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Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 studio boss: “One must be blind or stupid to give it a 4/10″

Monday, 3rd March 2014 15:19 GMT By Dave Cook

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 studio boss Enric Alvarez has spoken out regarding low review scores received by Mercury Steam’s latest.

The interview was conducted before members of the Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 team spoke out to condemn Alvarez for entering the project into a period of development hell. They claimed he views himself as a visionary who denies his staff access to the studio’s engine and more. The claims, however, are yet to be confirmed or denied by Konami itself, so make of them what you will.

Speaking with Eurogamer Spain before the expose, Alvarez was asked to comment on low Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 review scores, and in particular, Edge’s notorious 4/10 appraisal. The translation was sent to us by the site itself.

When asked if Edge’s score perhaps swayed the opinions of other critics when writing their own reviews, Alvarez replied, “This is another important issue. There are a few media outlets that set trends and then some other that follow them don’t dare to deviate too much. The first LoS, which has an 85 mark in Metacritic, also got bad scores on some major sites, yet the game ended having a very good one.

“It’s true that Edge liked the first game but they didn’t enjoy this one as much. I also think that what happened is terribly unfair. One must be blind or stupid to give a 4/10 mark to a game with whis quality. With a 4/10 people think it’s a crappy game, badly done, one that’s broken with gameplay mechanics that don’t work and awful graphics. If I were a reviewer I’d know this, and I don’t think that LoS2 deserves the score of a crappy game.”

On how the press received the game in general, Alvarez explained, “I tend to think positive after reading some things. I’m glad that some people are writing about games instead of making them. I have to take it well, otherwise I’d do something else. But there are also people that appreciated the game. Any game is a complex work, and sometimes I think there’s a lack of professionalism in the game press, who should judge things for what they are and not what they want them to be.

“I agree that, in the end, it’s an opinion, and an opinion is totally respectable, but let’s not confuse an opinion and a review. The review is about the object and the opinion is about the subject. You can say “I do really rock but I hate opera”, and this is an opinion, not a review. If I had to review “Don Giovanni” I wouldn’t even know how to start, and this honestly is something the gaming press lacks. A lot of people who review games do not live up to the game they’re reviewing.

“This is a problem because it influences people’s buying decisions, and they also influence the opportunities of the developers, because we live in a world that simplifies information and classifies developers according to their Metacritic scores. Do not misunderstand me, though: there are very good people writing about games, whatever their opinion is.

“I’m talking about very good people that, for example, destroyed the first LoS. This is not about being right or wrong, it’s about talking about what you have to talk. When you say in a review that textures or the engine are not the best, or that the gameplay is not up to it, you have to know it right. You can’t just say “I did not like it, and as I don’t like it it’s bad”, because that’s incredibly arrogant.”

Alavarez commented on why critics liked the first game, but not Mirror of Fate or Lords of Shadow 2. He suggested that just because members of the press and gamers perhaps disliked the first game that all subsequent impressions were, “tinged with hatred and resentment.”

What’s your view? Let us know below.

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29 Comments

  1. Luciferous

    I had to stop reading, the translation from Spanish is horrendous – Probably not the fault of anyone here, but it seriously needs going over and evening out to make the sentences make sense.

    #1 7 months ago
  2. YoungZer0

    Looks like something Erthazus would write.

    #2 7 months ago
  3. KAP

    100% agree.

    Opinions can go either way, obviously. But to give this a low score like that is borderline disrespectful. I’m loving this title at the minute.
    Just goes to show many in charge of reviewing is truly followers of all the early Edge reviews etc
    Shameful. This game is by far one of he best games I’ve ever played.

    #3 7 months ago
  4. POOhead

    Game definitely deserves a better score and no where near a 4 out of 10, id definitely put it as an 7 or 8 and the game does have some annoying shit in it but they are never used as often as the much improved combat is, probably why i never read reviews or impressions anymore, also the game got a 70 on metacritic, dont see how that isnt well received

    #4 7 months ago
  5. Mike W

    I agree with him, when someone (or at least for me) sees a 4 on any game. They immediately think the game is unplayable and just downright awful before even reading what the person has to say.

    Half of the reviewer’s reviews should be review, because in all honesty, they did a piss poor job reviewing this game.

    Castlevania Lord of Shadows 2 is a good game, whether it’s great?…..that is debatable. But some of the aspects mentioned in the game were blown way out of proportion (stealth missions). The story is not nearly as bad as some of the reviewers stated in their reviews. Some even went off to say the game doesn’t even look good and looks worse than its predecessor , which is just plain ridiculous.

    But I’m not surprised by the tactics of some of these game journalists. The ignorance and plain stupidity of some of journalists is going to be the downfall of game journalism.

    #5 7 months ago
  6. Dave Cook

    @Mike W “Some even went off to say the game doesn’t even look good and looks worse than its predecessor.”

    Jesus. Who said that?

    #6 7 months ago
  7. Erthazus

    @YoungZer0 Butt hurts after Thief “Double standards” fiasco?

    #7 7 months ago
  8. larasactua

    well i stopped playing the game when main character had to kill innocent people and it was celebrated by cutscenes. So it went game over because I didnt slaughtered innocent men and woman?!! What a crap, it desevers all the bad reviews.

    #8 7 months ago
  9. Mike W

    It’s sad when you look at the big picture, because some of these so called game journalists are destroying our industry.

    Their hypocritical theories is just mind-boggling sometimes how they blatantly contradict themselves repeatedly over and over again.

    For example we all know Titanfall is basically COD with just some new mechanics (like the jet packs and wall run) and Mechs (Titans). Anyone that played the beta will tell you the similarities.

    But I fucking bet you cash money, that these same piece of shit of reviewers say that this game innovative and breath of fresh air to the industry.

    #9 7 months ago
  10. Legendaryboss

    @YoungZer0
    Oh snap.

    Article: Sounds about right.

    #10 7 months ago
  11. Mike W

    @Dave Cook

    These two ass clowns from CNET, matter fact I think he also stated Castlevania on the motherfucking N64 was a better game than CLOS 2.

    I immediately stop listening after that, because the reviewer was either retarded or something far worse.

    #11 7 months ago
  12. Joe Anderson

    He’s passionate about his game. It’s a pity there is such a big reliance on review scores really, they do no-one any favours. Surely people should let the words do the talking?

    #12 7 months ago
  13. KAP

    Hypothetical.

    Edge reviews LOS2 a undeserved low.

    Every other gaming outlet decides to follow suit.

    Game doesn’t sell due to low scores.

    Murcury Steam studio shuts down.

    Edge decides to score many other games low scores

    Many other “sheep” decide to score other titles low.

    Many more studios shut due to poor sales.

    Then those that mean the very gaming media is destroying the gaming industry as we know it?

    It just goes to show how terribly hypocritical gaming journalism truly is.

    #13 7 months ago
  14. Dave Cook

    @Mike W Bloody hell, Castlevania 64 was horrid too. Crazy.

    Bottom line; stop giving scores. But oh wait, publishers crave them. Can’t piss off the publishers.

    I’m glad we’ve never done review scores. Seriously glad.

    #14 7 months ago
  15. Mike W

    I hope someday soon, someone starts a site reviewing the reviews of the reviewer and catch them on their lies and deception , so we can finally get rid of some these egotistical reviewers for good.

    #15 7 months ago
  16. Mike W

    @Dave Cook

    I think your review system here is perfect, if these publishers had half a brain they would want to embrace an system like this.

    1. It would kill that God awful meta-critic system (at least for gaming).

    2. It would give them consumer a chance to think for themselves rather than based their purchase off what some other person scored a particular title…

    PS.

    Castlevania Lord of Shadows 2 is far from a horrid game.. Castlevania N64, was a piece of shit of a game. Just thought I clarify that. :D

    #16 7 months ago
  17. Obernox

    I couldn’t fucking agree more. 4/10? 5/10? 6/10? even a 7/10 is complete bullshit and really goes to show the credibility of critics these days, the same that would give CoD 8s and 9s every fucking year.

    Sure the stealth sections sucks, but they’re very short and in no way bog down the rest of the game.
    As for story and modern setting criticism, that’s totally subjective. I think the story is great and the modern setting has a gothic Victorian era/Noir feel that i REALLY liked, although the laboratory area is admittedly drab, it’s early in the game that can be overlooked, just like the incredibly short stealth sections.

    #17 7 months ago
  18. Edo

    The game is definitely better than than 4/10.I am about 8 hours in and apart from some awful stealth sections(the Agreus part made me go berserk)it’s pretty solid…about 7-8/10.

    #18 7 months ago
  19. lolatfanboys

    @3 must have played alot of shitty games then?

    #19 7 months ago
  20. TheWulf

    Honestly, Edge has always been full of it. If you look over their review history, it looks the mist ‘shifty’ I’ve ever seen, they give titles that don’t have huge advertising campaigns (and thus haven’t taken out adverts with them) a low score to maintain their ‘fair’ average. Then they give titles which do have huge marketing campaigns a 9/10 or, worse, a 10/10 score.

    I bet if someone did a comparative study over a year with Edge magazines and which games get advertised, and which games have high scores, I’m sure they’d find some sort of corollary. And normally I don’t even suspect mags of this, but it’s just so damn telling that, hey, the bigger the marketing campaign, the bigger the score from edge. It’s worse than sites that seem to just play devil’s advocate just for page views.

    And I’m not even a Lords of Shadow fan. It’s just that I’ve watched Edge’s shenanigans for years, and my opinion has remained true. Metacritic is very telling, it allows you to watch out for this pretty easily.

    Watch Edge’s scores. See what they rank highly. :I

    #20 7 months ago
  21. Sherif Saed

    We’ve updated the article with better translation straight from source, folks.

    #21 7 months ago
  22. Sylrissa

    I tend to agree, and 4/10 is BS, however I still feel 7/10 is valid as the game while fun still has a lot of flaws.

    #22 7 months ago
  23. PSOCecil

    This guy comes across as extremely pompous, like he thinks that his game is ‘objectively’ good. No game is objectively good. None. It’s all an opinion. I can say that I wasn’t fond of the Last of Us, but that doesn’t make it objectively bad. I can say that I think that Earth Defense Force 2025 is a fantastic game, but that doesn’t make it objectively good.

    #23 7 months ago
  24. NocturnalB

    I’ve never understood how people let biased non-standardized opinions effect the games themselves so greatly. These reviews that have become the “standard” anymore are so untrustworthy. Over the years there’ve been a few reviewers who’s opinion I’ve come to disrespect greatly because of how clearly biased they’ve become.

    I can’t tell you how many games I’ve played in recent years that were reviewed mediocre to bad that I enjoyed personally. I’m not saying having reviews are wrong, but don’t be foolish enough to let them make the decision for you. It seems like the greater gaming herd does do that unfortunately.

    #24 7 months ago
  25. bobnice

    I agree that whoever gave this game a 4/10 must be blind and stupid. I am enjoying this game, especially for someone who liked the first game. Honestly I question a lot of reviews I see lately. There should be some sort of system that allows gamers to rate or review journalists reviews. Sort of like a thumbs up or down system like youtube has. that way people like me who were on the fence about this game, because of the mediocre reviews, could see which reviews were poorly created and those that were more popular. Something like this needs to happen because of some of these poor reviews we’ve seen lately.

    #25 7 months ago
  26. ddtd

    @Dave Cook I love how you guys do reviews. I wish more sites did it that way.

    Tell what they liked, tell me what they. didn’t like. Tell me what’s buggy, what’s brilliant and what’s new. And that’s it.

    They need to quit breaking these games down into some nebulous score, or a buy or don’t buy. All of that feels totally arbitray and more subjective from the actual review. Let the writing and the thoughts help me make a help me form my opinion.

    #26 7 months ago
  27. Gojira77

    “judge things for what they are and not what they want them to be.” I agree with that. Lot of reviews are based on what the reviewer wants the game to be, but not what the game actually is.

    #27 7 months ago
  28. Moonwalker1982

    EDGE cannot be saved anymore. Why?

    Cause they give the Rambo ‘game’ a 5.0, ……which is…sigh….higher than LoS 2. And this is what they say about Rambo the game:

    It’s a B-movie game in every sense, but approach it with sufficiently lowered expectations, and you may just be pleasantly surprised.

    Sorry EDGE…but fuck you. Words cannot begin to describe how pathetic this is.

    #28 7 months ago
  29. Kabby

    The music is epic. Everything else is mediocre.

    #29 7 months ago

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