Archive for November, 2007|Monthly archive page

Gamespot’s Video Review of Unreal Tournament 3

In The Gaming Community on November 28, 2007 at 5:02 am

I couldn’t help but notice that Jeff Gerstmann’s video review of Unreal Tournament 3 is quite lackluster, to put it in kinder terms than most. Here we have a situation that seemingly contradicts itself: ranked at a “Great” 8.5, and the video review given by a journalistic professional in the gaming industry, Mr. Gerstmann simply cannot seem to convince himself that his time is well spent in front of the camera.

The review starts on an apathetic tone and remains consistent throughout with the reviewer resorting to phrases “and stuff,” and, “things like that,” rather than putting forth the effort to fully describe the game he’s supposed to be reviewing. For a professional reviewer as he, I do not think it too much to offer additional details rather than trailing off at the end of a sentence. To add insult to the established tone, Jeff attempts to justify his apathy in stating that Unreal Tournament 3 is not significantly different enough from its predecessors, writing off most of the changes as minimal, superficial, or entirely cosmetic in nature. This sort of thinking forces one to wonder exactly what he was expecting in this game; Unreal is Unreal after all, and it is the largely undisputed king in a genre it helped establish. Additionally, while he does go as far as to point out the minimal changes in, for example, the jumping rules, his review completely omits the new and much tauted “Unreal Warfare” gameplay mode, where much of the game’s new content lies.

 While he is correct in a sort of minimal, superficial kind of way, his attitude and the tone of the piece reminds one of a review of a Madden game or other such game with new editions being released each year, suggesting he is somehow tired of game with only four significant editions released in the past eight or so years. This sort of implied comparison isn’t even remotely fair, nor is the idea that the game itself isn’t enough of an upgrade. This thinking isn’t even-handed as well, seeing as how Halo 3 offered a similar amount of similarity to its predecessors, yet received a much higher score on the site.

 Now, I’m not suggesting that Unreal Tournament 3 should receive a higher score based upon some matter of random comparison, but it does just go to show how little consistency and professional objectivity Gamespot possesses these days.