A good review is unbiased

As I sat in the plane on the way to Austin... well, it was headed to LA, where I connected with a flight to Denver, where I once again connected to a flight that this time actually flew me to Austin. Austin Game Developers Conference was soon to start and I was ready to greet the conference with my fortitude in one hand and a business card in the other.

I was writing the last few pages in my book on the plane, which is also about computer games, when I realized the book was actually almost complete. As I had written in a previous blog, it sometimes it is difficult to actually finish a project. What overshadowed that concern now was the excitement that I would be completing another item off my checklist of items to do in my life.

Taking a brief break, as I wasn't used to the physical writing, I took out the only good magazine available on the plane, the first edition of (insert game magazine name here) that I had brought with me. The magazine is for massive multiplayer online game readers. Flipping through the pages, I came to the Warhammer Online section after quickly passing by Age of Conan. I knew enough about AoC and I was currently a community manager for WAR, so was particularly interested in what the writer had to say about the game I have been watching for the past three years.

The magazine was put together fantastically, yet I can't help but feel I missed something in the review of the Warhammer Online article. Something that I most definitely caught while reading about Age of Conan. It wasn't until I had my Quiznos sub in the Denver airport that it dawned on me. Nothing is perfect, and yet this article essentially made out WAR as if it was the second coming. Too bad the game isn't quite getting the level of publicity that AoC received, a game that has so many problems it's a miracle there aren't more fans leaving it than there already are.

WAR isn't perfect, but when I read reviews that don't cover a game in a balanced perspective, I begin to worry. Take a look at magazine reviews from ten years ago, and while they were sometimes biased as well, it was often with at least some good criticism that made you realize the game had limitations. Articles, whether you find them online, in a book, or in a magazine, just aren't the same quality and depth as they used to be.

As far as WAR is concerned, I don't care how much I love the game I still want to know all the negative elements about it. Without understanding the negatives that need to be included in reviews, the game will do its own job of turning me off once I play it. (insert game magazine name here) is a great magazine, but it shows trends in the industry that we should really be looking at changing.

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