Mitch Gitelman is the head of FASA Studios over at Microsoft, the makers of some noteworthy Xbox titles, including Crimson Skies. He is not fond of the reception Shadowrun is getting, which I can fully symphatize with. So he decided to volunteer for the Official Xbox Magazine OXM podcast, “because the reviews of my game suck ass”. The result is interesting indeed, something of a rare public exchange on the subject of reviews between journalists and game developers.
He raises solid points and I also fully understand the reviewers, too. Well, the ones I would call journalists and not “fans who have learned to type”, as it’s put regarding some reviewers. For instance, Shadowrun is criticized a lot for having only two game modes and nine maps. Well, I’ve played a lot of Battlefield 2 and way more than 90% of my time has been spent playing a grand total of two maps. I have only played one game mode! So why the perceived need for more? I’ve dabbled in the other maps and there’s maybe one or two among them that I like, the rest is just filler. Counter-Strike is also played on two maps almost exclusively, and in two game modes. Ditto any other FPS you care to mention, I’d wager.
Check out the podcast here, it’s good stuff, made the commute fly by. This really does reinforce the image I have of OXM, that is, it’s not a Microsoft operated media outlet but actually an independent publication. Which I would probably buy if it weren’t for the ridiculous price point in Finland.