How I Review Games

Find out more about how I assign review scores

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Written by Josh Humphriss

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Posted: 23 Jan, 2023

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Modified: 23 Jan, 2023

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I'm sorry it's the best free stock photo I could find

Introduction

Most popular outlets will review most AAA games as well as some indies as soon as the embargo drops. However, I am not doing this to make money. Instead, I want to use this as a space to share my thoughts about some of the games I've really enjoyed playing, whether it's a brand new game or already very old.

I review games entirely based on how much I enjoy them. Whether others will enjoy them or not does not factor into the review score. I look for games which are enjoyable, innovative and memorable.

Scoring

Each game is assigned two scores:

Overall Score

The overall score measures how much I enjoyed the game, but ignoring any performance issues and bugs.

The score ranges from 0 to 16:

Score Descriptor Comments
16
MasterpieceAn innovative concept brilliantly executed.
15
OutstandingA brilliant concept brilliantly executed.
14
AmazingA brilliant concept with good execution, or a good concept with brilliant execution.
13
BrilliantA good concept executed quite well.
12
GreatA great concept that could've been explored further, or a well-established concept executed well.
11
GoodA good game that I enjoyed playing, but falls short in multiple regards.
10
Quite GoodStill somewhat enjoyable, but also very lacking.
9
OkayYou may enjoy this game, but there are better games available to play.
8
MehIt's not necessarily bad, it's just not that good either.
5-7Not RecommendedI do not recommend this game.
1-4GarbageThis is utter garbage and you should not play this game.
0N/AThis game is actually completely non-existent.

Tech Score

The tech score measures how buggy the game is and how well it performs on my playthrough.

Note that I am no more lenient with the tech score for a game with better graphical fidelity, so you may want to interpret the tech scores in context of how complex the game is. Better graphical fidelity will positively affect the overall score.

The score ranges from 0 to -8:

Score Bugs Performance
0No noticeable bugsFramerate consistently excellent
-1Very few bugsFramerate consistently adequate
-2Few bugsFramerate often adequate, with some stutters
-3Few major bugsFramerate consistently not quite as desired / Some major frame drops
-4Frequent or major bugsInconsistent framerate with prolonged stutters
-5Frequent major bugsFramerate is inconsistent and poor
-6Very frequent major bugsFramerate is consistently poor
-7The frequent major bugs or atrocious framerate render the game essentially unplayable.
-8Can't even get past the title screen! (the game doesn't actually work at all)

Keeping Reviews Updated

For most publications, their review will get shared very quickly and the score will be essentially locked in. They cannot significantly change the review without being dishonest. Fortunately, I am not popular! So I will try and keep reviews as updated as I can as my thoughts change surrounding a game. This is also reflected in the review scores - review scores may depreciate slightly over time as newer and better games are released.

What don't I consider?

There are some notable things which I will not influence my review score. If these factors matter to you, you must consider the review score in context of these factors.

Cost

I am simply reviewing how good a game is. The price changes over time anyway, so you should consider whether it is worth the price given my review score.

Duration

I will not give a higher score to a longer game. Nor will I disadvantage games that are longer. I will determine how good the game while it's on my screen, but won't judge it for being too short or too long. I often score very short games highly on my list (P.S. Developers, if you don't have any content left, please just end, thanks).

Selection Bias

I only review games that I have finished (where applicable), and I only finish games that are actually good. This is why you will see me often giving out very positive reviews - If it's bad, I don't play it!

Conclusion

I hope this has been helpful and may give a bit of insight as to why my review scores may sometimes be surprising. If you have any more questions, please let me know.