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dnuggs40
05-24-2010, 09:31 AM
So got my monthly issue yesterday and surprise! Din's Curse review was in there :p

Was nice to see this game reviewed by them as they don't normally review games this low on the radar. Decent review too, talked about the games randomization as it's strong point and not just the fact is was random but how it creates a feeling of "anything can happen" which in my opinion is more important than just making things random. They did of course bring up the fact it's a lower budget game, but even then they said the graphic do grow on you because the game has it's charms. Low points included the animations and they said they felt the game get's boring after a few weeks.

Overall they did seem pleased though, and gave it a 78% (or somewhere near that).

While I think probably a few of the people here would be disappointed with the score, I think it's nice for Soldak to get some positive recognition from "main stream" game reviewing publications.

udm
05-25-2010, 01:08 AM
I think 78% is fair. Some of the greatest games didn't get 90% and above - Arcanum for one, Deus Ex is another. It is in my opinion that most games scoring 90% and above these days are rubbish.

Jorlen
05-25-2010, 10:30 AM
How is PC gamer as a magazine? Haven't read one in ages, but if they are reviewing games like DC then I need to start considering it.

dnuggs40
05-25-2010, 11:50 AM
I have always enjoyed it...they still have some nice editorials and sometimes even have exclusive stories (like this month Dues Ex 3 and XCOM) so occasionally I get info before it hits the web. And they have been reviewing a larger variety of games lately I think.

I dunno...I guess it's just nice to have something to read when I'm on the can :p

Jorlen
05-25-2010, 12:56 PM
I've been looking to sub to a magazine lately and it may as well be PC gamer. $35 for a year (canada) not bad at all.

It will be nice to have a few more male-oriented magazines lying around the apartment for a change :)

DeathKnight1728
05-25-2010, 02:15 PM
I've only subscribed to the Gamespot magazines that they give at the store. I hated them with a passion because all the games they showed were (imho) crap. I found out about mount and blade through just scrolling, that was a catch. Did the same for Dark Eden. Luckily I found Depths of Peril in Bestbuy where i live. But those were all random occurences.

My question is does PC Gamer just show the popular games, or more indie, or a mix of both?

I want to know because alot of my favorite games recently have been games that most people havent heard of.

udm
05-25-2010, 02:31 PM
More towards the popular games, but it's featured indie games as well - though they're given less space than the big titles.

PCG has IMHO always been trash since...I don't know how many years ago, maybe slightly less than a decade. I believe many of the editors there are now of the younger generation, which means you will get more gravy and less meat in your reviews.

Personally, I don't believe in reviewers anymore. Gaming journalism has lost its last shred of credibility for me. I understand it's one thing to have an opinion, and I can respect that, but the turning point is how the mainstream titles - especially those published by big publishers - get so much attention, simply because of aggressive marketing. Furthermore, reviews these days are often just drivel on the game's aesthestics rather than dissecting it. Why, I don't even remember the last time I read a review that actually gave me an analytical coverage of the game's qualities.

Then there's also the debate on how much time is needed to play any game before a just review is in order. Of course, the trend seems to be that reviewers dedicate only 5 minutes to the less renowned titles (that is figuratively speaking, they do not really spend only 5 minutes, but you get the idea).

dnuggs40
05-25-2010, 02:47 PM
I've been reading them for over a decade...it's still a good magazine. I think you guys take this stuff far too seriously. I read reviews all the time from all sorts of places (PC Gamer, giantbomb, gamespot, gametrailers, gamespy, rpgwatch, indie sites, ect, ect) and every single review I read has some insight into a particular game.

But this mindset I read (reviews are worthless) is very prevalent on the web these days...I just don't get it. Half the time after reading a few reviews I can pretty much guess most aspects of a game, and more times than not when I finally do get the game it's pretty much exactly as I thought (based on my research). I find reading reviews extremely helpful in purchasing games to be honest...and I really don't see how they are any more or less useful than they always have been (gaming over 20 years here).

A review is like any other tool...you just gotta know how to use them :cool:

"My question is does PC Gamer just show the popular games, or more indie, or a mix of both?"

It does have both, but focuses on more popular/anticipated games more. But based on your post I wouldn't recommend PC Gamer to you.

Jorlen
05-25-2010, 03:09 PM
While I don't doubt that some of these big review sites are often "encouraged" by the big publishers to tip the scale a bit, they are still useful, particularly if you combine several sources, as Dnuggs mentions.

The gaming industry has exploded in recent years, and with publishers dealing with billions and having to please shareholders, it's no surprise that there is some corruption going on. They will of course deny it, but there are several indications that publishers are encouraging and sometimes even threatening editors / game sites to give favourable reviews.

Despite that sort of behavior, you can usually get a solid opinion on a game with combined reviews and I often will read plenty in the user reviews section as well. Most of the time, the average user score is close to the average metacritic score, but other times there is a discrepancy and that's where it pays to read into it further.

I do however agree that AAA titles often get way too much attention, while the indie scene is neglected. Thankfully there are a lot of decent indie review sites doing some good work and they're not too difficult to find.

Shadow
05-25-2010, 03:21 PM
I would like to post something about this review. Are you sure it was 78%? What month PC Gamer is it? And can someone pull out a good quote?

As for reviews in general, I find that some reviewers write really well and some write so bad they can make the best game ever sound extremely boring. I almost always play a demo or use word of mouth as my primary means of deciding to buy a game. However, if I do use reviews, I usually read a bunch of them to get a good feel instead of just one person's bias.

dnuggs40
05-25-2010, 03:23 PM
When I get home I will post the exact score and a few of the more positive quotes...

Shadow
05-25-2010, 03:28 PM
Thanks dnuggs40.

dnuggs40
05-25-2010, 08:18 PM
Lively Affliction

Towns are easy come, easy go in the surprising world of Din's Curse by Desslock

It doesn't shatter the dungeon crawler mold embodied by Diablo, but Din's Curse does break preconceptions about static environments in action-RPGs. It's a straight forward hack-'n-slash RPG, where you're based in a small town with a handful of taciturn NPCs and descend into a local dungeon for loot and leveling. But unlike typical dungeon crawlers, which allow you to proceed at your own pace, Din's Curse is in constant motion.

The dynamic world is definitely Din's strongest feature. Each randomly generated town and dungeon can be subject to a wide range of potential conditions, such as being prone to spider infestation or reduced visibility due to fog. You're obliged to complete dungeon expedition tasks for Din, the vengeful deity who has conscripted you to his service, and a few stock vendors. Solve enough local quests and you'll save the town and travel to the next one, which will be burdened by it's own random conditions and woes. But time is always of the essence, and failing to complete quests in a timely manner will make tasks harder, as creatures can grow progressively stronger by preying on their neighbors. Unchecked, they can cause you to fail your mission or even destroy whole towns.

There's a rare sense that anything can happen, as you're constantly surprised by events. You can smash out support columns to bury foes under walls, monsters can escape the dungeon and invade the town, and once a single zombie wandered into a town and zombified all the NPCs inside. Creatures are well designed and sufficiently varied in their attacks to require distinct countermeasures, as you'll be hunted by invisible stalkers, bezapped by Liches and face elemental blobs that split into two smaller offspring when dispatched. In keeping with 30 years of genre tradition for "Roguelikes," there's an optional hardcore mode that makes character death permanent.

It's a low-budget games from a small developer so the graphics aren't flashy. Spell effect are rudimentary and animations sometimes feel lethargic, but Din's has enough character that even the art grows on you. Eventually it feels repeditive, but the quantity of character and dungeon permutations is sufficient to engage even jaded genre veterans for weeks.

76%


Ok, it was 76% :P

Shadow
05-26-2010, 09:46 AM
Cool, thanks again dnuggs40.

udm
05-26-2010, 03:44 PM
While I don't doubt that some of these big review sites are often "encouraged" by the big publishers to tip the scale a bit, they are still useful, particularly if you combine several sources, as Dnuggs mentions.

The gaming industry has exploded in recent years, and with publishers dealing with billions and having to please shareholders, it's no surprise that there is some corruption going on. They will of course deny it, but there are several indications that publishers are encouraging and sometimes even threatening editors / game sites to give favourable reviews.

Despite that sort of behavior, you can usually get a solid opinion on a game with combined reviews and I often will read plenty in the user reviews section as well. Most of the time, the average user score is close to the average metacritic score, but other times there is a discrepancy and that's where it pays to read into it further.

I do however agree that AAA titles often get way too much attention, while the indie scene is neglected. Thankfully there are a lot of decent indie review sites doing some good work and they're not too difficult to find.

The last time I did that was with Bioshock, and it was a sorely regrettable purchase ;). Hell, I don't regret many things in life, and buying Bioshock was one of them.

So the PCG review is by Desslock eh? Interesting...

Jorlen
05-26-2010, 04:40 PM
The last time I did that was with Bioshock, and it was a sorely regrettable purchase ;). Hell, I don't regret many things in life, and buying Bioshock was one of them.

So the PCG review is by Desslock eh? Interesting...

Well some games just won't do it for some of us even if they're scored 100% across the board.

I didn't like Bioshock as well, nor did I enjoy Mass Effect 2 or Dragon Age: Origins, even though all of these games were scored high. That's just the reality of things.

No matter how good a review is, the only way you'll truly know if you enjoy a game, is if you take the risk and try it out yourself.

Generally speaking however, they're an excellent guideline. And when it comes to genres / sub-genres that I really enjoy, I can usually forgive the flaws, and some games I play score below 60% on the meta average.

dnuggs40
05-27-2010, 09:38 AM
...the only way you'll truly know if you enjoy a game, is if you take the risk and try it out yourself.

I think this point is lost on a lot of today's generation. Almost everything in life you purchase has some risk involved...buying a house, car, and even something as simple as going to a restaurant and ordering a meal. So much is taken for granted these days in my opinion.

I visit a lot of forums and the mentality kinda saddens me...especially when it's used as a justification for piracy. People tend to say things like "well I might not like it"...and I can't help but think "yeah...and your point?". All you can do as a consumer is do your due diligence and research the products you plan to buy the best you can. And with video games there's really no excuse in my book...there's just way too much information out there. Professional reviews, player reviews, previews, demos, promotional videos, youtube player videos, forums, ect, ect.

I think I have purchased well over 200 games in my lifetime, and very few had really been a mistake...and even then that's the risk. Some games just may not resonate with me regardless of how well it's received in other circles.

PixelLord
05-27-2010, 10:35 AM
Well, at least Soldak has a 30 day money back guarantee (in case someone doesn't prefer the game - which is doubtful if they like having fun. Does EA do that? :)