Hello Nintendo fans! Thank you once again for visiting our site for all things Nintendo. We know we’re relatively new around here and so you may be wondering how our reviews work. And so we thought we’d share our point of view on this sometimes quite controversial topic…
Our general guiding principles here at The Nintendo Gamer are to keep things positive and share the fun while talking about Nintendo news, games and related trivia. We do believe though that reviewing games is quite simply sharing an opinion. Sometimes those opinions will be about what we liked, but, just as importantly sometimes, they will about what we didn’t. However, we’ll always try to explain why we felt the way we did – why something did or didn’t appeal to us. There will of course be some focus on technical aspects of the games we play. However, unless we’re talking about an obvious bug or an otherwise glitchy game it’s virtually impossible to be completely objective about any one metric. Think about it – when was the last time you agreed completely with someone else about what makes specific music or art ‘good’? So, again, we’ll try to focus on what about those technical aspects we enjoyed or didn’t. We’re therefore hoping you take some time to read a written review and/or watch the related video – here’s an example of why that’s so important:
Maybe a reviewer doesn’t like a game because they found the open-world too expansive and overwhelming. They didn’t like constantly feeling lost. In general, they prefer very specific goals, objectives and checklists in their gameplay. They also found the music too one-dimesional and boring. They may therefore give the game a lower score. You, on the other hand, absolutely love unguided exploration and find the music enchanting and relaxing. In this specific case, you will no doubt disagree with the final score. However, the very explanation provided by the reviewer about why they didn’t like it – may be just the info you needed to purchase it!
Not every person will like every game. And, just because we do or don’t like a game doesn’t mean you will agree. And that’s ok. In fact, we encourage it! However, we do ask you to dig deeper. Als, please feel free to comment on the review when you agree with something and especially if you don’t. Just keep it friendly and constructive. We know it’s great to have lively discussion about out favourite hobby. We’ll always do our best to choose a reviewer that matches the game in question and we’ll try to review as many Nintendo first-party titles and even a range of the great Indie games that make the Switch their home.
Tell us about the scoring!
As you can probably tell, the fact is we don’t like numbered/lettered scores. It’s not only very difficult to put a specific number on a game (especially these days when anything under 7 is seemingly considered ‘a bad game’) but then you also havethe difficult task of trying to justify (often months or years later) why one game got a 9.5 and the other 10.0 – especially if they are different games reviewed by a different reviewer. It can be bit of a nightmare. That being said, we know that (despite our our valiant request above) many readers sometimes don’t have time to read a long review and sometimes prefer, or even demand, a quick, obvious identifier. Something eye-catching to give you a brief general opinion. And we realise this type of score can be useful especially if it comes from a reviewer who shares many of your own gaming preferences.
And so, we hope we’ve found a reasonable compromise. Whenever we can, we will provide a quick video review for our games. This will give you short summary of what you can expect and mean you don’t have to read through a wall of text. Secondly, although (for now) our games will not have numbered/lettered scores – we will try to file each review under one of four categories: Masterpiece, Good, Bad, Broken/Unplayable. And really, we’re hoping we never have to use the last one. We’ll also add a quick bulleted list of good and bad points. And we’ll provide that info right at the top of the review.
Masterpiece will used be for games that are truly special. Outstanding titles that the reviewer really loved and that definitely warrant you consideration.
Good games will likely be the largest category. There of course is a range of quality and enjoyment – but if a game is considered goof by a reviewer that means they generally enjoyed the gameplay and would be happy to play it again.
Bad games are reserved for titles that although not broken, were not enjoyable to play. Technical aspects will likely be mentioned but these games will likely also include games that left the reviewer feeling disappointed, angry or frustrated due to game design they found to be poor or similar issues.
Broken/Unplayable. As mentioned we hope to never have to use this one. These will be used for games that have game-breaking bugs or other very serious issues that made the actual review process virtually impossible.
Now, I know some will say this is just a 3/5-star rating system under a different name and it’s hard to argue against that. However, in our experience most games we get for review generally fall into these three main groups and describe well the experience that most of us have when playing games. And again, just because we think a game is a Masterpiece, Good or Poor – you may feel quite differently and that’s totally okay. And that’s why (at least for now) we’re starting with this system. However, it’s a living system so please let us know what you think as you read our reviews and if you feel we need to make some tweaks – please let us know.
And that’s about it for now. We hope this gave you some idea of our process and hopefully will make reading and understanding our reviews that much easier.