So, I know that on some review sites, a 4 could mean an amazing album because they never, ever give anything anywhere near 10. On others, they give nearly everything a 10, so an 8 could mean it’s absolutely shit. I’m not a fan of the numerical rating system, and will devise my own when I have the time and effort, but for now this inconsistency has prompted me to write my very own Rating Guidelines. If I gave something a 6.4, you can see what that means. You know, if you care.
We’re in the process of moving away from the Pitchfork-style 100-point rating system to a 20-point system (0-10, with rarely used half marks.) Of course, no old scores will be changed, as always.
9.5-10: Absolutely brilliant, perfect, a masterpiece. You don’t get any better than this. Even more must have.
9-9.5: Amazing, but not quite perfect. Still very enjoyable, and something that I’ll listen to/play/watch/etc repeatedly. Must have.
8-9: Great. Might have a few little flaws, but something in this range is still going to be worth listening to/playing/blah blah. Very highly recommended.
7-8: Good, with a few bad things. It could be a few bad tracks, or maybe it just isn’t in the same amazingness as the releases given higher ratings. Still highly recommended.
6-7: Okay, kind of. This is the low-end of the good range of the spectrum, but still good. A little enjoyable, a little boring and crap. Still recommended.
5-6: Nothing special, bland, a tad less than average. Possibly recommended, if it’s something that specifically piques your interest. Still some enjoyment to be found.
4-5: Stupid, boring and not very enjoyable at all. Might have one little factor that keeps it from lower, more embarrassing, rating. Not recommended in good conscience.
3-4: Crap. Bearable, but most definitely not enjoyable.
2-3: Even more crap. Only just bearable. Nothing good about it at all. The high end of the “so bad it’s funny” scale.
1-2: Unbearable. An embarrassment for the creator. Only ever recommended for laughing purposes, and even then, you can only laugh for so long before you start tearing at your eyes and ears.
0-1: So bad it’s too bad to be “so bad it’s funny”. The worst of the worst. Mind-blowingly bad. There is no worse than this.
Often, studios give me a copy of their game for review. It goes without saying that, while their generosity is hugely appreciated, it does not effect the score or tone of the review. To get in contact with me, be sure to email firstname.lastname@example.org.
And it should go without saying, but the text is just as important as the number. I use numbers because I like them, but if you want a real representation of my opinion on a game, the text is where it’s at.
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Matt McLeod (EiC)
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