See that god damn heading? See it? If you are reading this solely because of that headline, welcome to the site you blithering dolt. This is what I would have liked to called the article:
Letter From the Editor: The Slow Death of Quality Journalism
There’s been a growing sense of distrust towards the gaming media from its audience (who I lovingly refer to as plebs). The idea that we’ve been completely bought out by advertisers and publishers and are lovingly blown by PR agencies every night isn’t exactly new and has only been reinforced by scandal after scandal over the last few years. A Cracked article (with a paltry million+ views) paints a certain picture of the industry that is kind of recognisable, but has sentiments I can’t agree with. You might need to read the article through the link to understand my take on it – shock horror right guys? Imagine that, having to actually read an opinion and a reaction to that opinion to get the full gist of what’s being said.
(Regarding point 3: Publishers are gaming the review system) Yeah, sure, you normally get shown the most polished piece of the game when playing a preview, because publishers aren’t retarded. When I pitch an article, I pitch the best part of that article, because the rest of it hasn’t been written yet, or needs polishing, or is secretly garbage and I have to hide it from the editor in order to still get paid. The idea that this is ‘gaming the system’ as opposed to ‘common sense, a guy has to eat’ is intellectually dishonest. This kind of lie is so intrinsic to the human condition it should, by rights, have a word in the English language. Hell, I’m going to make one for it now: ‘marketing’.
Further, saying that the disparity between Metacritic and critics scores is in anyway meaningful is straight up ridiculous. Know why? Because no-one is accountable on Metacritic. You come to DC, you don’t like a score, you get to leave a comment telling me what a rabbit fondling clown I am and to bash me personally over every form of social media available to you. In turn, I cry myself to sleep before leaving the industry forever.
Seriously – you morons have seen to it that Beyond: Two Souls received a Metacritic score of 70. Yeah, I get that Gamespot gave it a 9 or something (I hope someone got fired for that) but this showcases the ability of your average gamer to spot quality or a turd that just happened to star Ellen Page and Williem Dafoe is remarkably bad. This is the same site where people trashed DmC before it was released because they didn’t like change. When people started bitching that it wasn’t hard enough or it had changed too much from the original, no-one asked the right question for the right time, which was:
That is an artistic question. That is an interesting question. That is a question that will help artists and developers in the future try to understand what it is they might like to do when rebooting a franchise. That is how culture develops. Despite this, the big news and the big question concerned whether or not readers and pleb critics were ‘entitled’ or ‘brain damaged’.
I’m kind of getting tired of seeing people bitch at Kotaku, the same passive aggressive comment thrown at them every time some puff piece is shared. ‘Must be a slow news day’ – wow, brilliant, if you don’t like it, share and promote a site that covers things you think relevant or interesting. It’s easy to sit there and take shots – actively promoting might be hard, but you know what? It’s appreciated, and if that stuff you like is stuff that other people start to like, then bam, you’ve made a difference to overall quality, even if it’s just a drop against the current tidal wave of complete and utter faff that’s spreading like herpes on a schoolies cruise ship.
Quality journalism will always be the same, but the quality of readers changes. If you don’t want to challenge yourself, and you find yourself to clicking on the kind lobotomic shit Up Worthy keeps pushing your way so you can get your quick emotional fix, don’t be surprised if the money you give with your clicks starts changing the landscape. Demand better from yourselves before you demand it from others. If not, enjoy the rest of the landslide into unreliable, shitty news designed to keep you pleasantly distracted and entertained while real events go down.
But what do I know? I’m just another wanker with a keyboard.