ve definitely tossed the author’s name in the crackpot lunatic bin for people who don’t know what they’re talking about and are terrible at their job. That’s an insult for sure, but not ‘for the sin of giving Uncharted 4 a bad review’. It’s an insult for being bad at reviewing games. That ‘review’ wasn’t worth printing/posting as a ‘review’ as such. It was just an over-large tweet saying he didn’t like it, a blurb of a blog post as filler on a news-print column.

        • At the very top of the review, above the headline, there’s a little link which says “comic riffs”, so it’s possible this was intended to be satire.

          Problem is, it’s not actually funny. So it’s either a really bad review or really bad satire. And if it is satire, then what the hell are Metacritic doing including it in their score calculations in the first place, regardless of what that score might be?

          • I took a bit of a gander around the site. Turns out that ‘comic riffs’ is actually just the name of the section that video games falls under. It’s in with comics and comic-book ‘culture’. I assume the same way that Kotaku is about video-game culture, but covers comics news.

        • You’re absolutely right in saying that one review won’t tank the aggregate scores. However, it can and does happen in much larger numbers for equally stupid reasons. I think it will happen to the latest CoD for example. I don’t think it will be a bad game, nor will it be perfect. I’m not a CoD fan, but the whole YouTube dislike thing has investors very worried….

      • Ehh… he did mention that there was shooting and climbing. But yea, no description of how it feels to play, so might as well have not bothered.

    • I actually didn’t have an issue with the review, they are reviewing it very differently to most other outlets but that isn’t a bad thing in and of itself.
      The review is basically focused on the story and plot, rather than gameplay. Or might not be what you are looking for but if the washington post thinks that is the most important thing to their readers then the score is more than relevant.
      Maybe if more people reviewed that way we would get better story, writing and plot in games.

      • That would make sense if the story and plot of UC4 was lacking or was being sacrificed for gameplay but anyone that plays it can tell alot of work has gone into the characters and plot if this game. More so then alot of games. Washington post are just stirring the pot trying to do a little “look at me” I dislike popular things.

        • Fair enough, I haven’t played the game. To me the review read more like somebody reviewing a game using movie criteria rather than gaming criteria.

          • Yeah I’d agree it makes me wonder if this guy actually ‘likes’ video games. Or if he’s just a wannabe movie critic given the job his colleagues scoff at. That’s reading i to it alot but that’s the vibe I get from it.

        • it’s almost like people have opinions or something that won’t necessarily align with yours.

          fucking shocking innit

      • Maybe if more people reviewed that way we would get better story, writing and plot in games

        Naughty Dog do that stuff better than most others in the business. If he’s going to give them a 4 for their work on that basis, then pretty much every other game on the market should be getting somewhere in the vicinity of -150 / 10.

        • Which would probably be accurate? Uncharted’s story is pretty trite as far as a film or literature plot would go but as far as gaming goes it’s a gold standard.

          • Yeah, but he’s reviewing a game, not film or literature.

            And to be fair, Uncharted isn’t actually all that bad compared to the majority of action / adventure type movies out there. I’ll take an Uncharted game over a Tomb Raider movie any day, thanks.

    • Yup, the petition is dumb, but the article genuinely was a badly written review. Gameplay was not even mentioned, apparently the game is very detailed and this is a bad thing, sound design, music, voice acting and more are all not mentioned, the story and visuals are all that are discussed at all and within those two categories all he manages to put forward as actual opinion that the visuals are garish and that the story is bad. I feel like I could have written this review without once touching the game itself, based only off the trailers and play-throughs other people have done and that’s bloody ridiculous (both that the writing is as bad as mine and that it could have been written without having played the game).

    • I came here expecting to defend the reviewer (for one, I don’t think it’s a perfect game), but having now read the review in question, that guy is a complete moron.

  • So are the targeted responses a direct result of the review itself or the submitted score to Metacritic? Opinions that don’t align with the mainstream aren’t new, whether it be EDGE magazine or Yahtzee’s Zero Punctuation; I’m just curious whether the score dilemma is the catalyst. Personally, I’m happy to read score-less reviews, but usually on games where my purchase decision is on the fence. If I’ve been anticipating a title for months, I’d prefer to play the game, form my own view and compare against reviews after the fact.

    • I believe it to be the inclusion on metacritic, with the industry’s reliance on MC for some sort of yard stick of quality, having a black mark from a review the likes of the one in question make for skewed results.

      That said, I don’t disagree entirely with the review, 4/10 probably not but 6 or 7 I could understand any negativity. I loved the game, though I would put it at 2nd in the series behind Among Thieves, but the case of going through the motions, ticking off all the Uncharted staples kinda rings true. It so happens that Uncharted staples are above average and even an ordinary entry is still good. Having Sam as Nathans foil, a self reflection of who he was in UC3, the fool turning his back on friends for the sake of treasure felt a little forced in the sense that it was the only way to further Nathan as a character, the entire game felt almost like an epilogue to the series. I never felt especially invested in Sam as a character and the relationship between him and Nathan was quite dull in places. I see shades of The Last of Us in UC4 but TLoU stuck the landing a lot better, so to speak.

      • I don’t think Among Thieves could’ve been surpassed; I’ve got a theory about franchises hitting their sweet spot on the 2nd iteration (first sequel) – AC II, ME 2, Uncharted 2, Thief II, Borderlands 2…. I don’t mind the “if it ain’t broke…” addage and I’m still thoroughly enjoying my yet to be finished U4 adventure, but I agree that Sam lacks depth and colour. Some of the extra play forming elements are a nice change but I wonder why Nate neglected to use ropes for so long (out of mourning?!). Thankfully we have Elena to keep things interesting.

        • Oh the rope.
          That’s right Sam, I’m stuck down here, you are up top and you have a rope. You don’t need to go looking for a crate or some destructible terrain, just lower your damn rope and pull me the fuck up >.

          • This is undoubtedly going to ruin my second playthrough 😛 How did no one on the dev team think of this!

    • Yeah, I wouldn’t raise an eyebrow at someone deciding to go post a contrarian essay, the internet’s full of those and they can be fun. But 4 is like… crazy low, and it seems like the reviewer wasn’t actually reviewing the game so much as they were reviewing the franchise or even the industry. That… doesn’t seem like a fair thing to put on one specific title’s metacritic score.

      I mean, there was no score on the review, but there was a score submitted to metacritic? That’s verging on vindictive.

      • Fair comment. I haven’t read the offending review as such, so it’s good to get an objective summary of said review sans frothing at the mouth. XD I’ll track it down later, but it almost sounds kick it should’ve been an editorial on a broader topic rather than a review…

        • It’s barely even that. It’s just a couple paragraphs. Reads like filler on a news-print ‘entertainment media’ page.

      • I think it’s metacritic that assigns the score once the review is submitted? I may be wrong.

  • Then only thing that seems ’12 year old’ to me is the petition text. The game you love didn’t get the respect it deserves amidst a sea of very generous review scores? Outrageous! It’s one red mark in a sea of high numbered green. Check out the number of ‘perfect’ scores.

    I think more reviews should be scoreless. I would like to know how metacritic decides on unscored reviews.

    • Per wondering how they interpret scoreless reviews: they cover that question fairly well on their FAQ.

      “I read Manohla Dargis’ review of [MOVIE NAME] and I swear it sounded like a 90… why did you say she gave it an 80?”
      “…this does pose a problem for our METASCORE computations, which are based on numbers, not qualitative concepts like art and emotions. (If only all of life were like that!) Thus, our staff must assign a numeric score, from 0-100, to each review that is not already scored by the critic. Naturally, there is some discretion involved here, and there will be times when you disagree with the score we assigned. However, our staffers have read a lot of reviews–and we mean a lot–and thus through experience are able to maintain consistency both from film to film and from reviewer to reviewer. When you read over 200 reviews from Manohla Dargis, you begin to develop a decent idea about when she’s indicating a 90 and when she’s indicating an 80.
      Note, however, that our staff will not attempt to assign super-exact scores like 87 or 43, as doing so would be impossible. Typically, we will work in increments of 10 (so a good review will get a 60, 70, 80, 90, or 100), although in some instances we may also fall halfway in-between (such as a 75).”

      The next question response adds a useful addendum to the above, indicating that if the actual reviewer gets back to them to correct their intention for an interpreted score, Metacritic will update the score accordingly.

  • I think ‘entitlement l’ is one of those buzz words that has all but lost its meaning so I strongly avoid using it, but it is so warranted here. The mere concept that one’s enjoyment of a game grants them some kind of rights/jurisdiction over the opinions that don’t fully synch up with their own has got to be the epitome of Internet-based entitlement.

  • The day a petition changes a review score is the day IGN gives God Hand a decent score.

  • Wait…people actually use metacritic to get an expectation for how good a game is??!!

    • Or they’re just mad he betrayed the hive-mind. It’s about ethics in opinions, or something.

    • Game developers can have bits in their contracts about it being above a certain score on metacritic and getting paid their bonuses. It’s been on this site in the past.

      • And that’s a problem with publishers and stupid contracts. Contracts shouldn’t have metacritic qualifiers in them.

      • That’s a problem for the game devs silly enough to allow that clause. I’ve never known of anyone who actually uses metacritic to decide if a game is worth buying.

        • That’s a problem for the game devs silly enough to allow that clause.

          If the option is a good job with the clause or unemployment in such a competitive industry, they’ll take the contract most of the time.

          • True, but it’s also something that is largely out of their control. Even a good game will get negative reviews. No point hitting back at it when it happens.

  • Whiny fucking idiots…

    It harms the Flawless reputation of the game for absolutely no reason. Oh no, heaven forbid a game drop 1% average!

    A review is not about what you think a game is , its about what a game is.
    … You hurt my brain. And need to apply this to your over-inflated view of Metacritic; it’s only a website, not the be-all, end-all you think a website is.

    • To be fair, there has been at least one case of a developer studio withholding bonuses from employees for failing to get MC80% by literally 1%.

      • Sure, but as others have pointed out, that’s a problem with the studio/publisher. It’s not something reviewers should be held hostage over.

        • That’s true, especially when criticism is warranted. But a quick look at the “review” shows really weak argumentation and pre-made conclusions. Taking in account that it’s the only review to offer such low score, it is hard not to suspect ulterior motivations.

          • Deciding if a review is valid enough to be considered a review would be a review of the review – reviewception! If the original review can be deemed invalid, who’s to say the review making that conclusion isn’t itself invalid? This is why you can’t really just decide a review isn’t ‘good enough’ because everyone has different ideas for what that means. They have a degree of subjectiveness by their nature, and there’s no rule on how subjective it’s allowed to be.

            Take Mark Serrels’ reviews, for instance, which are a lot more subjective/personal than your typical magazine/newspaper reviewer, but that doesn’t mean they’re bad. It’s better to just leave a review as it is – you can agree or disagree with it of course, but you can’t erase it or declare it ‘doesn’t count’ because we don’t like its content. If it had been secretly paid for that’d be a different thing, but merely disagreeing or considering the reviewer’s logic flawed doesn’t strike me as enough.

          • I don’t disagree with that. The crux of the issue is not so much disagreeing with the author of the review, but rather the warranted suspicion of an agenda on his part. Whether intently wanting to damage the studio and/or game or a cry for Internet notoriety, If the dude is purposefully being a dick for whatever reason, shouldn’t he be called out?

          • Sure, nothing wrong with calling him out. That’s not what the petition is about though.

      • Which would be a fair point, if ND asked about the non-score review suddenly going up and throwing the curve.

        These screechy man-babies, however, just sound like a pack of “my identity is deeply ingrained in the media I consume” twats having a moan that someone didn’t like said media.

  • Maybe after Chapter 15 he thought the same thing I did – “Fuck this stupidity – why are the recycling the same game tropes people hate”

    Seriously, after Chapter 15 I was ready to pack it in

    • I cant remember which one i played, but it had blue monsters at the end. Fuck that game was way too long. Dragged it out way longer than they needed to. Could jave shortened it by an hour or two and had a better game for it!

  • This is sad. What the hell are they complaining about? They obviously love the game; have bought it and played it. So why they hell would a negative review have to draw them out, wailing and gnashing of teeth? This is why we can’t have nice things.

  • It does seem kind of silly in this day and age to get so angry over a review, but after reading the review it’s… well, it’s a shit “review”. The reviewer seems to be crapping on the game for the hell of it, not even discussing anything to do with the game play, the mechanics, the new additions that the forth game brings to the franchise (e.g. larger environments, multiple paths etc.)

    Maybe I’m just making the wrong assumption, but it looks like the reviewer wrote the review like this to create controversy and to gain attention. Bad or good, any attention is attention, right?

    This guy’s review didn’t bother me too much. I love the game and many others do too, so that’s enough for me.

  • You know writing isn’t entirely subjective, right? I know this is the way the games media likes to craft the narrative to avoid any responsibility but writing has a structure and words have meaning, they aren’t just arbitrary scribbles as they like to paint them when someone dares critique their work. We can measure the efficacy and validity of a point, we can measure the conventions of game design and you can be WRONG even if you call it a “review”, it doesn’t mean incorrect statements suddenly become correct or that your assumptions aren’t just that. It doesn’t mean you can leave out valid, valuable information that challenges the tone of your piece. This stuff regularly happens and it seems so bizarre the games media tries to divert attention dichotomously so they don’t have to rectify or even consider what can objectively be defined as a “flaw” in any literary arena. It kind of sucks that we have kids in school held to a literary standard when the media they consume seems to just flail its arms about, point to the same crowd as being at fault and deny any critique levelled in their direction – no matter how accurately it is defined.

    • Sounds like you’re advocating academic critique over journalistic critique, even though they can fulfill separate functions.

  • The fact that Troy Baker signed it is what terrifies me the most. I am also pretty sure the author said that the review was satire, and was never meant to be taken seriously, which is why no score was attached to it.

    • I am also pretty sure the author said that the review was satire, and was never meant to be taken seriously, which is why no score was attached to it.

      That argument kinda flies out the window once you submit a score – to be taken very seriously – to metacritic.

      • The point is that the author didn’t put a score on it, the publication did when they sent it to metacritic. So the publication is to blame, not the reviewer.

        • Doesn’t that kind of strengthen the case that it should be disregarded by metacritic, since it was incorrectly submitted as a review when it’s ‘meant to be satire’? [Edit: Note, I don’t think there’s really a case.]

          Still dubious about the satire label, though. It doesn’t read like satire, it reads like ill-informed and ham-fisted criticism, pretending to be a review.

          Being under the ‘comic riffs’ category doesn’t actually relate to its supposed satirical nature, either. By the WaPo’s own categorization, that’s their section for ‘cartoons to comic culture’, not just straight satire, with other articles discussing comics and comic-related films. If you go to the ‘video games’ section, the heading is clearly:
          ‘Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End’ review: This four-part series should have ended after Part One
          All their ‘legit’ reviews fall under the same category.

          Graphic novels, superheroes, film, comic books, comic strips, political cartoons, video games, animation all fall under the broad category of ‘comic riffs’.

          I reckon it’s legit, I reckon when they were asked for a numerical score (which they didn’t put on their own site) it was delivered to metacritic with the intention of being a bad score. The score should stand; they didn’t like it, and that’s fine (even if they did a shit-house job of articulating why). Most people liked it, not everyone did, that’s averages doing their job, it’s all reflected in the end result.

  • Although I think this guy’s review is an unfair and probably more for the lols than anything else, I was under the impression that MC functioned like a self-correcting system: i.e. if a game is good, negative reviews would be drowned out by those that are positive, and vice-versa.
    Are certain people’s reviews given higher weighting or something? Because if not, then fans would simply need to give their positive reviews to make this guy’s shrink into nothingness, right?

    In any case, the few times a year I actually visit the MC site, I usually take it as a really very loose yardstick and when I bother to read reviews, it’s usually to confirm what I’ve already decided about a game.

    • Critic reviews and user reviews are tracked separately. The one in question is a critic review so users can’t do anything about it.

      That said, it’s just a review. It’s just someone’s opinion. It’s allowed to exist and be measured whether people agree with it or don’t, or think it’s right or wrong.

  • Look – I have never played an uncharted game, I don’t own a PS4 but this game looks absolutely amazing – the game is no 4/10!

    Is this the same guy who said Dark Souls was good for the first 5 hours and then it was a pointless slog through 100 hours of hell!?

    If it is in sure that guy probably doesn’t even like games or is perhaps confecting his disdain in order to generate hits

  • A large part of the fault here is with Metacritic’s shotgun approach to accepting review scores.

    If they excluded the highest 10% of scores and the lowest 10% of scores when calculating their overall number it would stop this sort of statistical outlier from having a disproportionate effect.

  • Numbers are the worst.
    eg IGN. I read comments like “are they serious giving X a 7.6. This was easily an 8.”
    and I think to myself – are these people fucking serious? I don’t get it, at all. Why do the numbers, stars, thumbs up, etc matter so much. And don’t get me started about people using metacritic numbers to try and prove a point, or win an argument.
    Shouldn’t it be all about the actual review? I hate final scores…

  • Don’t feed the Troll. (Admittedly I went and read his review…for science)

    From the deliberately inflammatory headline, we head into an opening paragraph which laments the practice of sequels with the claim that no sequel has ever told a good story, and that the only way for a good story to be told is through a single volume. No evidence or argument is made to back up his statement – this is just his opinion.

    The next 4-5 paragraphs give the history of the franchise, with a focus on the reviewers perceptions of the negative aspects of those titles.

    The next 3 paragraphs give a brief synopsis and a few narky comments on the plot of this installment.

    Eventually we get a paragraph about the actual gameplay and how the reviewer finds the presentation garish and distracting. Essentially he doesn’t like the framing. No mention of mechanics, graphics, sound, music, style, settings, performance, etc…just that there is too much on the screen at once.

    Finally we have a paragraph that suggests that the whole Uncharted series is summed up by the first part of the latest installment – a clever but unsatisfying illusion. One could argue that it is also an apt allegory of the review…

    So as a review we get ONE actual paragraph on one aspect of the gameplay that the reviewer didn’t like, a wholly subjective one, and a whole lot of narc. It screams CLICKBAIT and the Washington Post has published knowing it is pure trash intended to drive traffic.

  • people like him get off on being elitist and hating things the mass market sees as good. he wants the attention and typical of the stupid internet sheeple for doing what stupid intertnet sheeple do, get upset and not in healthy ways and just gave him what he wanted.

    well done sheeple all you did was make him look better. here is an idea next time you read something you dont agree with or a trailer you dont like or some gender video makes you feel emasculated just ignore it or try to see things through their eyes. if you truly like the game what does it matter?

    they have a right to their opinion and expressing their own views, it doesnt impact you personally and it especially doesnt destroy the world. so why waste the energy?

  • As much as I enjoy the game and strongly disagree with the review, I do still think the petition is out of line. The same people signing this petition are probably the same ones arguing IGN only give good reviews when they’re paid for advertising etc etc. But because this time it’s a game they like that didn’t get a good review, it’s pitchforks and torches.

    TL:DR: it’s ethics in games journalism if a game you like gets a bad review, and also ethics in games journalism if a game you don’t like gets a good review.

    Again, I think the review is terrible. But a petition trying to silence it isn’t the answer either. My issue is more with Metacritic and it’s undue influence on developer bonuses, customer perception and the industry in general.

    • I have to laugh at all the comments in this thread, trying to have their cake and eat it too.

      Either this guy is entitled to his opinion or not. It doesn’t matter if we think he’s wrong. It doesn’t even matter if he decided not to back up his opinion in his review. He didn’t like the game. I loved every minute of Uncharted 4, but I wouldn’t expect everyone to.

      • The Cult of Naughty Dog is not to be messed with Shane…

        The article could give it a 10 but they’d still whinge if it didn’t say “masterpiece” at least 12 times and have angelic music coming from the back end of a unicorn.

  • It wouldn’t be that hard for Metacritic to add some basic statistical information rather than just use the average. It could start by adding the standard deviation and median.

    • Pretty difficult to do when they actually use a weighting system which assigns a greater weight to certain publications… who they absolutely refuse to name, or disclose how much weight is given.

      • It’s just statistics and there’s computer software to do it in lots of computer languages.

        There are such things as weighted averages and weighted means. They don’t need to reveal how much each review weighs.

  • This is probably the guy who would give every yearly iteration of call of duty a 10 for being so innovative

  • I read this article and the review, having no horse at all in this vendetta-based race. I like Uncharted well enough — as dumb, pointless fun.

    What stands out is the quality of sarcasm in the WaPo review. It’s much wittier and incisive than what is produced by the cliché specialists and industry-pleasers who usually write game reviews and game journalism (sorry, Kotaku). This may be hard for people who live their cultural lives in video games to understand. If so, it’s a pity. Read more, maybe? Get outside your comfort zone occasionally?

    Does the piece fail to make its case, though, as claimed here? Oh, hardly. It says the storytelling in Uncharted(s) is fluff to pace the visuals, and it’s right. It says Uncharted keeps recycling its premise while struggling to differentiate itself anew. And it’s right.

    People signing petitions against a review are modeling a very simple, half-conscious form of fascism — a wish to have authority bully those who don’t agree with them — and the response should be to laugh.

  • The response to this review clearly isnt reasonable or fair minded. Homophobic slurs are never justifiable.
    Having said that, I wonder why it was never pointed out that this review is also fairly poorly written, and generally uninteresting. These guys only keep writing this very sub par stuff as long as people respond as Kotaku and others have. Its not interesting, so ignore it?

  • “You know writing isn’t entirely subjective, right?”

    Writing is entirely subjective. Language is a mode of information, invented and employed by the authors of a system. There is no empirical measure from which to derive meaning, and any meaning prescribed is equally as arbitrary.

    “I know this is the way the games media likes to craft the narrative to avoid any responsibility but writing has a structure and words have meaning, they aren’t just arbitrary scribbles as they like to paint them when someone dares critique their work.”

    Language is entirely arbitrary. There’s no reason one arrangement of sounds or images ought mean X over Y. You can argue that an example of language does not conform with your own prescription, or that one violates their own prescription, but it remains arbitrary.

    “We can measure the efficacy and validity of a point,”

    Not always. Measure the efficacy and validity of the following: blue is greater than red.

    “We can measure the conventions of game design and you can be WRONG even if you call it a ‘review’, it doesn’t mean incorrect statements suddenly become correct or that your assumptions aren’t just that.”

    You appeal to the standard (video game convention) as if that bears any value. At most you can demonstrate that one’s opinion differs from the popular opinion. Dislike of convention is no more right or wrong than like of convention. I think the Mona Lisa is a terrible painting, because I define good art as, at the least, entertaining, and the Mona Lisa does not entertain me. In what sense is that statement incorrect?

    “It doesn’t mean you can leave out valid, valuable information that challenges the tone of your piece.”

    You assume that which you value is valuable in nature, but offer no argument as to why.

    “This stuff regularly happens and it seems so bizarre the games media tries to divert attention dichotomously so they don’t have to rectify or even consider what can objectively be defined as a ‘flaw’ in any literary arena.”

    The rules of any literary arena are arbitrary. There is no objective measure from which to derive truth in language.

    “It kind of sucks that we have kids in school held to a literary standard when the media they consume seems to just flail its arms about, point to the same crowd as being at fault and deny any critique levelled in their direction – no matter how accurately it is defined.”

    You repeat yourself again, but provide no example and no argument. You have failed in my literary arena.

  • Ok so his review sucks. But the whining fanboys seriously need to get a life. How does his review take away from their enjoyment of the game in any way? It’s an opinion. Just like all reviews. These crybabies really need to get laid

  • Why do we care?

    If you like the game buy it, keep it. If you don’t, buy a different game.

    The end result is the same for everyone.

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