There is a disconnect between games reviews and games buyers that renders Metacritic meaningless, according to Rebellion boss Jason Kingsley.
The studio’s Sniper Elite series has nailed average review scores of between 77 per cent and 53 per cent, but that hasn’t stopped the last two main games in the series from topping the charts and shifting hundreds of thousands of units digitally.
"Nobody here ever bothers about Metacritic," Kingsley told Games Industry. "We think of it as irrelevant, quite frankly.
We only concentrate on what the users think, and every aggregate user score has been significantly higher than the aggregate professional score. We care about the people who are spending their money, and whether we’re happy that we’ve made a good game. The acid test isn’t somebody’s abstracted number.
Professional reviewers have a very difficult job, because they cannot see a game from the perspective of somebody who’s paid money for it. Because that’s their job. Your average player who buys the game is almost obligated to try and enjoy it. They’re hoping this thing they’ve paid for is good, and if it’s crap they’re very, very disappointed indeed and they probably won’t buy another game from you.
I’m not saying professional reviewers try not to enjoy games, but that’s what they do during the week as a profession, with all the pressures and deadlines that come with it.”
Metacritic’s role in the industry is back in the headlines at the moment as an increasing number of sites opt to remove scores from their reviews.