Sorry for the delay folks. I meant to post this blog sooner but ran into unforeseen circumstances that were in no way related to my two playthroughs of Mass Effect 3. Honestly.
As many of you may not know, I recently received promotion to WikiGameGuides Reviews Editor-in-Chief. I’ll wait for you to wipe the shock off your face… … … Don’t worry, the position equates to very little in the grand scheme of things, at least for the time being. Hell, I didn’t even get a nametag or placard, but I have been granted administrative privileges, allowing me to post insightful/informational content to WGG’s homepage. Additionally, I am also in charge of any future reviews.
So where does WikiGameGuides go from here? Our next and current step remains the application process for Metacritic. As of the latest podcast, the paper work’s been sent off. Now we play the waiting game. But seeing as this whole venture reflects the hard work of Dan and John, they call the shots. The lengthy procedure of earning a coveted spot on the aggregate website falls to John selling the business. I reside more as a blank slate to bounce ideas off.
However, John has given me permission to decide the format of the reviews that will be posted on Metacritic *knock on wood*. We are not prohibiting reviews from the community blog, but should you want your work featured on Metacritic, you must follow the established layout. This method underlies the need to maintain a cohesive look for the website and also distinguish the official reviews from the community reviews. Adam Page has proven himself capable of collecting his thoughts into a well flowing piece of journalism, so I suggest you start there. He has detailed an intricate review guide (to be posted soon) for rivaling those of bigger named sites like Giant Bomb, IGN, or Game Informer.
The structure is simple to comprehend. You must write your review in a paragraph arrangement. However, no one wants to click a link and be greeted with a wall of text (like the one you’re reading). It’s often intimidating. To break up the flow, insert several pictures every couple paragraphs. This gives the review a professional look.
Three more things you should know if you want to contribute official reviews:
Now if you are currently reading this, not bored to tears, and believe yourself capable of composing official reviews for WGG, here’s your first assignment. You have until the first week of April to collect your thoughts into a comprehensive and coherent review using the approved format. That means the version tested, several body paragraphs elaborating on the game’s faults/merits, and the assigned score (out of 5) located at the bottom. I’ve provided a healthy list of US releases due out in the coming weeks. UK release dates may differ.
March 12 – March 18:
March 19 – March 25:
March 26 – April 1:
However, feel free to post a review of a previously released game. DO NOT COPY AND PASTE A REVIEW from another site, even if it’s yours. Metacritic does not condone this behavior. Composing multiple reviews for the same game is also prohibited.
Our reviews are no different than that of any other product reviews, minus the character limit.
Here I am rambling on, but I won’t pretend I’m an expert on drafting reviews. Two weeks ago marked the anniversary of my first review contributed to the site (Killzone 3). Even now, I cringe at my questionable word choice and sentence structure. The first time I attempted to put my thoughts in a Word document, I sat contemplating for hours. Dozens of questions scrambled my brain. What mechanics should I discuss? What if people bashed my opinion? Could game journalism become a conceivable career? My magazine subscription history totaled at least ten unique publications. I read every review, whether I cared for the game or not. Yet when the time came to voice my own opinions on paper, the words did not magically leap onto the screen. I spent hours proofreading and rewording each detail; granted, that fact may not readily apparent given the final product.
At the time of this posting, my official review count tallies 22, not including two single-player reviews, a handful of beta/demo first impression blogs, and several unpublished reviews indicating a lack of quality. That equates to nearly two reviews a month. Not bad for a full-time college student with limited funds.
Anyone not up to the challenge, I ask a different, yet no less important, favor of you. Comment. Comment. Comment. Give other reviewers/bloggers positive AND negative feedback. Part of being a journalist is having your views questioned. We need to support our work wholeheartedly rather than conforming to popular opinion. Call people out when they appear to be lying through their teeth. Suggest grammatical changes to improve the flow of future reviews. Don't like what you read? Produce your own content. We will constantly look out for fresh talent to join the more official ranks of WGG. Publishers also take the amount of community interaction into account when filing their mailing lists - another ambition of WikiGameGuides. The more active WGGs members, the better our chances become of bringing you quality commentaries, reviews, wikis, etc. on release day.
Now I leave you with these closing remarks. We all know WikiGameGuides can't contend financially with other game-centric sites in its current status. John and Dan simply lack the resources to accomplish such a lofty goal right now. However, for anyone not seeking immediate pay, what we can give you is exposure. If you wish to work in the game industry someday, featured Metacritic pieces are sure to carry some weight on a resume. Let's show the rest of the Internet our voices matter just as much as Giant Bomb's or IGN's. Dan, John, Adam, myself... We can't do it alone. So would you kindly help us, please?