Thursday, 10 September 2015

Why you sometimes have to guard against your own bias as a reviewer.

I like to buy games especially if I am getting a good deal, I will even try games that are not exactly my usual sort of thing if the price and the opportunity present themselves however sometimes this can lead to you getting a game which although not bad is simply not enjoyable to you as an individual.

The prime example would be that today I purchased F1 2015 for Xbox one from a pawn shop for £10. This is a heck of a deal a total bargain really when you look around and see how much it is typically selling for second hand for example game currently want £39.99 for a second hand copy (but only want to offer me £13 in exchange) really I should be over the moon and I was for a short time but upon playing the game it really want my cup of tea.

Sure I like racing games when it comes to current generation  (Xbox One and PS4 racing games I have played Forza 5, Forza Horrizon 2, Need for Speed Rivals, Drive Club, The Crew and Motorcycle club and while I cant say that F1 2015 is the worst of these games I have played it is the one I have enjoyed the least.

The graphics are good, the car handling is also good, its a little more realistic than I tend to like but I cant fault it. I just don't like the style of game. Now maybe I should have been a little more forward thinking as a lot of the things I am not keen on should have been obvious to me, I don't like the fact that the game tries to get you to practice before each track and then qualify and then race 15 laps and that is in short mode, my impatience caused me to skip the practice, half-arse the qualifying and then basically get bored 5 laps in to the game. Now I have met and have known people who would at this point call the game rubbish and if pushed to give it a rating give it something absolutely shocking but that wouldn't be fair.Sure games are supposed to be fun and if you don't find a game fun then your entitled to say that you don't like it, you can tell people that you didn't personally enjoy it, it is of course your property to sell or swap (providing you purchased a physical and not digital copy) but unless it is seriously broken and has no redeemable qualities I feel it would be wrong to slate it and give it a review which doesn't reflect its quality and instead scares people away from the game particularly people who might enjoy it.

I can confidently say that F1 2015 is a better programmed more complete game than either The Crew or Motorcycle club even if I enjoy them more in fact Motorcycle club is a far more painfully programmed mess a game in which if I was to make a tick box of everything right and wrong with it would have at least twice as many ticks in the wrong box as the right. I think that some people are not necessarily qualified to review some games and I think that I am not qualified to review F1 2015, its not my kind of game and its not intended for a person like me. If I was a professionally paid reviewer then I would of course do my best to review this game if it was part of my job, but even then I would try to see if there was someone else on the team who was more suited to the task at hand as it stands though as an independent blogger. As it stands I am going to take this game and swap it for something I think I will enjoy more, I don't regret the purchase as the price was so good I stand to profit from the situation, maybe that is one of the reasons I am going to sell it now, I am going to sell it while I can get the most from it.

We all have our biases our preferd types of entertainment and while I do feel that the spark we all contain, the thing inside us which makes us who we are can lead to deep, funny and personal reviews which are far more interesting than a review in which a person simply tries to break everything down in to a collection of numbers, a score for graphics, for sound, for playability, and length it can also lead to us having a bias against a certain type of game or a genre. I think as a reviewer it is part of your responsibility to know your own biases and to address them and maybe to not review something if you cant separate yourself from them or at the very least to make your biases known during the review.

OK well that's my thoughts on the matter, feel free to comment if you either agree or disagree with me but most of all keep on gaming.

1 comment:

  1. Yeah, I don't review games that are outside of my comfort zone as I know I'd do a bad job! Where F1 is concerned, the practice/qualifying/race format is just how the real races run over Friday/Saturday/Sunday. I personally really like the videogame versions but then again, I would probably feel exactly the same as you if I was playing FIFA or some other sports game where I don't care about the real sport.