With Anthem coming out and Xbox VP Mike Ybaraa essentially attacking reviewers I feel obligated to talk about certain things that many people just don’t discuss or talk about so much.
My first big example is many times we are sent games well before a game comes out, I got Disgaea about 2 weeks before it came out, and there is another game I am currently working on that is under embargo for a while (meaning I can’t really discuss it at all) until almost the end of the first week of March, the 5th if you want to be exact. That means the company is having me review it before any patches are released. They send these review copies out knowing full well that is the version getting reviewed, so the argument of waiting for patches really has no merit.
The other thing most people never really discuss is reviewers, most notably smaller ones like myself or places with one or 2 people doing all the reviews are constantly in a state of working under a deadline. Sometimes we have to beat a 60 or 70-hour game in a week or two while working our regular jobs. Truthfully I don’t know a single reviewer that would change this unless it was to make this our full-time job, this isn’t a complaint. Sometimes tho, things do get missed sadly and we won’t always have time to beat those larger games 2 or 3 times. (Tho I will say this, a game like Resident Evil 2 isn’t finished until you see the story with all the characters the way it was meant to be)
Other things we don’t really discuss is the times we honestly just don’t want to play a game. Not necessarily because a game is bad, tho that happens, but just because we simply want to play something else. More than a few times I have friends have said hey Savior come and slay monsters with us or we have a war to fight and I REALLY wanted to, but I needed to get that review game done. There are plenty of perks tho.
One great example is getting to work with great companies like Kalypso Media or NIS America and Modius games. Getting to try games like Empire In Ruins, Revisited. literally as one of the first people ever that wasn’t involved in making the game was awesome. Or when Kalypso Media sent me Railway Empire PS4 Pro Vs Xbox One X (And yes both consoles) was great, it was a game I was going to buy anyway and I got to try and compare it for both systems. This isn’t something I ever would have gotten to have done otherwise.
Despite the fact that many times perfection is expected from reviewers, and yes I have gotten a few messages cursing me out from people that disagreed with reviews it really is something I wouldn’t trade for just about anything. Many of the people I have gotten to meet I only met because of gaming and reviews and some of the experiences have been great. So please, cut reviewers a little slack, we are only human. Best wishes and may the gaming gods bring you glory.