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.”
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