UPDATE 05/03/01: More devastating news on the editorial gaming online field. Imagine Media is shutting down dailyradar and pcxl.com (the latter being out just a week ago), it is not clear whether this includes their Italian and UK-based portals though. This comes as really shocking news proving that the dot com business is not only in deep sh!t (something everyone knows already anyway) but that sites that seem to be doing great (just look at how many different sponsors per page dailyradar had) may fall apart when we less expect it.
So the question now is, with gamecenter and dailyradar out of the business and IGN most surely to follow, where are we PC gamers going to head to read some insightful info about our beloved industry? Those of us with actual brains to avoid happypuppy and dial-up net access to avoid gamespot will have to look elsewhere when searching for the next website to place as new homepage. In the meantime, youre all cordially invited to set my profile page here for that :)
UPDATE 04/12/01: At long last my children, email alerts are back for good. No more bookmarked profile pages being accessed every once in a gnome level-up since this desired feature is here once again to save you all that hassle. The only side effect to it would be people not visiting profile pages anymore and thus not seeing the wonderful notes some writers post in their profiles on a daily basis, such as this update. (Note to self: Why in the heck do I keep writing this things?)
In other news, start forgetting what I told you in the last update about happy puppy still being king since it is stated that their owners at theglobe.com are in deep sh!t by now, with their once stock trading at $38 now going as low as $0,19. Hurrah!
Speaking of rotting corpses, Indrema, the people behind the L600 console, are going out of business according to a news story. With a GeForce (the first one) as video card to power its graphics and Micro$oft making its entry with the X-BOX this fall, this one was obviously going to sink anyway, but knowing that at last one console is screwed before release is good news nonetheless.
One sad note, it should be of public knowledge by now that epinions has once again reduced their taskforce laying off some more staffers. This comes as no surprise now that E2 programmers have finally rebuilt the notification list, working their asses off for many months is paid by giving them the sack, apparently. Ruthless capitalism world we live in!
If you are getting too bored, you can go check this site to prove how much of a gamer you really are. Be warned, since most of the questions are console based, leaving me as a complete ignorant as I answered wrong every Final Fantasy related question (by the way, do you know who is the character with the scar in FF, cause I have been answered that three times to day and never got it right, thanks).
UPDATE 04/07/01: The online gaming business is getting worse as I had predicted. Most of sharkygames and sharkyextremes staffs are leaving sharky, according to a message at their web site. This includes my old time favorite writer Andrew Bub, hope he finds a new publisher for his BeatDown column soon.
The Snowball company, owners of the IGN chain and gone gold, are also in deep trouble as analysts anticipated. Their stock price keeps going down and is now around $0.30. The bad thing is that the bastards at happy puppy are still doing well despite this massive mess. The good thing is that Imagine Media is about to launch another website, which is kinda ironic.
In other news, epinions has not yet turned on the so desired review notification feature as of this writing, and new products in the gaming categories such as Tribes 2, Fallout Tactics and Black&White are still nowhere to be found, making me wonder if sacrificing 60% of their staff in exchange for automated scripts wasnt a big mistake. However, most people here are still patient, others havent written a single line since E2 was launched though, claiming they will start doing it again when E2 finally reactivates the darn notification thingy. We will see if they ever get a chance to write again. You can notice things are really wrong all around when not even the la la la la jerks pop up anymore.
Currently playing: In Cold Blood, an adventure game by Dream Catcher (I havent gotten too deeply into it yet to make comments) and Clive Barkers Undying. Undying looks and sounds awesome, especially now that I became the happy owner of a 4.1 Klipsch (pronounced klaiapsáàacheweskiiryer) positional audio system, for the eternal eardrum torture of parents and neighbors.
UPDATE 3/10/01: Wow, I havent updated my profile page since, well, never updated it actually. Just wrote one piece of commentary I considered smart back then and left things to go on their own.
Its Saturday and Im bored, Im done with the Kohan: Immortal Sovereigns preview for mpog.com (pretty good game for those into the RPG-RTS hybridization thingy, by the way) so I have decided to pay my ol epinions.com a visit.
To be honest, I thought about leaving epinions when it become Epinions2, due to the messy facts known by everyone (with the exception, perhaps, of epinions own designer and programmer teams), along with many other excellent writers in what will be known in the future as the Talented Exile. But after movie advisor janesbit1 ran through the exit point, the gates immediately closed in front of my face leaving me trapped inside. Then I realized there are games out there that the professional sites Im currently working for wont deliver to me (but I still wanna buy em), so Ill have to go buy them myself. And then where would I write about them? Epinions, I think, since no other of the paying sites has so many different products to review in the videogames category, and theres also a solid gaming community gathered here trying to stand among all the tips for changing diapers crap.
I dont know if some poor soul will ever read this, so please let me know. As always, I can be reached at email@example.com Dont expect this to be updated daily, monthly is more possible. Also, dont expect JAVAbitch tricks displayed, following the example of my defunct pals at CNET GameCenter, I plan to use only the ancient HTML language for this, and by that I mean bold and italics, nothing more.
To put an end to this, Ill post a couple of weird letters that, now as a professional game reviewer (I use the term loosely since no critic is actually professional in anything), I receive in a daily basis. This is similar to what other sites are doing, but Im not making this up. These are real letters sent by freaks from all around the world; I promise to shoot myself in the left mouse button the day I find myself making up this sort of things. Both of these were sent to my game-guru address.
Dear Mr. Nuker,
Please find attached to this message a beta version of our game, Moonland Headquarters, which is due out this fall. We would like you to preview our title as soon as possible and help us with the beta testing processes. We appreciate comments in the form of polite criticism. Any attempt to poke fun at Moonland Headquarters in your site will be penalized with you being erased from our list of reviewers we send stuff to. Thus, we will halt sending you any future demo and/or beta version from a future project our company will work on. The file is only 137KB large, so it will not take much time to download even if using a dial-up connection.
[Note: In the end, the beta turned out to be a malicious virus that almost deleted my entire hard drive if were not for the immediate action of Norton SystemWorks. Now can you see how much people love critics? The company SquareBytes doesnt exist either].
Dear Sir or Madam,
Im writing to you in order to ask for a refund I bought the adventure game escape form monkey island three weeks ago after reading yours review about it it I have to say I DONT LIKE THIS GAME BECAUES ITS SO BORING AND THE JOKES ARE FUNNY BUT I DONTK NOW WHY IS IT SO DIFFICULT I CANT GET PAST THE FIRS CHAPTER AND IS BORING SO I WANT YOU TO YOU MY MONEY
I look forward to hearing from you,
[Again, Im not making this up!]
Well, I dont wanna bore you talking about myself so lets say Im a 18- year-old guy who is in his initial process to become a system engineer. Im learning programming and different network protocols at the moment.
Enough about me, now to the important stuff: how I rate.
Well, no matter if you write a movie review, the Himalayas Exploration Guide or an overclocking tutorial, I will search for well-written content in all fields of epinions. If you write funny things or give me some good advice on something I didnt know I will undoubtedly give you a good rating. If gaming articles are what you write most, I have to say I´ll be more exigent with this kind of work as I write in this field more than in any others. Here I look at factors such as graphics, sound and music, fun factor and gameplay (this one may include techArtificial Intelligence, load timesand controls). Other factors such as multiplayer and plot are also welcome but I dont consider them essential. This applies to myself as well; I always try to give an appropriated resume (because thats what reviews are all about, resumes) including all the aforementioned factors.
Now to the classifications part:
Highly Recommended: I dont give HRs away but if your work deserves this rating, I will put it without hesitation. Opinions in this category have to be well-written stuff talking about everything needed, not just the essentials (the essentials in this case are the compulsory 100 words). But this doesnt necessary mean that I will give you a HR for painfully long articles.
Recommended: This one is the not so bad, not good enough category. When I rate with an R its because the article is rather well done but lacking some aspects I consider important (not talking just about gaming).
Somewhat Recommended: Sadly many opinions fall into this category. You will see me giving a SR in many different cases, but the most common are the following two. 1) The guy/gal just writes the compulsory 100 hundred words (I think now this dropped to 75 in certain categories, how pathetic...), which are not enough to be descriptive. 2) There are too many spelling mistakes; the article has nothing to do with the given topic, etc. However I will try to drop a note explaining why I gave that rating.
Not Recommended: The ugly one. I reserve this one for spammers, plagiarizers, liers and all other sort of opinionator junk. Although you dont find many of these, when I rate in such a way, its almost certain that member is making his/her way on my distrusted list. Also, this rating is self-explanatory, so I wont waste my time saying why I have rated that way.
Lastly, about the hidden issue, I will never hide my ratings, I think if a review goes into the SR or NR side its the person who wrote the awful thing the one who should be ashamed, not me.