Eurogamer “blacklisted” by 2K, claims it’s “standard practice”

Thursday, 16th June 2011 11:26 GMT By Patrick Garratt

Eurogamer operations director Tom Bramwell has said the site has been “blacklisted” by 2K in a tweet related to last night’s Redner Group story.

Bramwell said: “I feel sorry for @TheRednerGroup today. We are blacklisted by @2KGames and it seems to be standard practice.”

Bramwell didn’t elaborate on what the move by 2K actually entails. Eurogamer reviewed DNF at 3/10.

It emerged last night that 2K has terminated a contract with The Redner Group, a PR agency, because founder Jim Redner threatened to blacklist journalists and outlets that gave Duke Nukem Forever a “venom- filled” review.

2K dropped the agency and made the following statement on Twitter:

“2K Games does not endorse or condone the comments made by @TheRednerGroup and confirm they no longer represent our products.

“We maintain a mutually respectful relationship with the press and will continue to do so. We don’t condone @TheRednerGroup’s actions at all.”

Disclosure: VG247 is a joint venture between myself and Eurogamer Network. We haven’t been blacklisted by 2K.



  1. Suikoden Fan

    I actually rate Duke Nukem, it has its own flair and its just fresh unlike the yearly re hashed bullshit called COD

    #1 4 years ago
  2. Razor

    Sony should blacklist Eurogamer.

    They keep dredging up PSN hack stories.

    #2 4 years ago
  3. BillyBatts

    Blacklisting is a seriously archaic practice. PR bottom line; if you distribute a pony game to a journalist and they rightly slate it then you only have your damn self to blame.

    #3 4 years ago
  4. Blerk

    “We haven’t been blacklisted by 2K.”

    You have now! :-D

    #4 4 years ago
  5. Patrick Garratt

    I bloody hope not!


    #5 4 years ago
  6. Robbins

    What does black listed mean

    #6 4 years ago
  7. mathare92

    Well this is farcical. So publications have no right to criticise games without the threat of being blacklisted? Poor show 2K. Poor show.

    Does the blacklisting entail access to interviews and previews, or only just review copies?

    #7 4 years ago
  8. Telepathic.Geometry

    What does it mean to blacklist them though? Does it mean that in future they wouldn’t send them review copies of the game or that they wouldn’t give them press exclusives or invite them to press dos?

    #8 4 years ago
  9. Blerk

    Pretty much, if I understand it correctly.

    #9 4 years ago
  10. Freek

    First rule of Fightclub: you do not talk about Fightclub. Wich is why The Redner Group got fired.

    #10 4 years ago
  11. Patrick Garratt

    @8 – I don’t know for definite what’s happened here, but yeah, that’s basically it. No assets, no code, no invites, etc.

    #11 4 years ago
  12. DrDamn

    So were they blacklisted by Redner or 2K? If the former then presumably that may have already been lifted?

    #12 4 years ago
  13. Telepathic.Geometry

    Hmm, I imagine that if you were blacklisted, you’d have the freedom to release information quicker in some cases, if you were well connected enough.

    #13 4 years ago
  14. mathare92

    So no Mafia 3 review from John Teti, then? :(

    #14 4 years ago
  15. mathare92

    I’ll just re-post what Brian Crecente (Kotaku EIC) recently wrote on the matter:

    It’s an ugly, the ugliest part of this business. And while news reporting can sometimes spur it (I once had a executive of a company spend ten minutes shouting in my face and calling me names at a public venue because he was upset we reported on news, not rumors, but news that put his company in a bad light) it is game reviews that seem most contentious.

    That’s because with many companies, reviews can be directly connected to things like retailer orders and customer purchases. Sometimes they’re used to determine whether a game should get a sequel or a developer or PR firm a bonus. So enough bad reviews can lead to money out of someone’s pocket and that’s when things get contentious.

    No matter how passionate a team of developers are, no matter how mindful of their art form, their creation, at some point any big game is going to also have a person who sees the production of that game and its success as a matter purely of business, of counting beans and making money.

    Should a game that does well get raked over the coals of sloppy criticism and rushed reviews? Absolutely not. But that doesn’t mean that games should get a pass when a reviewer has played through the entirety of the title and found it lacking. That’s the whole point of reviews, they are an expression of critical opinion.

    Our job, as game critics, is not to help promote a game or make sure that it sells well. Our job, as critics, is to offer up opinion based on full knowledge of the entire game. That’s pretty straight forward. If a critic plays an entire game and hates it, he or she should say so. If he or she loves it, write that. End of story.

    #15 4 years ago
  16. Ge0force

    There’s some nice humor in DNF but it’s nowhere as good as the original game. 3/10 is way too low, but everything above 6/10 would be too much.

    #16 4 years ago
  17. HairyArse

    We can’t even get whitelisted.


    #17 4 years ago
  18. DrDamn

    The flip side is that just like devs/publishers can churn out a bit of a dud game, the big gaming sites can churn out a bit of a dud review. They need to more tightly control the quality of their end product too. EG has had quite a few really bad reviews recently – I’m not contesting the score a reviewer comes up with it’s a personal opinion, but the method and content of the review has been shoddy. They lack information and tend to err too much on the side of trying to be funny/clever.

    #18 4 years ago
  19. StolenGlory

    The reasoning for the EG blacklist supposedly stems from something they said in a podcast a couple of weeks ago.

    #19 4 years ago
  20. Talkar

    I don’t really see why people dislike DNF so much. But hey, we live in a free world, one is allowed to say that something is shit whilst another says it’s the best thing in the world, and they are both right, since it’s subjective what is right and wrong, concerning likes/dislikes.

    Who did blacklist eurogamer? Depending on how i read this piece of news, i read it as 2K or Redner, i’m confused x)

    #20 4 years ago
  21. HairyArse

    Venatio – EG Community Manager – said 2K blacklisted them and not Redner.

    #21 4 years ago
  22. ReeceHeywood

    I got blacklisted by Sony for selling a copy of Killzone 2 before release date, even though the copy I had received I have bought and not from Sony.


    #22 4 years ago
  23. Telepathic.Geometry

    I agree DrDamn, EG’s podcasts and reviews often suffered from too much attempted hilarity. I generally don’t mind as long as it doesn’t interfere with the flow of precious information but they do often chase that joke harder than they discuss the facts. No biggie like, but I don’t want Fox News, I want the news.

    #23 4 years ago
  24. Hunam

    I think I heard that podcast, I think they were basically make fun of duke nukem and basically said the game was going to be a massive failure anyway.

    Although I hasten to point out it was all in good fun. Just some classically british taking the piss.

    #24 4 years ago
  25. BloodyJoe

    Man that was the shitiest review I ever read! Seemd like he didn’t even play it! Did not read eurogamer since then!

    #25 4 years ago
  26. sb319

    Why on earth would a publisher do anything to help out a site that has proven itself time and again to be extraordinarily amateurish and unreliable in their reviews? Eurogamer seems to pride itself on being the harshest critic around, and it makes you wonder if they like videogames at all.

    Eurogamer writers are so clearly in love with the smell of their own farts that they feel compelled to be contrary at all times and trash great games that deserve better. Any idiot can find minutae to moan about in any great game, that’s no great skill.

    #26 4 years ago
  27. sb319

    #27 4 years ago
  28. Stardog

    2K are butthurt.

    There are tons of average games out there that constantly get 85+ reviews. They’re comparable to blockbuster movies that get shit reviews.

    When game journalism grows up, these games won’t have it so easy, and we’ll have many more butthurt publishers.

    #28 4 years ago
  29. GwynbleiddiuM

    I always liked Eurogamer and that doesn’t change anything, and being blacklisted doesn’t mean they can’t review those games, it only means they have to buy the game and will not receive a reviewer’s copy and early access to stuff that usually goes around and they wouldn’t be invited to press cofs… oh, wait, that’s pretty much it, Eurogamer should blacklist 2K in return, IMO.

    #29 4 years ago
  30. xino

    you must be farking with me! They deserve it!

    I mean all these farking people who keeps giving games below 5 are just taking a f*ing piss!

    This is the next gen and no games deserved to be rated under 5/10!
    I’ve played garabge games- Iron Man, Thor God of Thunder, Quantum Theory, Homefront. These games are 5/10 or 6 but does not deserve to be rated below 5.

    Rating games below 5 is putting your journalism and editorial skills to the test because you will not be taken seriously.

    #30 4 years ago
  31. rainer

    Blacklisting game journos/magazines/sites is an ancient practice that’s been going on since the beginnings of the industry.

    Such dirty laundry is rarely aired though, dont know why I guess some outfits are scared they will get blacklisted by other publishers if they do come forward.

    #31 4 years ago
  32. IL DUCE

    @23 Completely agree

    @26 yeah I know like giving RDR a friggin 8/10 last year when pretty much everyone else gave it above 9…and then turning around and giving something like Brink the same score…just doesn’t add up, Brink was decent and I was really looking forward to it but even forgiving the horrid online connectivity the first week or two, it still wouldn’t be an 8…

    @29 they could also just rent the game…not to mention I don’t think 2k would really care if EG blacklisted them since it would be one less shitty review score

    @30 did you play Rogue Warrior or Shellshock 2? And iron man, thor and quantum theory probably deserve under 5 (pretty much any Sega game based on a Marvel movie blows horribly), homefront I would give a solid 6 the multi was pretty much a poor man’s CoD/BF hybrid…but was enjoyable, SP was completely forgettable though

    #32 4 years ago
  33. DSB

    @32 So people are supposed to score according to everybody else? Bullshit, man.

    I would’ve given Red Dead Redemption an 8 myself. It was a cool game and all, but beyond the “old west” mechanics, the cool setting, and the Rockstar brand stamped onto it, it really wasn’t that impressive for a game with such a long development time.

    You can’t judge a review by the score, you can only judge it by how well the writer backs it up in his own words.

    Generally, if I’m looking at buying a game, I’m a lot more interested in what the guy who gives it the “standout” score sees, that the others don’t.

    Not that you can’t judge zines and their writers, you just need a better reason for it than “This guy gave it an 8, when everybody else gave it 9″ :P

    Personally I think the epitome of Eurogamer mediocrity is their review of Braid. That sort of thing should never be allowed past an editor, without at least one counter-review.

    #33 4 years ago
  34. Johnny Cullen

    I didn’t like Red Dead Redemption. I tried, I really, really tried to – and for what it is, it’s a well done game – but I just couldn’t.

    2/10. (come at me, Rockstar. don’t come at me, Rockstar)

    #34 4 years ago
  35. Mr Tom



    I pray you’re not being serious anyway.

    #35 4 years ago
  36. AHA-Lambda

    @34 – i completely agree with you actually. Possibly the most overrated game i have ever played….either that or ico

    #36 4 years ago
  37. Mike

    Did Crecente go to the university of stating the bleeding obvious?

    #37 4 years ago
  38. DSB

    @37 Was there ever any doubt?

    #38 4 years ago
  39. IL DUCE

    What are you smoking Johnny? Lol…did you play the game for more than 10 minutes? Because if you gave that game a 2 you haven’t played the whole game…especially since the ending alone would give it a 5/10…epic shit man…

    @33 I’m not saying they need to review based on what other people review, or give similar scores, I’m just saying it was random and a mediocre review…

    People have the right to not like any game they want but in my opinion RDR was an unbelievable game, while it might have had a couple of boring parts here and there, and might have dragged along a bit sometimes I just thought it was professionally done and extremely high quality, some of the highest quality I’ve seen in a game…

    #39 4 years ago

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