Golden Axe dissenters “suck at games”, says Play Online boss

Tuesday, 21st October 2008 09:26 GMT By Mike


Play Online chief Dave Halverson has said that all those reviewers – yeah, that’s you – who gave Golden Axe: Beast Rider less than a seven [out of 10], either “don’t understand game design or just plain suck at games.”

“The majority of these people (can’t call them critics) either didn’t complete a fraction of the game, don’t understand game design, or just plain suck at games,” writes Halverson.

“The words “Hack ‘n’ Slash” are an instant red flag. Beast Rider is anything but. Mindlessly flailing in frustration because you can’t get the game’s simple controls/timing down is no way to play the game.

“Most gamers out there who would buy Beast Rider are far better players than the people rushing through a level or two to write these sad reviews; a sad but ever pervasive sign of the times,” he added.

We’re saying nothing.

More through the link. Thanks NegativeGamer.

By Mike Bowden



  1. pjmaybe

    Bless ‘im!

    Golden Axe is the latest in a long line of Sega IPs that should’ve been left rotting in the ground (along with stuff like Alien Syndrome, and alright if you must, Sonic).

    No amount of throwing rattles out of prams is going to polish this turd.

    #1 6 years ago
  2. Hero of Canton

    Didn’t he also give Sonic The Hedgehog (360/PS3) 9/10?

    Play’s well known for inflated review scores. I imagine Beast Rider was a Wold Exculsive for them, probably.

    #2 6 years ago
  3. JPickford

    What an idiot. I hate this idea that your opinion is invalid if you find a game hard. It’s macho bullshit.

    #3 6 years ago
  4. absolutezero

    He has a point, Beast Rider is really quite bad though.

    #4 6 years ago

    Yeah, I think that there is some truth in the idea that people who are no good at a particular game usually just dismiss it as the game being rubbish rather than them not knowing how to play it well.

    There’s also the other side that says that the better that you are at a game (without it being too easy), the more likely that you are to enjoy it.

    Just look at that Fable II EG review yesterday.

    It seemed to be built on the understanding that the game was so amazingly brilliant purely based on the fact that it kept rewarding you even when you messed up.

    #5 6 years ago
  6. Blerk

    And it looked bad from the moment they revealed it. Quite why they even bothered finishing it, I have no idea.

    #6 6 years ago
  7. Eregol

    With the whole Gamespot thing recently it’s hard to trust a lot of Magazine reviews. Especially ones that say ‘World Exclusive’, ‘First Review’, or just ‘Exclusive’.

    I tend to buy those magazines very infrequently.
    I’d be amazed if Golden Axe gets above 7.5 average on Metacritic.

    #7 6 years ago
  8. Arubiano

    “It’s not our fault our game sucks, all of the reviewers have banded together to crap on us, it’s a conspiracy!!!! They are out to get us!!, Kill THEM!!!” :quote from Dave Halverson.

    What a sad little man.

    #8 6 years ago
  9. pjmaybe

    I think even if it HAD been any good (which, looking at the trailers and stuff and a few reviews it wasn’t) it was always going to get a sore kicking releasing at this time of year. There’s just too much other good stuff to bother with this, surely?

    #9 6 years ago
  10. absolutezero

    Look at it this way Saints Row 2 is fucking dire yet EG gave it a 9 and a glowing review. All because someone there clicked with it, so what exactly is wrong with that guy enjoying Golden Axe? Even in the EG reveiw it mentions the parry and dodge chances were too short, which is rubbish to be honest, its alot like Heavenly Sword without the delusions of grandure.

    #10 6 years ago
  11. Smartypants

    I’ve played it and it’s CRAP. Waste of bandwidth, I give it a 2/10.

    #11 6 years ago
  12. absolutezero

    yarrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr Ƞ

    #12 6 years ago
  13. Smartypants

    Heavenly Sword was mediocre at best, but it’s a work of genius compared to Golden Axe: BE. Really it’s that bad.

    #13 6 years ago
  14. absolutezero

    No. Its not.

    #14 6 years ago
  15. Esha

    I had the feeling that this might’ve not been all that great based on the fact that it seems quite entirely to be just another game that sells on the merits of rather large jubblies.

    Had the game had Ax Battler, the little Dwarf guy whom I can never remember the name of, and the ace Panther fellow and the Centaur from the third game (Mega Drive and arcade, respectively) also in there, I would’ve been more willing to entertain that it was actually an honest attempt to uphold something even remotely Golden Axe-like.

    Not to mention that Golden Axe was always colourful and varied, this new Golden Axe game seems… brown. Does that ever change, or is that just misrepresentation of the game in trailers and screenshots (honest question)?

    It probably is hard though, and it’s easy to make a game hard. The irony, however, is that Golden Axe was always a ludicrously easy game. It was possible to beat the arcade machine on a credit or two, and the follow-up games weren’t that much more difficult either and they only took minimal effort to master.

    So basing the merits of a Golden Axe follow-up on it being difficult doesn’t exactly fill me with confidence. Golden Axe was hardly Ghouls & Ghosts, was it? Now that was a bloody hard game, unrealistically so sometimes.

    I’m going to rent this though, just to see for myself.

    Generally, however, Sega does tend to do better with new IP than old. Whenever they reinvent IP we get bloody Sonic Heroes all over again. But whenever they try new IP, we get absolute genius like Valkyria Chronicles, which I could hold close and never let go as far as good games go (and that’s just based upon the demo).

    I’m surprised Sega hasn’t noticed this too, yet. I think if they limited themselves to a maximum of one sequel these days and always went on to develop new IPs beyond that, they’d be as successful as they were back in the day, so long ago.

    #15 6 years ago
  16. Hero of Canton

    Look at it this way Saints Row 2 is fucking dire yet EG gave it a 9 and a glowing review. All because someone there clicked with it, so what exactly is wrong with that guy enjoying Golden Axe?

    Well, for one the EG review wasn’t completely out of whack with a lot of the high scores Saints Row was getting. Sure, it was a little above the norm, but Golden Axe has been generally getting very low scores, which makes a 9 look more out of place. Then you factor in that Play magazine is well-known for overrating games – Vanillaware’s Odin Sphere is a lovely-looking game, but it’s not a 10/10 in anyone’s book, and the small matter of him regularly overpraising Sega titles (as I said above, the execrable Sonic The Hedgehog got 9/10) means it’s a very different matter from the Eurogamer Saints Row critique.

    #16 6 years ago
  17. absolutezero

    The comparison was more about the the problems with each title and why GA got written off from the start. Both struggle with the basics, each feels sluggish to control but Saints Row has a multitude of bugs and its really ugly. The reviewer had alot of fun with it though and thus gave it a good score. My point was why is it such a shocking suggestion that the samething might have happened with the Play guy and Golden Axe?

    Its not that hard and the environments do change, its still a pretty terrible game and its far worse than the Conan title that available for next to nothing. The worst thing is that the Beasts of the title control like tanks which makes using them more of a chore than a reward.

    You are correct though Play is a terrible mag. Then again look at the shit-storm caused by the EDGE Saints Row 2 review, it stands far closer to my opinion of the title in that its crass and humour-less and actually quite disturbing in the worst way, yet its been dismissed aswell.

    #17 6 years ago
  18. Hunam

    I bought the game, got half way through and I hate it. It’s not fun, it’s not well made and it’s just frustrating. There are no real set pieces, you just fight the same group of baddies over and over but in slightly different looking places.

    #18 6 years ago
  19. pjmaybe

    Comparing it to Heavenly Sword to try and bolster its rep isn’t a very smart move :)

    #19 6 years ago
  20. absolutezero

    The entire moral system just got on my nerves aswell, the huge blue guys with the axes are always the first things to run straight at you, its tricky trying to keep them alive and concentrate on the blocking stuff aswell.

    It is shit, but I fucking hate the way people that never had any interest or in the case of someone like Blerk no real way to play the game anyway, rubber-necks and chimes in with the most pointless shite like “Well the videos looked a bit rubbish”. HO HO Thanks for that nugget.

    #20 6 years ago
  21. Hunam

    It’s also worth a mention that Play gave Lair a 9.

    #21 6 years ago
  22. Hero of Canton

    Nice one, Hunam. I knew there was a better example of a rubbish game being rated highly by Play.

    #22 6 years ago
  23. Whizzo

    Maybe they should release a demo so we can see that the reviewers are wrong and we can judge it for ourselves. Although that may mean we’d see it isn’t actually much cop as well.

    #23 6 years ago
  24. OrphanageExplosion

    The irony is of course that everyone who’s ever worked with Dave Halverson knows that EVERY TIME he gets a new game, he instantly switches it to Easy mode so he can play through it as quickly and as easily as possible.

    Perhaps because he sucks at games?

    #24 6 years ago
  25. Retroid

    I think he’ll find that it’s the devs for this who “suck at games”.

    #25 6 years ago
  26. Smartypants

    I’d be very surprised if they release a demo of this. They must know that the only reason it will sell at least a couple of copies is because unsuspecting punters see the name Golden Axe and think it’s some amazing next-gen version of a game they fondly remember. Allowing everybody to try a demo for themselves would mean only the most stupdily stubborn Gamefaq-posters would be left to buy their crap.

    #26 6 years ago
  27. Esha

    I think it’s going to sell more because of the misuse of Tyris Flare actually.

    And that leaves me feeling amazingly empty inside in regards to the current generation of punters.

    Oh well, it doesn’t impact on the arcade Golden Axe games, which are absolutely bloody ace and fantastic if played with an arcade stick.

    Now that might have some success, a PS3 arcade stick and a variant of MAME coupled with Sega’s entire arcade line-up. Sega has nothing to lose by doing such a thing, they should really consider it.

    #27 6 years ago

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