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    (Original post by ape gone insane)
    really want to give moon another watch. Think i might go do that.
    you think?!

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    (Original post by Ape Gone Insane)
    You've brought up a good point about the reality of a high rating for a video game. It's true, I've never bought or played a game which was good which scored low or vice versa. But then I might be a little more involved and a little wiser than the casual gamer in terms of what games to purchase. The general consensus towards games from publications is more or less in concurrence. This game is either really good, mixed or it's terrible. But with films it's going to be so utterly scattered with one publication praising a film as an innovative work of art whilst another publication discounts it as utter trash. Who do you trust with a rating which may as well influence whether you end up watching it? You don't quite get that with gaming.
    For me, the biggest difference between playing games and watching films is in the way that you relate your opinion. With games, you tend to justify it, while with films, you tend to explain it. As that's about as clear as mud, I'll explain: take the original Project Gotham Racing, when it was released on Xbox. It had rave reviews and was extremely popular. I played the game and I didn't like it. I didn't like it because I'm not particularly fond of driving games and the whole "earn loads of kudos to buy a new car" concept doesn't really appeal. That's me justifying my opinion though; I'm telling you I didn't like it and giving reasons for this, rather than detracting from the game itself. The games I do actually rubbish tend to be for the reasons you detail: clunky controls and the like, which is almost always a commonly held view. Films, on the other hand, are a different matter. Take Piranha 3D. I thought it was awful. When I relate this to someone, I explain why it was awful: the acting was atrocious, the concept and plotline were ridiculous etc. The salient difference is this: with games, you're told someone didn't like a game without this taking away from the game itself (obviously only in the case of games considered to be good), whereas with films, someone will tell you that they didn't like the film, through rubbishing elements of the film itself

    (Original post by Ape Gone Insane)
    I wouldn't put much value on magazines. Most of the good ones have been discontinued. These 'official' magazines like the Playstation or Official Xbox Magazine tend to be heavily biased. Are they really going to give a poor rating to AAA first party game? We don't have official magazines for reviews for films, for example. The notion that we do for game companies seems a little ridiculous. Though there's the benefit of in-depth insight in the system's games, more so than an ordinary publication would receive.
    I think there's a difference between official console magazines and an official film magazine though. Official console magazines are only biased insofar as that they cannot consistently trounce what the company who owns the console puts out: i.e. an official Xbox magazine couldn't continually sneer at new peripherals and Microsoft games without finding itself ostracised. However, I wouldn't really say this has led to any heavy bias. I've never, for instance, seen a Sony game reviewed as excellent by a Playstation mag. that then turned out to be average at best. The benefits outweigh the negatives too, with discs featuring playable demos and exclusive access.

    An official film magazine would, presumably, have to be put out by one the major film companies. A company such as Microsoft doesn't produce all that many games in the space of a year. They're released on its console, but that's about the extent of the ties for the most part. Universal studios, on the other hand, produces a hell of a lot of films in a year. If they controlled a film review magazine, the direct interest they have in the film combined with how subjective film reviewing can be would lead to heavy bias to a laughable extent.

    (Original post by Ape Gone Insane)
    Ah yes, but does the average film viewer care for a review about an actor's acting ability? It's very subjective, I guess you could argue a gaming experience is subjective too. But not as subjective as a film experience. There are somwhat objective factors in a games review such as whether the controls are actually broken, whether the cover mechanics are a pain in the ass, whether loading is too long, how many glitches are present within the game and how many hours the sidequests roughly are. Not decision-changing factors, but important aspects of a games review.
    Even the most transient of film viewers is capable of picking up on piss-poor acting, in the same way that even the most transient of gamers is capable of picking up on a shoddy control system. Therefore, it's something that needs to be mentioned, if only briefly.

    This is true, but then this is even more of an argument in favour of a rating system for games reviews. They can be compartmentalised more than film reviews, as they all feature the same recurring, objective, elements. As such, you can put various headings such as "graphics", "gameplay", "controls" etc and rate them out of - for instance - five stars, and be much more objective than breaking a film review up in the same way.

    (Original post by Ape Gone Insane)
    I think the passing gamer does to be honest. The very language you see casual gamers or even those with a vague interest talking about games will be beyond than of what you'd expect. People do talk about how good the graphics were, how difficult the game was, the storyline and the linear/sandbox gameplay.

    The GTA thing is more branding than reviews. Would a single rating really stop a fan of the GTA series? He would look to see if the features he cherished and the experience he loved about the previous games in the series was present in this game. That's why fans get excited when Rockstar announce that they have jetpacks or parachutes or planes. And if he was to look at other games, he wouldn't look at ratings.

    The only way to compare GTA to Saints Row 2, for example, is to read about the gameplay features and mechanics. What difference is there in gameplay? What does Saints Row have that GTA doesn't? Which one has opted for realism? Which one has better multiplayer? Which has more things to do in the sandbox environment?

    It might just be me as what I'd class as a fairly hardcore gamer, but I find it hard to imagine any GTA fan opting for a similar game in the genre without really reading about the difference in the core aspects of each respective game. To do that really requires reading reviews where that comparison will be made.
    In all honesty, I think you're confusing hardcore allegiance to a series with someone simply being a fan of the series. If they were to glance at a game rating and see that the game was rated something like five or six out of ten (rather than the usual eight-ish), and saw a tagline that the game had been a real letdown, then they'd most likely be far more interested in what the magazine had to say about Saints Row or Just Cause. They'd probably also research more to see if the review was an anomaly. I agree with what you're saying in relation to hardcore fans, but I was setting my previous comment in the context of a casual gamer who's played enough to like the GTA series and tends to get the new game when it comes out, rather than someone who's into it enough to be a hardcore, die hard, fan of the series who won't be swayed.

    (Original post by Ape Gone Insane)
    I can think of several that don't use number systems or rating systems. By bigger sites I really meant the usual websites. Independent blogs which have a treasure trove of valuable opinion and interesting perspectives on various mediums don't tend to have ratings. Looking at IMDB, the overall rating is somewhat helpful but when reading user reviews, I couldn't give a toss what James Smith gave a film. What I'm instantly drawn to is the review. It's the same with something like Amazon.
    There aren't many casual gamers or film watchers who go to the trouble of trawling independent blogs though. This is true, but then the point is that casual watchers will skim imdb for the overall ratings, rather than delving into the reviews section of the site.

    Likewise, it's not really a good example of a review site/magazine existing as a commercial entity without the use of a rating system or appealing to the masses as the reviews are often written by people with no real knowledge of films, there is a rating system, and the real popularity of the site is the fact that it can provide someone browsing it with pretty much any information to do with any film: director, release date, gross, quotes etc, rather than just reviews.

    (Original post by Ape Gone Insane)
    And yeah, ultimately, there's still a rating system present. IGN, Gamespot, 1Up, GiantBomb, Empire and the collected publications on Metacritic and RottenTomatoes only serve to highlight the popularity of ratings. I, myself, regularly use Metacritic but really only as a portal to the actual reviews. I guess the irritating thing for me is when someone will cite a publication's rating as an indication of how good a game is. Or when people ridiculously compare one rating to another rating. Different games, different experiences. Attaching a number and then using that as the value for the game is silly. Look at Zero Punctuation for example. I don't think it has ratings (risking looking like a fool here) yet it's well known and has become famous with it's approach to reviewing. Though I guess it's become famous outside of casual gamer circles.
    Comparing one rating to another rating will always happen though. It's in people's natures to compare one game with another game, so they're also likely to compare review scores. It's the same as people comparing films. They're almost totally different, but they'll compare them on the basis of it being loosely in the same genre with a similar-ish plot.

    (Original post by Ape Gone Insane)
    Like I said in the games review thread, a much better system for video games would be 'Recommend a buy, rent it or do not recommend'. You seriously do not need more than that. And it effectively communicates the ultimate opinion of the reviewer. You don't need to differentiate between a 9.0 or a 8.9 because it comes down to either getting the game or not getting the game. A rating may tell you the difference between a great game or a good game but then that could be effectively communicated within words.
    There is a problem with this system, though. As you mentioned in a previous post in this thread, games represent a significant investment. If you have a few games released around the same time in a similar genre - i.e. Just Cause 2, Saints Row 2 and GTA 4, and they're all considered to be "buy it" worthy, the 'casual' gamer has to invest significant time in reading the reviews and differentiating the differences between them to decide which he'd most like to buy. Or be prepared to fork out a lot of cash for all three.

    (Original post by Ape Gone Insane)
    I'm not saying abandon ratings completely. A star system is a good system. But websites should really put writing before ratings. They should really let go of these out of 100 rating systems (agreeing with Phalanges' post here). Such a breakdown should be left to the actual review if someone wants it. If someone is quickly scanning for films, the star system makes more sense than the number system. There is a real danger of losing intelligent writing to dumbed down reviews and fixations with ratings.
    I don't agree that there's a danger of "dumbing down" by using ratings. Yes, some people will use the ratings rather than reading the writing, but these people wouldn't have read the writing in the first place. In terms of the magazine/review site itself, they have the same amount of column inches to write an intelligent review. Categorising it into a rating system in the end just helps to relate this to the reader in bite-size portions. The ratings at the end aren't detracting from the writing by depriving it of space, or encouraging the author to fill up the space with crap and just focus on the ratings.

    I dislike the star system. It's fine in the context of a magazine or site, for example when 4/5 stars means "good", but the problem comes when the system is quoted on the back of a game case or DVD box. If you're familiar with the publication/site, you'll know what 4/5 stars means. If you're not, it can suggest something is better than it is. Likewise, this leads to the danger of dumbing down as it leads to films and games producers using the publications/sites which accredit their work with the most stars. This, in reality, leads to a proliferation of star ratings from The Sun and Nuts magazine. :nothing:

    (Original post by Ape Gone Insane)
    I think the out of a 100 systems, or the letter grading or even the '8.9' decimal systems are pandering to the minority (and not the majority) who enjoy a breakdown than the masses who just want a simple answer eg. 5 stars, 4 stars, 3 stars.
    True, but then it's a compromise between the total simplicity of 3, 4 or 5 stars and the complexity of having no rating system whatsoever.
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    (Original post by zjs)
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    For me, the biggest difference between playing games and watching films is in the way that you relate your opinion. With games, you tend to justify it, while with films, you tend to explain it. As that's about as clear as mud, I'll explain: take the original Project Gotham Racing, when it was released on Xbox. It had rave reviews and was extremely popular. I played the game and I didn't like it. I didn't like it because I'm not particularly fond of driving games and the whole "earn loads of kudos to buy a new car" concept doesn't really appeal. That's me justifying my opinion though; I'm telling you I didn't like it and giving reasons for this, rather than detracting from the game itself. The games I do actually rubbish tend to be for the reasons you detail: clunky controls and the like, which is almost always a commonly held view. Films, on the other hand, are a different matter. Take Piranha 3D. I thought it was awful. When I relate this to someone, I explain why it was awful: the acting was atrocious, the concept and plotline were ridiculous etc. The salient difference is this: with games, you're told someone didn't like a game without this taking away from the game itself (obviously only in the case of games considered to be good), whereas with films, someone will tell you that they didn't like the film, through rubbishing elements of the film itself



    I think there's a difference between official console magazines and an official film magazine though. Official console magazines are only biased insofar as that they cannot consistently trounce what the company who owns the console puts out: i.e. an official Xbox magazine couldn't continually sneer at new peripherals and Microsoft games without finding itself ostracised. However, I wouldn't really say this has led to any heavy bias. I've never, for instance, seen a Sony game reviewed as excellent by a Playstation mag. that then turned out to be average at best. The benefits outweigh the negatives too, with discs featuring playable demos and exclusive access.

    An official film magazine would, presumably, have to be put out by one the major film companies. A company such as Microsoft doesn't produce all that many games in the space of a year. They're released on its console, but that's about the extent of the ties for the most part. Universal studios, on the other hand, produces a hell of a lot of films in a year. If they controlled a film review magazine, the direct interest they have in the film combined with how subjective film reviewing can be would lead to heavy bias to a laughable extent.



    Even the most transient of film viewers is capable of picking up on piss-poor acting, in the same way that even the most transient of gamers is capable of picking up on a shoddy control system. Therefore, it's something that needs to be mentioned, if only briefly.

    This is true, but then this is even more of an argument in favour of a rating system for games reviews. They can be compartmentalised more than film reviews, as they all feature the same recurring, objective, elements. As such, you can put various headings such as "graphics", "gameplay", "controls" etc and rate them out of - for instance - five stars, and be much more objective than breaking a film review up in the same way.



    In all honesty, I think you're confusing hardcore allegiance to a series with someone simply being a fan of the series. If they were to glance at a game rating and see that the game was rated something like five or six out of ten (rather than the usual eight-ish), and saw a tagline that the game had been a real letdown, then they'd most likely be far more interested in what the magazine had to say about Saints Row or Just Cause. They'd probably also research more to see if the review was an anomaly. I agree with what you're saying in relation to hardcore fans, but I was setting my previous comment in the context of a casual gamer who's played enough to like the GTA series and tends to get the new game when it comes out, rather than someone who's into it enough to be a hardcore, die hard, fan of the series who won't be swayed.



    There aren't many casual gamers or film watchers who go to the trouble of trawling independent blogs though. This is true, but then the point is that casual watchers will skim imdb for the overall ratings, rather than delving into the reviews section of the site.

    Likewise, it's not really a good example of a review site/magazine existing as a commercial entity without the use of a rating system or appealing to the masses as the reviews are often written by people with no real knowledge of films, there is a rating system, and the real popularity of the site is the fact that it can provide someone browsing it with pretty much any information to do with any film: director, release date, gross, quotes etc, rather than just reviews.



    Comparing one rating to another rating will always happen though. It's in people's natures to compare one game with another game, so they're also likely to compare review scores. It's the same as people comparing films. They're almost totally different, but they'll compare them on the basis of it being loosely in the same genre with a similar-ish plot.



    There is a problem with this system, though. As you mentioned in a previous post in this thread, games represent a significant investment. If you have a few games released around the same time in a similar genre - i.e. Just Cause 2, Saints Row 2 and GTA 4, and they're all considered to be "buy it" worthy, the 'casual' gamer has to invest significant time in reading the reviews and differentiating the differences between them to decide which he'd most like to buy. Or be prepared to fork out a lot of cash for all three.



    I don't agree that there's a danger of "dumbing down" by using ratings. Yes, some people will use the ratings rather than reading the writing, but these people wouldn't have read the writing in the first place. In terms of the magazine/review site itself, they have the same amount of column inches to write an intelligent review. Categorising it into a rating system in the end just helps to relate this to the reader in bite-size portions. The ratings at the end aren't detracting from the writing by depriving it of space, or encouraging the author to fill up the space with crap and just focus on the ratings.

    I dislike the star system. It's fine in the context of a magazine or site, for example when 4/5 stars means "good", but the problem comes when the system is quoted on the back of a game case or DVD box. If you're familiar with the publication/site, you'll know what 4/5 stars means. If you're not, it can suggest something is better than it is. Likewise, this leads to the danger of dumbing down as it leads to films and games producers using the publications/sites which accredit their work with the most stars. This, in reality, leads to a proliferation of star ratings from The Sun and Nuts magazine. :nothing:



    True, but then it's a compromise between the total simplicity of 3, 4 or 5 stars and the complexity of having no rating system whatsoever.
    Wow rep for the effort typing that!

    EDIT: I would if I could
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    (Original post by cambo211)
    I found Kermode on spoilers an interesting listen on how a reviewer approaches spoilers:

    Interesting, but I disagree with a few of his points.

    First and foremost: I don't think you have to mention a plot point because it kicks off events. You can simply mention that there's a devastating occurrence or words to that effect. It takes more effort to craft, but it can be done.

    Second, when he talks about 127 Hours and Franco
    Spoiler:
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    cutting his arm off
    I would class that as a spoiler. Yes, he got out and yes, he's done publicity tours, but that doesn't mean the average person knows how he gets out.

    Of course, both objections are defeated by the rebuttal that you don't have to read a review if you haven't watched a film. Kermode's reviews tend to fall more into this category of seeing what other people thought of the film after you've seen it. Obviously, the problem with this view is if you're using reviews to decide whether or not to watch the film in the first place.
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    (Original post by cadaeibfeceh)
    Wow rep for the effort typing that!

    EDIT: I would if I could
    I didn't think I'd actually written that much. :erm:

    It's fine, just save it until you can! :wink2:
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    A Thread for me
    Has anyone here seen The Troll Hunter by André Øvredal, Norwegain film came out last year, thought it was pretty impressive and well worth the watch
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    Anyone recommend me a good horror/thriller film to watch? I've watched a fair amount of them and I don't really find them scary. So if you know any that make you jump/are scary then please tell me. Thanks!
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    :zomg: So much to talk about.

    (Original post by Ape Gone Insane)
    Yeah, it only gets better from that episode. I think it's great tbh. There's nothing quite like it which furthers my appreciation of it as a whole. I don't really notice the dialogue or anything, I'm too immersed too notice really. And yeah, Aiden Gillen is awesome as Littlefinger. He really elevates the scenes he's in especially that little dialogue sparring in the Throne Room with Varys (bald guy).

    Rome is apparently really good and had a really high budget but a short run. Had it on my watchlist. Didn't you like it that much?

    Is that like the Godfather in Rome? Jeremy Irons and Derek Jacobi. :holmes:
    Episode 9 was unbelievably good, I was so impressed with everything about it (except one minor niggle about the dwarf's new lover, who was incredibly badly written compared to how nuanced everyone else is). But apart from that, a brilliant way to spend an hour. It really feels like the investment for the first half of the season is being paid off, which is good. Also, the scenes have got a lot better as the series has progressed as well - just look at how good the Khalesi scenes are now compared to earlier episodes where they were utterly uninspiring. Good stuff.

    I would say that Game of Thrones has the best understanding of is how to build up to a crescendo. And that's a big compliment, as if there's one thing Lost guys were masters of it was how to build a show around the final 60 minutes.

    I only watched a few episodes of Rome, but the impression I got was that it was just another one of these interchangeable histories promising "Violence! Sex! War!". Going off the adverts the Borgias looks as if it was shot completely in soft focus, but Irons is a pretty great actor.

    (Original post by Ape Gone Insane)
    Why is that occupying space on your hard drive? Forgot to flush the virtual toilet? :pierre:

    I mean, the original trilogy was flawless. Even Phantom Menace had podracing and Revenge of the Sith had a descent into the dark side with fangasmic lightsaber duelling in the backdrop of a flawless John Williams soundtrack.

    Attack of the Clones was a plank of wood with a ponytail travelling from nowhere to nowhere in an attempt to get nothing done.
    Because then the collection wouldn't be complete! You don't just delete Godfather III and pretend it never happened, and that is why the prequels must remain!

    I'm having a lot of fun with all of this new metadata on my films. Sorting by year released is very interesting... any guesses on the oldest film I have?

    (Original post by zjs)
    ...
    (Original post by Ape Gone Insane)
    ...
    You both make some excellent points about ratings (and Abiraleft too!), and rather than try and dissect all of your words I'll just expand on my views here a bit.

    Zjs, I agree with what you're saying about the need of ratings in commercial reviewing for practicality purposes (incidentally, in response to a later point that everybody has ratings, that isn't quite true - A. O. Scott, as far as I'm aware, does not provide a rating). Ultimately when I'm asked by an editor to give a rating I of course do, although with a little sadness as I know that far more people are going to read a review if it has 1, 4 or 5 stars, because they tend to be the more interesting reviews.

    However, as well as the context of my post being about games it should also be pointed out that my post was about amateur reviews as well. This is really integral to what I think about ratings - they interfere with the development of a writer. I've seen amateur reviewers in real life and online start or place unnecessary importance on the rating they think a film has, and that is incredibly disruptive both for an individual film and overall. I recently reviewed Point Blank; coming out of the cinema I'd have given it five stars, however once I started analysing it through writing it was much closer to four. If I had the rating at the forefront of my mind then the review would never have been as informed as it was. The writing should dictate the rating, not the other way round - and with the increasing popularity of review aggregators this is something that some people never learn. Look at how this entire conversation spawned; Akaten posted that he thought X-Men was a 7.3, which is pretty hard for people to decipher. However when he they went on in a later post to explain some of the film's failings, I think we can all agree that was a far more interesting post than a number.

    I would disagree with your views about the place of a complex rating system. I actually think the best form of rating devised was Ebert and Siskel's thumbs up; it gave an immediate sense of their thoughts about it. Really, five points is all the complexity you need. Any more and people won't be able to relate and understand the numerical values. If you want more complexity, then you really need to read someone's thoughts on it.

    When it comes to videogames, I can't really profess myself to be much of an expert. I have played far fewer games than watched movies, and it's pretty rare that I've played a video game I haven't liked. It's also pretty rare, it has to be said, that I've ever used a videogame for anything more than simple accessible fun. So I probably know far less about the technicalities of reviewing in this area than either of you (although it is something that I would be interested in getting more into). One thing I will say is that I do disagree that you should break up the elements of a game when reviewing it. This is akin to how a poor game will treat story elements, by divorcing it from the gameplay and dumping it all into cutscenes. A good game integrates the story into every aspect of the game. If you were to break a film review down into areas such as cinematography, editing, acting, direction, script, etc., it would be wholly derivative because all of the elements are interwoven. This is something that I think many videogame reviewers do not appreciate.

    You both raise many more interesting points, but I figured rather than spending four hours addressing everything I'd use much less time to try and move sidelong into the conversation. :p:
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    (Original post by Gowrav)
    Anyone recommend me a good horror/thriller film to watch? I've watched a fair amount of them and I don't really find them scary. So if you know any that make you jump/are scary then please tell me. Thanks!
    Have you seen [Rec]? If you looking for something recent Julia's Eyes might still be on at a cinema near you, and that has a couple of good scary moments.
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    (Original post by Ape Gone Insane)
    Really want to give Moon another watch. Think I might go do that.
    I want to watch that

    still haven't seen it .. despite knowing about it for some time now, I even know the plot

    I need some good films to watch .. have spare time now to do so.
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    :facepalm2:

    I'm not even going to attempt joining in on the Ape/Phalanges/Zjs discussion.
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    (Original post by Gowrav)
    Anyone recommend me a good horror/thriller film to watch? I've watched a fair amount of them and I don't really find them scary. So if you know any that make you jump/are scary then please tell me. Thanks!
    Yeahh Rec. Drag me to hell if you want a bad horror film to laugh at and Carriers, which is quite good too

    And or The Crazies, it's alright
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    (Original post by Phalanges)
    ..
    I'm having a lot of fun with all of this new metadata on my films. Sorting by year released is very interesting... any guesses on the oldest film I have?
    a Charlie Chaplin film .. or am I too far out..
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    Beginning a mission to rewatch all the Harry Potters before July 15th. Starting with Philosopher's Stone tonight. Seemed like a good idea when it came to me but I feel it may just proceed to anger me.
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    (Original post by getfunky!)
    a Charlie Chaplin film .. or am I too far out..
    Older than that. :p:
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    (Original post by Phalanges)
    However, as well as the context of my post being about games it should also be pointed out that my post was about amateur reviews as well. This is really integral to what I think about ratings - they interfere with the development of a writer. I've seen amateur reviewers in real life and online start or place unnecessary importance on the rating they think a film has, and that is incredibly disruptive both for an individual film and overall. I recently reviewed Point Blank; coming out of the cinema I'd have given it five stars, however once I started analysing it through writing it was much closer to four. If I had the rating at the forefront of my mind then the review would never have been as informed as it was. The writing should dictate the rating, not the other way round - and with the increasing popularity of review aggregators this is something that some people never learn. Look at how this entire conversation spawned; Akaten posted that he thought X-Men was a 7.3, which is pretty hard for people to decipher. However when he they went on in a later post to explain some of the film's failings, I think we can all agree that was a far more interesting post than a number.
    That's more a problem with the amateur reviewer themselves than the system, though. I've written reviews myself, which featured numerical ratings. The point is to focus on the game or film and really go into detail on all the shortcomings and good bits of the thing, taking care to make these short, sharp, amusing, a pleasure to read and ensuring that any quirks or sparks of genius are highlighted.

    The rating comes after you've watched the film/played the game, considered it and written the review. It's at this point that you're really ready to start trying to put a number on "how" good it was and compare it to other films or games. Doing this in reverse is just nonsensical, imo.

    (Original post by Phalanges)
    I would disagree with your views about the place of a complex rating system. I actually think the best form of rating devised was Ebert and Siskel's thumbs up; it gave an immediate sense of their thoughts about it. Really, five points is all the complexity you need. Any more and people won't be able to relate and understand the numerical values. If you want more complexity, then you really need to read someone's thoughts on it.
    Personally, I think around eight or, because it's numerically a 'nicer' number, ten, options. The issue with five is it leaves you with "awful", "bad", "average", "good" and "great". There's gaping gaps between "average" and "good" and "good" and "great". Those extra options allow you to distinguish the very good from the good and the excellent from the very good. It may seem finickity, but it allows an 'objective' element of distinguishing just how good a film is.

    Take things like the Oscars. These are awards designed to distinguish films and mark the sublime from the excellent. So too are ratings: the system out of 100 attempts to do just this, for example. The problem comes with the fact that this system is really only beneficial to those that care a lot about films, and these people are more concerned with written elements of reviews than numerical ratings.

    The crucial difference between numerical ratings and the content of a review? Comparing films that are good. Distinguishing them from each other in a way that someone can see instantaneously, rather than having to pick through an entire series of reviews to grasp.

    (Original post by Phalanges)
    When it comes to videogames, I can't really profess myself to be much of an expert. I have played far fewer games than watched movies, and it's pretty rare that I've played a video game I haven't liked. It's also pretty rare, it has to be said, that I've ever used a videogame for anything more than simple accessible fun. So I probably know far less about the technicalities of reviewing in this area than either of you (although it is something that I would be interested in getting more into).
    I think it all depends on how many games you get through. If you play a lot of games, it's the same as watching a lot of films: sooner or later, you'll come across one you don't like.

    Generally, games are much more about having fun and being as accessible as possible. There are, however, many different varieties of games, and not just in genres. There are more or less involved games, solo or MMORPG games etc and this leads to a difference between games: there are the pick-up-and-play games like GTA or Mario Kart as a distinct entity from games such as Fallout, which require significant time to be invested to understand what's going on. By the same token, there are cutscene-laden graphic orgies and rudimentary looking games that are all about the enjoyment factor.

    (Original post by Phalanges)
    One thing I will say is that I do disagree that you should break up the elements of a game when reviewing it. This is akin to how a poor game will treat story elements, by divorcing it from the gameplay and dumping it all into cutscenes. A good game integrates the story into every aspect of the game. If you were to break a film review down into areas such as cinematography, editing, acting, direction, script, etc., it would be wholly derivative because all of the elements are interwoven. This is something that I think many videogame reviewers do not appreciate.
    Elements of a game are less inextricable interwoven than those of a film, though. I'm not saying that you should separate these elements in the space of the review to the point that they're separate headlines. I think you should address them in the same way one addresses various "headings" within an essay: dealing with each in turn. They're distinct enough to merit this treatment. Take the graphics of a game, this is an element that you can certainly see in and of themselves, rather than in the context of a plotline.

    You address the controls as part of the gameplay, but that's a distinct element that you can rate in and of itself. If the controls are slick and let you do exactly what you want to do, you can give them four or five out of five stars. If they're clunky and leave you blind, or where you don't wish to be, you can reflect this in the ratings too. The review space gives you the chance to expand on this; explaining why/where they're good/bad.
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    Errol Morris' name alone is enough to make me want to see this.
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    (Original post by Phalanges)


    Errol Morris' name alone is enough to make me want to see this.
    I like that The Sun managed to turn it into an opportunity for some raunchy photos. :sigh:

    Looks very watchable though, I was engrossed by the trailer!
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    X Men First Class was quite possibly the most fun I've had at the cinema since Inglourious Basterds. Fantastic stuff, despite being a popcorn movie.

    I'm in Oxford, so it was quite fun sniggering at some of the locations and the fact that one of the colleges became a pub.

    Still, thought it was an awesome film. Up there with the first one. Bloody good soundtrack too.

    And the whole cinema laughed when:

    Spoiler:
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    Hugh Jackman cameoed. :rofl:


    Although something that didn't sit quite right with me was:

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    Why Mystique went with Magneto at the end. Xavier was pretty hurt and she did talk to him then ditched him right off? A scene with Xavier in the wheelchair and a sad goodbye may have been a more rounded option.


    Michael Fassbender = :coma:
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    (Original post by Phalanges)
    Have you seen [Rec]? If you looking for something recent Julia's Eyes might still be on at a cinema near you, and that has a couple of good scary moments.
    (Original post by lukejoshjedi)
    Yeahh Rec. Drag me to hell if you want a bad horror film to laugh at and Carriers, which is quite good too

    And or The Crazies, it's alright
    Thanks guys. i was actually thinking of watching this as well
 
 
 
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